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Factors Affecting the Cost of Your Car

Everyone likes to get a good deal. When you are offered a low monthly payment on your car loan, that might seem like the best deal of all. In the long run, however, that low monthly payment might actually end up costing you hundreds of dollars more than you intended to pay. In order to understand the true total cost of car loans, you must look at three different factors.

Loan Amount

The initial amount you borrow is called the loan principal. The amount of principal you have left at the end of every billing cycle is one half of the equation that determines how much you will pay in interest. To lower the total amount you pay on the entire loan, it is a good idea to start with a lower principal. If you are able to pay 20% of the initial $25,000 cost in a down payment, that is $5000 of the purchase price that never figures into the interest you are charged.

Loan Rate

The other half of the interest equation is the interest rate itself. Bargaining for a lower interest rate can significantly reduce the price you ultimately pay for your next vehicle. A great credit score and other factors, such as dependable income, can lower your risk factors with the lender and thus can result in a lower APR, saving you a great deal of money.

Loan Term

A lower monthly payment might be tempting. When you accept a lower monthly payment, however, you are lengthening the term of your loan, postponing the date when the car will be paid off and costing yourself a lot of money in the process. You will pay significantly less interest with a 2- or 3-year loan term than with a 4-year loan.

When negotiating the terms of car loans, fight the urge to take it easier than your monthly budget can handle. Factor in the amount, rate and term of your loan to get the best deal overall.

Can You Get a Loan for a Used Car?

If you are like many car buyers, you want to buy a used car instead of a new one. For many reasons, that makes a lot of sense. You might wonder, though, if car loans are available for used cars. Generally, the answer is yes. Here are some things to consider when applying for a used car loan.

Think About Purchasing at a Dealership

If you need to finance your used car purchase, you should consider buying the car from a dealership. Generally, dealers are in a better position to finance used cars than other institutions. In fact, many dealers routinely finance used car loans. While there are exceptions, banks, credit unions, and financing companies generally prefer to finance new cars. Because they have a better chance of realizing a return on their investment with new cards, traditional financing companies often have rigorous application processes for used car loans. While you might ultimately be successful, getting such a loan from a conventional lender can be extraordinarily stressful. Thus, if you want to finance a used car, you should probably buy your car at a dealership.

Know Your Credit Score

Like with financing a new car, you will be better able to negotiate beneficial used car loan terms if you know your credit score. Before you start shopping for your car, request your score from one of the credit bureaus.

Don’t Choose Too Old of a Car

The newer your used car is, the greater your odds of securing financing. While there is no absolute limit, generally cars older than four or five years are more difficult to finance. On the other hand, if you run into trouble financing your older used car, you might look for a new car. Often, those who are unable to get a used car loan have no problem with new car financing.

Before you shop for used car loans, consider the unique challenges of applying for one. By knowing what to expect, you will be in a better position to secure financing for your used car.

The Possibilities Created by Used Car Financing

Many people throughout Canada have the dream of one day owning a car. Owning a vehicle makes commuting to work a capability, and opens many other exciting doors. If you have a family, having an automobile is a necessity almost along the lines of water and food. Luckily for everyday people who would wish to avoid having a significant chunk of their savings eaten by the purchase a car, used car financing makes the dream of owning a car a much realer possibility.

Different Financial Options Available

A bank or loan agency will in all likelihood be able to offer you a payment plan that meets your specific needs. Some people like to pay higher monthly installments so that the vehicle is in their sole ownership sooner. Other people like to extend the duration of their payment plan so that each month requires only a small installment; that way, they have more money for the normal operating costs of their household. Going through a third-party loaning service, such as a credit agency or bank, is more attractive to the person selling their automobile. This is because the loaning service will fully compensate them up front and you will effectively be borrowing directly from the bank or credit agency.

