Getting The Best Interest Rates On Your Car Loan
Whenever you consider applying for a car loan, you immediately think about the amount of the monthly payments and the down payment. But, do you also think about the interest rates? You should because they can either save or cost you thousands of dollars. If you are planning to apply for a car loan, avoid applying for any other type of credit for a period of 6 months to a year. Each time that you apply for credit, it reduces your FICO score. And, if too many requests for credit are made within a short period of time, it could make the lending institution wary of you. They may wonder why you have been requesting so much credit and may be less likely to approve your car loan.
The higher your FICO score, the lower interest rates you will receive. However, if your FICO score is on the lower side, you will end up paying higher interest rates if you do qualify for a loan. Before applying for a car loan, purchase a copy of your credit report from each of the three credit bureaus. These are Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Lenders commonly rely somewhat upon the information contained in your credit report in determining your interest rates.
It is very important that you make sure everything in your credit file is accurate, including your name, address, social security number, employment and payment history on all of your credit accounts. If you find anything that is incorrect, send a letter to all three credit bureaus and dispute the information immediately. If you are applying for a new car loan, make sure that you pay as much as possible toward eliminating your current debt prior to your application. If your debt to income ratio is too high, the lending institution may feel that you are unable to pay the car loan back. So, pay off your credit cards if possible. If you have any credit card charge-offs or accounts that have been turned over to collection agencies, pay them off immediately and get this information removed from your credit report if at all possible. If you have negative information showing in your credit file, you run the risk of not being approved for a car loan. But, if you are approved, you are looking at a higher interest rate over the life of the loan. The same is true if you have a previous bankruptcy or other credit problems, but many car loan companies are eager to help you find the loan that will fit your budget. Many car dealerships advertise promotions for those with past credit blemishes and may be able to work directly with a lender to get financing approved.
Even if you aren’t planning to apply for a car loan in the near future, understanding interest rates and how they are determined may save you a lot of money in the long run. The bottom line is that, the more likely that you are to repay the car loan in the lenders eyes, the better interest rates you will receive. Higher interest customers end up paying thousands of dollars more than those individuals with minimal interest rates.
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