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How to Refinance a Car Loan the Right Way

05/30/2022 22:00
Inflation is through the roof right now and everything is so expensive. Which means that saving money is more important than ever. And refinancing your car loan is a great way to start saving money! Today we are talking all about car loan refinancing–the when, what and why–and most importantly, how you can refinance your car loan the right way.Here is how you refinance your car loan the right way.What is car loan refinancing?Car loan refinancing is when you pay off your existing car loan with another loan. When you refinance, you should look for a new loan that has a lower car loan APR and better terms.What are the benefits of car loan refinancing?There are a few reasons why refinancing your car loan might be a good idea. And most of those reasons come down to one thing: saving money. You can save a lot of money in the long runBy refinancing your car to a lower car loan APR, you can save a lot of money in interest (we’re talking hundreds if not thousands of dollars). You may be eligible for a lower car loan APR if your credit score has improved since your initial financing, or if market rates have decreased since your initial financing (and they probably have–rates are still incredibly low despite rising interest rates in other areas).You can reduce your monthly paymentsYour monthly payments can reduce in two different ways when you refinance. First, refinancing to a lower APR will result in lower monthly payments. But even if you don’t qualify for a drastically lower car loan APR, refinancing your car loan will allow you to repay your principal over a longer period of time, reducing the amount you have to pay every month. You will end up paying more over the length of the loan, but You can add or remove a co borrowerIf you want to either add someone to your loan or remove someone from your loan, your best option is car refinance. When lenders determine the terms of a loan, they consider the finances of the applicant among everything else. They are ultimately trying to determine one thing: How likely is this person to repay their loan? If there are two people on a loan, they consider the credit of both applicants. So if there is going to be a change to this, lenders will want to revise the term of the loan. Maybe removing someone with not-so-good credit will score you a better car loan APR. Maybe adding someone with good credit will score you better terms. Ultimately if you change the borrowers listed on the loan you will most likely need to refinance your car loan.How do you refinance a car loan the wrong way?Is there a wrong way to refinance a car loan? Yes! Here are the most common mistakes when refinancing a car loan.Waiting too longRefinancing is all about striking while the iron is hot. Or in this case, striking while the interest rates are hot. If you are constantly pushing off your refinance, even though rates are low (and will most likely rise in the future) you might be missing out on some good deals. You also do not want to wait too long in terms of your current loan. Car refinancing becomes less and less rewarding as you near the end of your current loan. This is because refinancing ultimately saves you money by reducing your interest payments, so the less time you have left on your current loan the less money you can save.Not understanding the terms of your current loanWhen you refinance, it is so important to understand the terms of your current loan. This is especially important when it comes to prepayment penalties. Many lenders put prepayment penalty clauses in their contracts. This is meant to dissuade people from leaving their loan early (after all if you leave your contract early, that’s less interest you are paying to them and the less money they are making). So when you refinance your car loan, you have to be sure that the savings will outweigh the prepayment penalty fees. In order to be certain, always do the math to determine how much you can save and how much you will have to pay.Not comparing your optionsYou should always shop around when looking for refinance rates. Experts suggest applying to four or five different lenders to get a range of car loan APRs and payment terms to pick from. While this can seem daunting, using a company that specializes in refinance, like Auto Approve, can make this process much easier. They can handle all applications and paperwork for you, so you only have to fill out your information one time. If you do not compare your options, you could be missing out on some great offers.Not checking your credit scoreYour credit score is the most important contributor to the car loan APR and terms that you are offered, so you want to be sure that it is in good standing. How do you refinance a car loan the right way?So if those are the mistakes, how do you refinance a car the right way? It’s easy! Here’s our quick and easy “how to” refinance!Step #1: Do Your ResearchBeing prepared is the key to anything. Research which lenders might be a good fit for you. While you will not have actual offers to compare until you actually apply, you can get a sense of who has the best rates and who offers great customer service. Talk to friends and family to see if they have trusted lenders. And make sure your car is eligible for refinance–some lenders will not refinance cars if they are over ten years or have a lot of miles on them.Step #2: Check Your Credit As we