Stipulations of a Loan

The normal stipulations associated with used car financing are not unfair. Usually, one of the only stipulations is that there is an early termination fee if the borrower does not pay off the full value of the vehicle. Also, the seller of the loan may say that you can only put a maximum number of miles on the car each year, as an attempt to avoid excessive wear and tear on the car if they think you are not looking to eventually own the vehicle outright.

Owning a Car is a Greater Possibility than Ever Before

Because of the wide array of financial services available to you, getting a set of keys to a nice used car has never been easier to do. There is truly no excuse to be missing out on economic opportunities or making things more difficult for your family due to not having an automobile.

Who You Should Bring Along When Shopping for Used Cars

Shopping for used cars can be a daunting experience. With so many makes and models to choose from and with so many ways to finance your vehicle, going it alone can make you feel less confident than you normally might. To make your experience more pleasant, we have some tips about who you might bring along as you shop and take test drives, as this may help you make a more confident purchasing decision.

Your Spouse

Having your spouse along with you as you shop for a used car might make you feel comfortable in terms of helping you decide what kind of car best suits your needs as a couple or a family. You can also bring them to help you keep track of your paperwork and for moral support as well, especially if this is your first time buying a used car on your own.

Your Mechanic

If you have a good friend who is a mechanic, they can be an invaluable individual to have along when you’re browsing used cars. You can ask them questions about which models have the best track record when it comes to safety and reliability. Taking them on test drives might also help you understand and identify any unfamiliar noises you might hear.

Your Adult Children

Having your adult children accompany you on your used car shopping trips can be extremely helpful, especially if you have not purchased a vehicle in some time and are now a senior. They can help you make decisions about which finance option is best for your budget and assist with filling out paperwork if you find yourself running low on energy. If you are not familiar with today’s technology, your kids can help a dealer explain features such as GPS, Bluetooth capability and more.

Shopping for used cars can sometimes feel overwhelming if you go it alone. Bringing along a spouse or a loved one can help you feel more confident that you are getting the most for your money. 

Why Go With Used Trucks

As many of us know, a car is an important but highly expensive purchase. When you add up the cost of the car, its insurance and its fuel, the final sum is quite impressive. This is why many people decide to buy used cars. The benefits in this situation often outweighs the potential disadvantages. Owning a truck can make a lot of things in life easier. It enables you to handle larger loads. Much like other used cars, used trucks can be highly reliable.

The most obvious benefit is the lower cost, but even this feature goes further than you might expect. Used trucks depreciate less, allowing you to get more money if you ever decide to sell it in the future. It has thoroughly been tested by the previous owner, so you know that it has some reliability to offer. You don’t have to go through the break in period, and used trucks are less likely to develop new mechanical or electrical problems. In the long run, this saves even more money on repairs. You can even go through a certification program to be sure that the truck you are buying has been tested for quality, and all those with problems have been weeded out. Many used vehicles also come with a manufacturer’s warranty. This is something else that is available through a certification program, and it protects you in case something goes wrong with the truck further down the line.

Trucks are known for being some of the most sturdy, reliable types of vehicles out there. This is no less true for used trucks. Buying used is an excellent way to save money and still be sure that you are getting a quality car. There are many advantages that any customer is sure to appreciate. Now you can get out on the road feeling good about your choices with the transportation and hauling power you need.

Financing a Used Car With Bad Credit

When you have bad credit, it can be difficult to finance a used car. Everyone needs reliable transportation, but having bad credit oftentimes translates to higher interest rates and car payments. Despite these common obstacles, there are ways to get financed, even if your credit isn’t in the best shape. If you have a low credit score and you are in the market for a used car, here are some things you can do to increase your chances of securing financing.

Make a Large Down Payment

Making a large down payment is a simple, yet effective way to boost your chances of getting approved for financing. It shows financial institutions that you are serious about purchasing a vehicle and that you are capable of saving and managing money. You also present less of a financial risk, since buyers who invest large sums of their own money are less likely to default on loans. Buyers who make a down payment may also gain access to better interest rates.

