How to Finance an Auto Purchase
Posted by Sanjaykale on August 31st, 2016
When you walk into a dealership, you won’t be there long before a salesperson asks how you intend to pay for your new car.
When the dealer starts in, just explain that you intend to pay in cash. Saying you’ll be paying in cash doesn’t mean you’re going to open up a briefcase with bricks of money inside, it just means that you’re not interested in dealer or manufacturer financing.
In some cases (if you have perfect credit, if the car is about to be replaced by a newer model) dealer-sponsored financing might be a good deal, but most of the time it isn’t. You can usually find better deals on car loans at credit unions and banks.
Telling the dealer that you’re not interested in their financing takes away an opportunity for the dealer to pad the deal with extra profit. Dealers make money on up charging you, so they have ways of slipping various extra fees and charges into your financing arrangement. Forgoing dealer financing also allows you to focus on the features and purchase price of the car you want — a far more important and useful task than focusing on the monthly payment figure.
After declining financing, your next task is negotiating the purchase price of the car. Some survival tips:
Resist the temptation to lease. Leasing is basically an extended car rental. When you lease a car, you must return it at the end of the lease or buy it from the dealer at a predetermined price — usually higher than what you’d pay for a similar used car. When you take a auto loan to buy a car, you pay down the loan and then the car is yours, free and clear. The only payments you’ll have to make after that are for gas, repairs and insurance.
Lots of people lease. Smart, respectable people lease. It’s not a terrible thing to do, but it’s not the best way to keep a car, because you’re always making payments. Lease a car for three years and, when the term expires, you need to look for a new lease or shell out thousands to purchase the car you’ve been driving.
Consider factory certified pre-owned cars. “Certified pre-owned” is another term for for “used.” But these cars do come with extra assurances about the car’s condition. Going pre-owned can be a really smart move, because most cars lose 18% of their value in their first year. A certified pre-owned car is one that has been inspected and fixed before it goes on the market, and comes with a manufacturer-backed warranty, like new cars do.
Size up your future car loan. Once you decide you want a new car, the first thing you should do is figure out how much car you can afford. Calculate this amount before you go shopping; don’t let a car dealer influence your decision.
Figure out how big a loan you should get. A good rule of thumb: Your monthly car payment should be no more than 20% of your disposable income. That means that after you’ve paid all your debts and living expenses, take one-fifth of what’s left. That’s your maximum monthly auto expense. Ideally, this number should cover not only your car payment, but also your insurance and fuel costs.
Decide how long you’ll give yourself to repay your car loan. A monthly payment is, essentially, the amount of your loan, plus interest, divided over the number of months you have to pay back the loan. The more months you have to pay it back, the lower the monthly payment will be. But stretching out a car loan too long—or any loan, for that matter—will ultimately cost you a truckload more in interest payments.
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About the AuthorSanjaykale
Joined: June 23rd, 2016
Articles Posted: 22
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