said before, your credit score is incredibly important in this process. Request a credit report (which you can do once per year for free) and make sure your score is in good standing. Be sure that everything is accurate on your report. If there are any inconsistencies or errors, you can petition the credit bureau. If your score isn’t better than it was during your initial financing, it might be a good idea to put off refinancing until your score is in better standing.Step #3: Review Your Current ContractLook at your current loan contract and make sure you are aware of any penalties for which you may be responsible. Call your lender directly if you have any questions or want to review any of the fine print. When you compare your new rates, be sure that any savings will outweigh the prepayment penalties.Step #4: Gather Your DocumentsGather all documents you will need for your applications. You will most likely need the following to get started:A Photo ID (such as a passport or driver’s license)Your vehicle’s information (may include the bill of sale, VIN number, make, model, and year of your car)Proof of income and financial history (may include pay stubs, banking information, and your credit report)  Proof of residence (such as a mortgage statement, lease agreement, or utility bill. Note that PO boxes are not acceptable as proof of residence)Proof of insurancePut all of your documents in one secure place. Better yet, scan them all onto your computer so you can easily upload them when you are applying.Step #5: Apply To A Few Different Lenders and Compare OffersApply to the lenders that you shortlisted from below (or have Auto Approve handle that step for you). When the offers come in, start comparing. The most important thing to compare is the car loan APR, but be sure to take other factors into consideration:Prepayment penalties. You can refinance your car multiple times, so keep in mind that there might be another opportunity to refinance. You don’t want to be held to your new loan if a better deal comes along.Fees. Do the lenders charge additional fees? Customer service. What are their current customers saying about their customer service? Are issues quickly resolved, or do people seem unhappy?Step #6: Sign and Start Saving MoneyWhen you decide on the best car refinancing deal, sign on the dotted line and start seeing the benefits of refinancing immediately (and if you use AutoApprove for refinancing, we will even handle the boring DMV paperwork so you don’t have to!) The new lender should handle paying off your previous loan, but be sure there are no additional steps you are required to take.And that’s how you refinance a car loan the right way.There are a lot of benefits to car loan refinancing, but the main draw of refinance is saving a ton of money. And today that means more than ever. So don’t wait (remember we talked about how important timing is?)–get started today with a free quote from Auto Approve!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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What You Need to Know About Rising Federal Interest Rates 2022

05/26/2022 22:00
So much has changed in the past few years, and our economy is feeling the effects. Inflation is at a forty year high, causing everyone to scrimp and save now more than ever before. And now the Fed is raising interest rates to boot. Why now, and what does this increase in interest rates mean for you?Here’s everything you need to know about rising federal interest rates this year.Why is the Fed Raising Interest Rates?To understand why the Fed is raising interest rates, we need to talk about inflation. Inflation is the increase in the price of goods over a period of time. It is natural, and it can be a good thing for an economy. Most economists believe that a little inflation signifies healthy supply and demand in an economy. Healthy inflation typically hovers around 2%.Our current inflation rate however is around 8%, quadruple what it should be. And this means the price of everything is increasing quickly.Why is this? Well there are a few reasons, and many of them have to do with the effects of COVID and worldwide shutdowns. Some of the reasons for current inflation include:Supply chain issues: When materials are scarce, the price of production increases.Rising wages: Wages have been increasing to attract more workers, leading to an increased cost of production.Government regulations: Tariffs and other expenses can cause an increase in production cost.Change in exchange rate. The dollar has less buying power now compared to the rest of the world.New technology and marketing. New tech and new marketing techniques create increased demand. Growing economy. When the economy is growing and people have more money in their pockets, demand can outpace supply.Expanded money supply. If the Fed prints more money at a higher rate than the economy is growing, the money loses its value and inflation rises.When all of these factors hit at once, inflation balloons and outside intervention is often needed. That’s where the Fed comes in.By raising interest rates, the Fed is aiming to cool down inflation. Consumers will ultimately spend less when the cost of borrowing is high, which will reduce some of the demand that is putting too much stress on the supply side of the economy.The Fed initially raised rates in March, and just raised them again in early May. There are more rate hikes expected, and the federal funds rate is expected to