Auto loan rate: is it possible to get a good interest rate?

BBuying a car can take time, and when you’re almost done, dealing with the dealership’s finance department or a lender can feel like a necessary evil. However, if you’re not careful, you could end up paying more than necessary for a car loan.

Although there are some restrictions, it is possible to negotiate the terms of an auto loan with lenders and dealerships. Here are some things you can do to save hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

How can I get the best interest rate?

Credit score

When it comes to qualifying for lower interest rates, your credit score is crucial. This is why it is essential to understand exactly what it is before applying for a loan. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to qualify for a lower interest rate.

Deposit

Whatever your dream car, the higher your down payment, the lower your interest rate. At the very least, you should try to deposit at least 20%. Also, the general rule is that for every $1,000 you deposit, your monthly payment will be reduced by approximately $18.

Hourly

When it comes to buying a car, timing is everything. If possible, shop in the later months of October, November or December. Also look later in the month and earlier in the week, as these are the times when sellers are under pressure to meet quotas and are therefore more likely to negotiate lower prices.

Fees and taxes

Taxes and fees are often overlooked until the end of the car buying process. If possible, account for them early in the process and pay them in cash. It may seem like a minor point, but it can save you hundreds of dollars over the life of your loan.

Refinance

Refinancing your existing auto loan can save you money in a variety of situations. Maybe your credit has improved, or maybe you just want to lower your monthly payment. Whatever your situation, refinancing may be the quickest route to a lower interest rate.

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