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Tips to Get the Best Car Loan

Buying a car is an expensive purchase and a potentially frustrating process.

You may not be able to control the dealership’s prices, but you can ensure that you’re getting the best, lowest-rate car loan that saves you the most money.

Understanding a few crucial tips and tricks can make all the difference in your car buying experience. Read on to explore how you can get the best car loan!

Be Familiar With Your Credit Score

Before you can begin the process of securing an affordable car loan, you must be familiar with your credit score and what factors influence your score.

Understanding how your current score and your credit history impact your ability to get a great loan is vital.

Having poor credit doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t be approved for a loan. What it does mean is that you will probably pay more interest on the loan. Those with credit scores of 650 or below can expect to pay interest rates of 10% or more! Increasing your score by a mere 50 points can result in a drastic decrease in interest rates.

Getting friendly with your credit score is one of the most effective ways to get the most affordable car loan.

Raising your credit score is far from impossible, and there are several things you can do to start increasing your score.

Make Timely Payments

Paying rent, utilities, and other household bills early or on-time is one way that you can increase your credit score over time. Late payments negatively affect your score and should be avoided as often as possible in order to maintain a decent rating.

Keep Debt Low

Check your credit card statements. How much debt are you sitting on? Accrued, unpaid debt lowers your credit score. Making regular payments and keeping debt to a minimum is key to maintaining and increasing your credit score. Try to ensure that your debt is less than one-third of your credit limit.

Increase Your Credit Line Limit

Banks tend to offer increases in your credit line over time, especially if you have maintained on-time monthly payments and a low debt ratio. Contacting your bank and asking for an increase in your credit line is one way you can improve your debt ratio and improve your score.

An increase in the credit line limit shows that your bank trusts you to spend and repay a large amount of money. The more financially responsible you are the higher your credit score is likely to go.

Don’t Apply for More Cards

In general, maintaining multiple credit accounts for extended periods of time is a great thing. Applying for and opening a new line of credit has its drawbacks though, one of those is a notable and immediate drop in one’s credit score.

Postpone any plans to apply for new credit cards until after you have secured your car loan.

Determine How Much You Can Spend

Once you’ve become familiar with your credit score and how to improve it, you need to determine how much out-of-pocket money you can afford to spend on getting a car. It’s important to remember that there are many costs associated with owning a car. Here are the main costs to consider as you define your budget.

Sales Price, Taxes, Registration

In addition to the sales price of your new car, you must also pay taxes and registration fees. Depending on the state in which you live, you may spend thousands of dollars on taxes and administrative fees.

Regular Maintenance

Every vehicle requires regular tune-ups to keep running smoothly, and when regular maintenance is ignored it could mean serious problems down the road. Regular oil changes and tire rotations are an essential part of being a responsible car owner and getting the most out of your car.

Auto Insurance

Depending on your previous driving history and experience, your auto insurance could cost you several hundred dollars a month. Fewer accidents and citations generally result in a lower insurance premium, though this is not always the case.

When shopping for auto insurance it is important to compare various insurance companies and quotes before reaching a final decision. That way, you know you’re getting the best price!


Perhaps one day in the future all of our vehicles will run on water or oxygen, but for now, we have gasoline-fueled cars. Gasoline varies in price from state to state but one thing is for sure: It’s never free.

Saving For The Downpayment

The smaller you can keep your car loan, the lower your monthly payments will be and the sooner you’ll be able to pay it off. The more substantial your initial downpayment, the lower your monthly payment will be.

While it may seem difficult to save several thousand dollars, especially if you are struggling financially and in need of a vehicle now, you can rest easy knowing that you may not need to. Depending on the type, make, model and condition of your preferred vehicle, you may only need to save a few hundred dollars or so.

It’s best to pay 20% of the total cost of your new car upfront, in the form of a downpayment.

Explore Your Options and Get Quotes

It’s very important to explore your options and compare quotes before making a final decision.

Say No to Conditional Financing

Before agreeing to any loan, be sure that all aspects are ‘locked in’ and unchangeable. Conditional financing may allow your lender to raise your interest rates whenever they like. Avoid it at all costs.

Double-Check Your Math

Have you figured the cost of owning a car? Have you calculated how much money you can afford to spend on getting a new set of wheels? If you have, please take this opportunity to double-check your math.

Checking your math ensures that your figures are correct. Bad math may not seem like a big deal at first, but when you arrive at the dealership and you’re several thousand dollars short, you may regret not rechecking your budget.

Sleep On It

Buying a car is a huge decision, and deciding on a car loan is equally as weighty and important. Compare the quotes and estimates that you receive. Always try for lower rates and shorter terms.

If your credit needs time to improve, give it time to blossom. Your patients is sure to be rewarded by lower interest rates, better credit, and less money spent on a stylish new ride.