exceed 3% by 2023.What Will Rising Interest Rates Affect?The Fed has been raising the Fed funds rate, which is used as a benchmark for other interest rates. Let’s look at what will be affected by this increased rate.Credit Card RatesWhen the Fed funds rate increases, the prime rate increases as well. And this rate affects your credit card APR. Credit card rates have been around 16%, but will most likely rise to 17% by the end of the year. Swiping your card will therefore cost you a bit more moving forward. Credit card companies are required to give you 45 days notice of any rate increases, so keep your eyes peeled for any news. Credit card interest is compounded daily, which means it can add up very quickly. Credit card debt can very easily snowball and become unmanageable.LoansThe rising Fed funds rate means that borrowing money will become more expensive. Personal loans, student loans, and mortgages will all see increased interest rates. In fact, after the first Fed rate increase in March mortgage rates rose above 5% for the first time in over ten years. And since the rates are increasing again, these rates will only increase.Savings AccountsOn the flip side of this, saving money may be more rewarding with the increased rates. Because with the increased Fed funds rate,the interest earned on savings also increased. In 2021, Certificates of Deposit (CDs) earned just .13% interest annually. Experts believe that this will increase to the 1% mark. This is pretty significant: a $10,000 CD would now earn you $100 in interest as opposed to $13 in interest. What Can You Do to Protect Yourself from Increased Rates?Increased rates, simply put, means that borrowing money will be more expensive, but saving money will be more rewarding. Here are our top tips for navigating the increased rates of 2022.Pay off your debtsWhen times are uncertain, the last thing you want is for debt to hang over your head, especially if it is variable. Commit to paying down (or paying off) your current debts so that you do not need to worry about increasing interest rates. If you have multiple debts, prioritize the variable debts with the highest interest rates.Consolidate variable-rate credit card debt into a fixed-rate personal loanIf you are unable to pay off your debts, consider consolidating them. Variable rates are susceptible to high APR increases, so consolidating them into a fixed rate personal loan may be a good option. This will help you lock in an interest rate for the duration of your repayment period.Refinance your mortgageMortgage rates will increase over the next year, so if you have not refinanced your mortgage in the past few years, consider doing so now. Rates are still relatively low right now, but will likely increase significantly by the end of the year. If you have a variable rate, you should prioritize refinancing to a fixed rate so that you will have a predictable payment.Improve your credit scoreWhile the Fed funds rate does affect what APR you will be offered, it is not the only factor in your interest rate. Your credit score is incredibly important when it comes to financing. Prioritize increasing your credit score to ensure that you can get the best rates possible. Easy ways to improve your credit score include:Making full, on-time, consistent payments (or consider setting up autopay, if possible)Pay down your debts to improve your credit utilization ratioHold off on opening any new accounts to avoid hard credit inquiriesRequest higher credit limitsCheck your credit report and dispute any errorsCommiting to an improved credit score can save you a lot of money when it comes to interest.Refinance your carWhile interest rates are increasing, the competitive nature of the car loan business means that car loan APRs tend to not react as drastically to the Fed funds rate as other industries. But experts still suggest refinancing your car loan now so that you will be prepared if the rates do increase.This means that now is a perfect time to look into car refinancing. You can save a lot of money by refinancing to a lower car loan APR or by shortening your repayment period, which will save you a lot in interest payments. If money is a little tight, you can refinance to a longer repayment period so that your payments are more spread out (and therefore lower), but take note that you will end up paying more money over the life of the loan. If car refinancing sounds like a good option for you, it is super simple! Make sure your credit score is in top shape. Follow our tips above to ensure your credit score is as good as possible.Research different lenders and short list your top choices. Read reviews and talk to others to determine where you might be able to get the best rates and terms. Consider traditional banks, online lenders, and credit unions.Gather your paperwork. You will need the information from your previous loan, as well as your vehicle information and financial information.Apply and compare. Apply to four or five different lenders and compare the offers as they come in. Decide and sign. When you choose which deal is best for you, just fill out the paperwork and sign on the dotted line!You can make car refinancing even easier by using a company that specializes in refinancing like Auto Approve. Our experts can help you submit your applications and select which offer is the best for you. We have relationships with lenders all over the country, so you know we can find you the best deals possible. We even handle the paperwork so you don’t have to (including the DMV). Car refinancing has never been so easy!And that’s everything you need to know about interest rates in 2022.Interest rates are guaranteed to rise more as the year goes on, so it pays to be prepared. Focus on improving your credit and saving what you can, while putting off any major purchases until the rates decrease. Consider consolidating debt and refinancing your loans to get yourself in a better financial situation. If car loan refinancing is on your to-do list, contact Auto Approve today to get started. It can save you a lot of money (like hundreds if not thousands of dollars!) So get your free quote today!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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The Truth About Auto Refinancing: 3 Key Facts

