When you finance a vehicle, one of the costs you’ll incur is interest. In most cases, the best interest rates you may get for a vehicle loan are determined by your credit score. If you have poor credit, you may be eligible for a higher interest rate than a borrower who has good credit; however, this does not mean that you are required to agree to a rate that is unreasonable for your situation.
If you want an exact prediction of the interest rate you will be offered by a lender, the only way to find out is to apply for credit and see what terms they can provide you with. Even though the interest rates that lenders can provide can vary quite a bit from one another, knowing what other borrowers with credit scores that are comparable to yours are being offered by lenders will at the very least give you an advantage when it comes to negotiations.
Since the federal government does not have a predetermined structure for the interest rates on auto loans, you will need to conduct some research to discover more about the usury laws that are in place in your state. The directory maintained by the Conference of Bank State Supervisors, which provides users with an interactive map of usury regulations in each state, is an excellent place to get started.
As you navigate the tool, keep in mind that there are a large number of exceptions to the norm, and that the terminology used in legal documents can be difficult to comprehend. After stating a maximum interest rate, it is appropriate to include the qualifier “unless otherwise agreed upon.” If you sign a contract for a loan with a rate of 14 percent, then you are committing to a more expensive loan, even though the maximum rate allowed by a state is 9 percent.
If you suspect that a lender is charging you an interest rate that is in violation of the law, There are legal consequences in a number of states. If you have been charged interest at a rate that is higher than what is allowed by the law in your state, you may be eligible for financial compensation.
What are the repercussions if I miss a payment on the interest on my auto loan?
If you stop paying payments on your automobile loan, a lot of negative things could happen to you. Every time you are late with a payment during a given month, your credit score will go down. Should you be unable to resume making payments and bring your account current, the possibility exists that your vehicle will be repossessed.
Even more unfortunate, it’s possible that you still owe money on your old car, despite the fact that you no longer own it. The consequences may have a long-lasting negative impact on your credit rating, making it more difficult for you to borrow money in the future and increasing the interest rates on any loans you are able to get. If you are able to borrow money, the interest rates on those loans may also increase.
- Speak with your mortgage or loan officer.
The good news is that your lender understands your desire to prevent things from getting even worse, which is definitely something to be thankful for. It is unlikely that the expenses associated with collecting past-due debts will be covered by the sale of your vehicle because the lender has expenses associated with doing so.
Get in touch with your auto loan provider as soon as possible if you discover that you will be unable to make a payment on time in order to prevent falling behind on your payments. Inform them about your situation, and inquire about any assistance programs for which you might be eligible.
If you have a history of making payments on time, some financial institutions will temporarily pause your payments for up to one month without charging you any additional fees. When you call, have a payment amount in mind that you will soon be able to pay for and be prepared to offer that.
- Refinancing of Existing Loans
It’s possible that the high interest rate on your car loan is making your current financial situation even more difficult. Think about getting a new loan. You can lower your monthly payment by either lowering the interest rate on your loan or increasing the length of the loan’s term.
Your credit score needs to be higher now than it was when you took out the previous loan in order for you to qualify for a better interest rate. Once more, prompt payment is absolutely necessary. Your financial status has been negatively impacted if you have been skipping payments.
- Market your car.
If you don’t need your car right now, you might be able to sell it and put the money from the sale toward paying off the loan you took out to buy it.
What are some ways that the interest rate on an auto loan can be lowered?
- Keep your credit score as high as possible.
Regularly checking your credit score is important, as is paying off any debt that is currently outstanding. If you intend to submit an application for a loan in the near future, you should ensure that your history of making payments has been consistent for at least the past six months. Because of this, your credit score will go up by a few points, which will cause your annual percentage rate (APR) to drop to a more favorable level. Once a year, most credit bureaus will provide you with a free copy of your credit report.
- Submit an application for vehicle refinancing
If you already have an auto loan and you want to reduce the current annual percentage rate (APR), you have the option of refinancing it to a loan with a lower APR, a longer term, or both of these options. If you have a good credit history, you might be able to get an annual percentage rate (APR) that is a few percentage points lower, which would result in savings of several hundred dollars each year.
- Do some comparison shopping for different rates on auto refinancing.
Utilizing an online loan and refinance aggregator such as Way.com makes it much simpler to find lenders who offer adaptable lending terms and competitive interest rates. They provide you with the ability to compare various APRs, term durations, and terms. To get an estimate of how much money you could save by refinancing your auto loan, you can even utilize a special calculator that is available online before beginning your hunt for the best possible offer.
- Don’t Stop at the Store
When they sell you a car, your car dealer acts as a middleman. When they help you get a loan or lease, they do the same thing. Middlemen are always paid for their work, and it’s likely that you’re the one who pays them.
You should definitely get a quote for financing from the dealer, but if you stop there, you might pay too much for your loan. You probably looked around for a while before buying your car. Same thing with your loan.
Can I lower the amount I pay for my car without refinancing?
You don’t have to refinance to lower your car payments. This is called a loan modification, and it is done when people are having trouble paying their bills. You have to ask for a loan modification and show that you can’t pay the loan as it is. If approved, the lender may lower your interest rate for a certain amount of time or extend the length of your loan so that your total loan is spread out over a longer period of time, making your payments smaller.
If your income is sufficient to support the loan payments and the lender is willing to accept your debt load, having a higher credit score will not cause your auto loan interest rate to be in the higher range. If your credit score is on the lower end, you should work on raising it so that you may be eligible for the most attractive financing offers. This will put you in a position to make the best financial decisions.