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How can you get the best interest rate on your auto loan?

When drivers start the hunt for their next vehicle, they don’t always have the funds required to afford the purchase in one payment. This is why buyers seek out auto loan financing through car dealerships, banks or private lenders to help with the large purchase.

These financiers will give you the required funds for the vehicle purchase, provided you pay them back with interest. The amount you pay in interest will determine how much you pay for the vehicle in its entirety once the loan has been repaid. The less you manage to pay in interest, the cheaper the vehicle will be in total.

In order to get a low interest rate on your auto loan, you’ll have to show your lender that you are financially responsible.

Improve your credit score

Creditors will look at your credit score to determine how loan-worthy you are, right away. Keeping your credit score in the territory of “good” to “excellent” by having a strong and punctual history of bill payment will show lenders you’ve been trustworthy with borrowed money in the past. Coming to the bargaining table with a proven track record of financial responsibility is one key to unlocking an affordable interest rate from your auto lender.

Missing and late payments on credit cards, personal loans, utility bills and mortgages will hurt your credit score the most, so it’s important to keep yourself in good standing everywhere you make payments.

Monitoring your credit score (even for free, online) is one way you can review credit checks and make sure there aren’t any errors on your file.

Maintain steady employment

Lenders want to know you have enough income to make your monthly loan payments while affording any other bills you may have to pay on a regular basis.

Save up a down payment

Going to your lender having saved some money to put towards the purchase will only make the amount you need to borrow smaller, and it shows the lender that you’ve prepared for the purchase ahead of time.

Covering some of the purchase upfront with a down payment equates to a shorter repayment term and the potential for a lower interest rate, depending on how much money you can put down.

Shop around for the best rate

Getting quotes from different lenders is one way to find the cheapest interest rate, and taking time to do this step is in your direct control.

Finding a lender offering a low interest rate to go with your helpful down payment will allow you to get an affordable car loan that doesn’t see you pay an arm and a leg in added interest.