05/24/2022 22:00
There is a ton of information out there about refinancing your car. And while there is a lot to unpack, it’s actually pretty simple. Today we are talking about the most important facts of auto refinance. Here are three key facts you need to know when it comes to auto refinancing.#1: Timing is EverythingWhen you refinance your car, the timing is incredibly important. It is important in terms of how far along you are in your original loan, and in terms of timing with the market. The time left on your original loanIt’s really important to consider how much time you have left on your original loan if and when you decide to refinance your car loan. If you just bought your car and your loan is less than six months old, you should consider holding off on car refinancing. Experts recommend waiting about a year before you refinance–this gives your credit score a chance to recover from the hard inquiries of your initial loan request (which will result in the best car loan APR possible)If you have less than two years left on your original loan, it is probably not a great time to finance your car. Most lenders will not consider your application. But if you do find a lender that is willing to refinance your loan, it will most likely not be very worthwhile for you. Car loans are front-loaded amortized loans, which means that you pay most of the interest at the beginning of the loan and most of the principal towards the end of the loan. So the closer you get to the end of your loan, the less interest you are on the hook for. Market timingThe car loan APR that you are offered will depend heavily on the prevailing market rate for car loans. You want to refinance your car when market rates are low (like right now) and before they inevitably rise again (which they will).The time is right to refinance your car when:You’ve had your existing loan for at least six monthsYou have at least 2 years left on your existing loanYour credit score has increasedYou want to add or remove a co borrowerThe prevailing car loan rates are lowThe time is not right to refinance your car when:You need a high credit score for another applicationThe penalties on your existing loan outweigh the savings of refinanceYou have an old car or a car with high mileage#2: Your Credit Score MattersYour credit score is the most important factor that is within your control when it comes to refinancing your car. Your credit score is determined based on five major factors.Payment History (35%) This shows lenders if you pay your credit accounts on time or not. It will also show missed payments and bankruptcy details.Accounts Owed (30%) This refers to the amount of money you owe. This number is considered in relation to how much credit you have available to you (your credit utilization ratio). The lower your debt to credit ratio is, the higher your score will be.Length of Credit History (15%) The longer you have had credit, the higher your score will be.Credit Mix (10%) You will need a good mix of retail accounts such as credit cards, loans, and mortgages for a good score.New Credit (10%) If you open a bunch of new accounts, you will be flagged for a lower score.All of these factors are used to calculate your credit score. This score indicates to lenders a person’s capacity to repay a loan. The number is between 300–850 and indicates a consumer's creditworthiness. The higher the score, the more likely a person is deemed to pay back their loan. Your credit scores are defined along the following categories:Exceptional (Super Prime): 800-850Very good (Prime): 740-799Good (Near Prime): 670-739Fair (Subprime): 580-669Very poor (Deep Subprime): 300-579Higher credit scores will make you more likely to get a better car refinancing rate and better refinancing terms. The best rates and terms are reserved for people with Prime and Super Prime scores. Which is why it’s really important to focus on increasing your credit score before you apply to refinance your car. Here are the top ways to increase your credit score:Check your credit report. Compare your payment histories, make sure there aren’t any strange accounts that you are unaware of, and make sure all of your personal data is up to date. Report any errors immediately: small inconsistencies here and there can mean big trouble for your credit score.Make on time payments. Payment history makes up 35% of your credit score. Prioritize making on time payments to increase this part of your score.Pay down any debts. Reducing your credit utilization ratio will help your credit score a lot, so prioritize paying down any debts you may have.Request higher limits. Higher limits on your accounts will help improve your credit utilization ratio and help your score greatly.Don’t open new accounts. Opening new accounts will cause hard inquiries on your credit report, which can temporarily hurt your credit score.Commit to increasing your credit score before applying to refinance your car. It can save you a lot of money!