What To Look For In An Auto LoanWhat To Look For In An Auto Loan

The are many things to look for in an auto loan, and many places to get such a loan. Auto loans are available from the car dealer, from finance companies, from credit unions, from banks and even from a number unconventional loan sources. The kind of auto loan for which each car buyer qualifies will be determined by a number of factors, not the least of which is the credit score of the buyer.

Those with the best credit history will of course have the best choice when it comes to auto loans, but even those with spotless credit histories will need to shop around for the best deal. It is a often a good idea to arrange financing before shopping for a new or used car.

The process of applying for a car loan in this manner is somewhat similar to the pre-approval process for a mortgage. The bnak or other lending institution will carefully review your credit history, your income and a number of other factors to determine how much you are allowed to borrow. You will in turn use that knowledge as you shop for a car. The ready avaialbilty of financing can often be a point in your favor when negotiating for a lower price on a car, and thus can save you money as well as time.

Whenever you apply for a loan, whether an auto loan or any other kind of loan, it is important to review your own credit file before the lenders get a look at it. That is because it is unfortunately all too common for credit histories to have inaccuracies, and an erroneous entry in that credit report could lead the car buyer to pay too much for the auto loan. Knowing what is in your own credit report is one of the best ways to get the best deal on the loan.

After you know that your credit report is as positive as it can be, it is time to start shopping for the loan itself. When shopping for the perfect auto loan, it is important to look beyond the monthly payment, and to calculate the true cost of the loan.

One of the most common trends in recent years has been to extend the term of car loans beyond the traditional three, four and five years. These days it is no longer unusual to see new and even used cars financed for six, seven or even eight years. While this extended loan period certainly does lower the required monthly payment, it can also greatly increase the amount paid for the car. In some cases, these extended loan periods can even leave car buyers in the uncomfortable position of owing more, often significantly more, than the car is worth. It is a good idea to look finance a car for no longer than 60 months, even if it means searching for a less expensive car.

by Brooke Sikula
References and Bibliography

Brooke Sikula is a freelance writer based in Ventura, CA and writes on a wide range of topics from home improvement to credit repair and everything in between. She is a regular contributor to http://www.loan-mortgage-auto.com and http://www.get-home-improvement.com For more information and advice on credit issues, check out http://www.credit-card-faq.com

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