Rebuild Your Credit

This may seem like an obvious course of action if you have bad credit, but it is the most efficient way to ensure that you get approved for a loan. Paying off overdue bills and establishing a history of responsible credit use can go a long way when it comes to securing financing. Car buyers with lower scores will be subject to higher rates and less favorable payment terms.

Use a Cosigner

Using a cosigner can greatly improve your chances of getting financed. Enlisting the help of a spouse or close family member is the most common practice when it comes to cosigning. It should be noted however, that if you do not make your monthly payments on time, your cosigner will also be held responsible.

Don’t Despair

In the world of used cars, there are practical ways to secure financing with bad credit. We offer customers a variety of financing offers, and we are sure that we can work with you, regardless of your financial situation. Don’t give up just yet; there are many ways to finance a car with less than perfect credit.

Buying a Used Car: How to Choose a Payment Option

When the time comes to buy a used car, there are many financial factors to consider. Perhaps your budget will narrow your used car choices, or you may not be aware of the payment options available. We are ready to show you some ways you can pay for your vehicle and to show you that the make and model you desire most may well be within your reach if you plan carefully.

Consider the Time Frame

As you consider payment options, one of the first factors you might want to think about is how long you will be paying for your car. Whether you secure a loan through the bank or choose in-house financing with us and depending on your credit, your loan could be as brief as two or three years or as long as five. It is important to understand the exact terms of the length of your loan before you sign off on a vehicle.

Give Yourself Time

Even if you find yourself needing a new vehicle for your commute to work or school, you should avoid jumping into a deal right away. Take the time to consider your options, as this may help you avoid hefty payments that might be hard to handle later on. For example, ask yourself whether your current car is a valid trade in or if you can secure a down payment that may help lower the cost of a vehicle.

Review Your Budget

One mistake many people make when they shop for used cars is to miscalculate how much they can afford to pay monthly. To avoid this error, you will need to factor more than just the car payment into your auto ownership budget. The cost of insurance, gas and other taxes and fees that will need to be paid when you purchase a vehicle should all be included in your budget to ensure you do not overextend it.

Buying a used car can be a challenge, especially if you are unsure of your payment options. However, being prepared and asking the right questions can help you get the car you want at an affordable payment.

Why Canada’s used-car world is becoming a buyer’s market

TORONTO — The balance of power in the used car market is shifting towards shoppers as improved data and online offerings create more opportunities to push for the best price.

A fast-evolving online marketplace is providing more intelligence on the fair value of cars, said Cliff Banks, a Detroit-based auto retail expert.

“I don’t know that it can be any more transparent…they all provide intelligence on the pricing and the deal of the vehicle, whether it’s a good deal, a fair deal.”

Kijiji Canada recently announced it will add a standalone auto sales site that will roll out later this year to keep up with shifting expectations. The site will add reviews of dealers as well as market pricing information from Carproof.

“The key feature for us, and one of the biggest, the biggest win for us is what’s called price transparency or price analysis,” said Matt McKenzie, general manager at Kijiji Canada.

The online classified company, owned by eBay, already boasts of being the largest player in the Canadian market with about 500,000 vehicle listings. Autotrader, owned by Etobicoke-based Trader Corp., lists about 444,000 vehicles on its site while there are many other offerings on the market as well.

Listing companies are boosting their online presence as the used vehicle market is set for significant growth, said Dennis DesRosiers, president of DesRosiers Automotive Consultants.

“There’s tremendous opportunity, and that brings in all the different retail players and their approach of, how do I get a piece of that?”

While new vehicle sales are expected to be largely flat at about two million this year, the used vehicle market is set to add half a million more in sales in the next three to five years, on top of the three million that changed hands last year, said DesRosiers.

The rise in the used vehicle market comes as improved quality in the past decade means cars and trucks are lasting much longer, allowing for a potential lifespan of four to six owners from the two or three expected not long ago.

