Buying a car requires a good amount of homework in order to get the best deal. Not only do you need to do your research when it comes to finding the right car, but you should also do your research when it comes to paying for it. Are you paying cash, leasing, or financing? If you’re financing, then you should shop around for the best rate. But where can you find it?
Is the dealership a good place to find a loan?
Not really, however, if you allow the dealer that you’re working with to check your credit and find you the best auto loan rates they can, that will at least be a good starting point. We say this because dealers typically add a couple of points to the rate that they find in order to make a little money from the deal. However, if you use the rate they give you as a baseline, then you probably find something better on your own.
For example, if the dealer checks your credit and tells you that the lowest rate that they can find you on the new car that you want to buy is 4.9 percent, then take that number home with you and start doing some research.
RELATED: How to Finance an Exotic Car
Where is the best place to look for a good auto loan interest rate?
Your best bet for a good auto loan interest rate would be at a credit union. In fact, the dealer that you’re working with might have a connection to a local credit union, however, they might mark-up the rate, so it’s still better to figure it out yourself. In that case, you may want to do a search on a few of your local credit unions and see which one has the lowest advertised rate on their website.
If you want an accurate interest rate quote, then you’ll have to apply with the credit union and see what you get approved for but if it ends up saving you some money in the long run, then it’s worth it. One reputable credit union that is widely used and known for its low rates is called Digital Federal Credit Union, also known as “DCU.” In fact, DCU is currently advertising auto loan rates as low as 1.99 percent, which is lower than what most dealerships can find you.
Is there are another way to find the best auto loan rate possible?
If you don’t want to go to a credit union, then you can always check with your own personal bank to see what auto loan rates they are currently offering. One of the main draws of using the bank that you usually use for your other banking needs is that they will usually give you a discount on the interest rate – usually, around 0.25% off – since you already have an account with them that they can link the auto loan account to.
However, you should do the math, because a credit union, or another bank, could still be lower, despite the cut in the rate. Either way, do your homework to find the lowest auto loan rate possible, it really only takes a few searches and clicks to do so.