Most of our customers rely on us, the dealer, to secure the financing for their auto loan. We work in conjunction with over 40 different banks and credit unions to secure the best terms and rates available for our customers. However, the dealer does not determine your terms - only the lender can do that. They provide us with a number of different options so that you may choose what best fits your budget.
There are multiple factors that determine the rate at which your vehicle gets financed. Most customers think that your credit score is the highest influencer of rate, which is only partially correct. A lender will look at many factors that affect your credit score. They look at things such as: down payment, length of financing term, job time, income, time at residence, previous auto loan history, open (still paying) auto loans, debt to income ratio, etc. We would be happy to discuss these things in more detail at your convenience.
The simple answer is yes. Some of our customers choose to use the lender of their choice and secure their own loan before the purchase. As a commission-free store, it makes no difference to us how you choose to pay for your vehicle. There are times that we are able to negotiate better terms simply because we have lenders that are not available to the general public and only work with dealerships. If we secure the loan on your behalf, the lender may choose to call you to verify the terms of the agreement.
Equity is the difference between what your vehicle is currently worth, and the amount of money you still own on the loan. This can be positive or negative. For example, if you owe $12,000 and your vehicle is worth $10,000, then you have $2,000 in negative equity. On the other side, if you owe $10,000 and your vehicle is worth $12,000, then you have $2,000 in positive equity.
Positive equity in your trade can lower the amount of money that you finance, similar to a down payment. If you prefer, we can cut you a check back for the positive equity in your vehicle, but only after the original lender receives payment in full of the loan and the title is released to the dealership. This may take up to 6 weeks. Negative equity is rolled into the loan on your new vehicle and will increase the monthly payment unless offset by additional down payment.
The lender determines that, but most often the answer is yes. Make sure you designate the additional money to be applied to the principle of the loan and not the interest.
We are always happy to explore all options available to you. We have a finance specialist who works specifically with people who don't have the best credit. We would be happy to put you in touch with that person so that we can review your specific situation and help you make the best decision for you.