“It takes 23 years to remove the vehicles from the road now, a decade ago it only took about 12, so it’s essentially doubled,” said DesRosiers.

Used vehicles also offer margins that are two to three times higher than for new cars, adding to their appeal, he said.

The quality and information improvements have significantly changed the overall used retail market, said DesRosiers.

“It’s not that far long ago, call it 15 years ago or maybe 10 years ago, where the used car market was largely a culture of deceit…even if the online capacity was there, there was just so much riffraff in the used car market that it was very dangerous. A lot of that has changed.”

The improved access to data means used-car retailers have to be more transparent and competitive about their pricing, said Jamie Tekela, director of pre-owned operations at Pfaff Automotive Partners.

“You need to really justify what you’re asking, why you’re asking it, and you can’t go asking $500 more for the same Honda Civic with the same mileage. It just it doesn’t work any more.”

“It’s night and day, to be perfectly honest. It’s gotten a lot more customer friendly,” he said.

The improved information on crash reports, comparable sales, and other metrics hasn’t done away with potential negotiations but does give more justification, said Jamie.

“There’s always going to be negotiations when trying to buy and sell vehicles, but with so much information available to each and every one of us, it’s a lot easier to explain our rhyme and reason why we’re asking what for a car.”

The Financial Benefits of Purchasing Your Next Car Used

If you are seeking out ways to save money in the future and watch your finances, choosing to purchase your next car used is a wise decision. Cars are not good investments and the odds of you selling any car for more than you purchased it for are quite slim. Therefore, it is important to focus on minimizing depreciation. Additionally, used cars have lower fees and insurance rates.

Less Depreciation

It is no secret that depreciation is problem when it comes to cars. When you buy a brand-new car and decide to sell it a few years later, you will be fortunate to get anything over half of what you paid for it originally. Alternatively, used cars depreciate at a much slower rate because the greatest amount of value is lost as soon as the new car is driven off the lot where it was purchased.

Lower Payments and Fees

A few of the other major advantages to opting for used cars include the lower car insurance rates and the cheaper registrations costs. Since there is less risk for insurance companies in the unfortunate case you get in an accident with a used car, they are far more likely to offer you attractive rates. You can even choose to opt out of collision coverage all together and save a significant amount over time. Lower payments essentially equate to less stress because you will not be fearful of getting in an accident and having to deal with expensive repairs of fixing your new car.

Considering used cars as opposed to new ones can be a smart financial decision. It can be hard to eliminate financial stress from your life, but choosing to go with a used car is one great way to minimize your debt. In the unfortunate case you got in a collision, having a used car can minimize costly repairs.

5 Benefits of Used Cars

When you set out to look for your dream car, you want one that has all the right features but doesn’t break the bank. Used car dealerships offer you myriad car choices, and they are your best bet for finding that perfect car. Here are five of the benefits of buying used cars.

The first and perhaps most obvious benefit of a used car is the lower price sticker. The steepest depreciation in value comes in the first two or three years of a car’s life. When you buy used, you profit from that depreciation, whereas an original car owner inevitably takes a serious financial hit on trade-in.

Used cars tend to come with lower down payments as well as lower prices. Furthermore, insurance and taxes on your used car will be less expensive, which means you have more money in your wallet at the end of the month.

If you want a car loaded with all the hottest tech, the latest safety features or the cleanest engine developments, you have plenty of options to choose from among cars made in the last two to four years. You can get a thoroughly modern car without the sticker shock or the drastic depreciation.

If you are operating on a tight budget, cars older than four years are probably the ones in your sights. Although buying an older used car may not leave you with Bluetooth compatibility, you will still have access to plenty of safety features in cars that date as far back as early 2000.

Last but not least, if your passion is classic cars, you have only one option. Used is the only way to go. There are plenty of other benefits to buying used cars. These cars give you the greatest bang for your buck and offer you the widest purchasing variety.