#3: Auto Refinance Companies are Your Best BetThere are a lot of places where you can refinance your car. Traditional banks, car dealerships, credit unions, online lenders–it can be truly overwhelming. That’s why your best bet when it comes to refinance is to use a company that specializes in car refinancing, like Auto Approve. Auto Approve has relationships with lenders all across the country, so they get you the best deals possible and eliminate a lot of the legwork for you. When all you do is car refinance, it means that you know all of the ins and outs of the industry and can find the best rates and deals for your customers.With a 4.7 out of 5 star review on TrustPilot, an A + rating from the Better Business Bureau, and a 96% would-recommend rating on Lending Tree, we’re pretty sure our customers are glad they trusted Auto Approve.And those are three key facts you should know about auto refinancing.Using a company that specializes in auto refinance can eliminate a lot of the noise for you. They can answer your questions (and even help you with the paperwork!). So get in touch with Auto Approve today to get the ball rolling and start saving money today!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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Handling Rising Costs of Living: Why It’s Happening and How to Save

05/23/2022 22:00
Cost of living just keeps rising these days, and at a faster rate than ever before. And it’s not just in the United States–the cost of living is going up across the globe. But why now, and what can you do to save your hard earned money.Here are our top tips to reduce your cost of living expenses and save more money.What are cost of living expenses?Cost of living expenses depend in part on the individual. But according to the Economic Policy Institute, the most common cost of living expenses are housing, food, transportation, childcare, and healthcare. Inflation has caused these expenses to skyrocket lately.Why is the cost of living so high?The cost of living is so high these days due to inflation in the United States, which is higher than it’s been in forty years (that’s right, FORTY years!)  and due to global inflation, which is at its highest since 2008. There are a lot of factors that contribute to inflation, and all take their toll on our wallets. Here are some of the top reasons for increased inflation and cost of living.Shortage on GoodsShutdowns during the pandemic caused manufacturing across the globe to halt. This caused a shortage not only in products, but in the raw materials used to make those products, including plastic, steel, timber, and concrete. While manufacturers have been reopened for some time now, they are still scrambling to catch up with demand. This drives up inflation and therefore our cost of living.Increased Fuel PricesGas is more expensive than ever, which affects our cost of living in a major way. As of late May, the national average was $4.57 a gallon. For the first time ever, drivers in all 50 states paid over $4.00 per gallon. This is because the price of crude oil has surged to over $110 per barrel, a cost that is passed on to consumers.And this price surge is for a few reasons:The US ban on Russian oil. While the US doesn’t get a lot of oil from Russia, the global fuel market is very sensitive. Any decision that affects purchasing fuel has many ripple effects. Ripples from the pandemic. Demand for oil plummeted during the shutdowns, causing oil producers to slow down production. This supply and demand imbalance has caused prices to surge.Summer blend gas. During the warmer months, gas companies switch to a “summer blend” which is formulated to evaporate less. But this reformulation comes with a higher price tag of an additional $.07 to $.10 per gallon.Increased Shipping CostsIncreased fuel prices coupled with a shortage of drivers and loaders has caused an increase in shipping costs as well. And this cost gets–you guessed it–passed on to the consumers. Almost everything that you buy is transported in some way, so this added cost affects your wallet in a big way.Rising WagesA shortage of workers has caused many companies to increase their wages. And these added wages and sign on bonuses have caused many companies to raise their costs.How can you save money with the rising cost of living?Saving money is more important now than ever. But there’s always steps you can take to get more in control of your finances. Here are our top tips for saving money and getting ahead of the rising cost of living.Make a budget. We probably sound like a broken record, but making a budget is one of the best ways to get a handle on your finances. Compare your monthly income to your monthly expenses to determine how you are faring in this economic climate. Making a list of your expenses can help you see the areas where you can cut costs and the areas where you can’t.Cancel unused subscriptions. Do you use your Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Disney+, etc? Are there any that you can part with? Try cutting back on some of these expenses first. Buy generic brands. When you go grocery shopping, skip on the name brands and opt for the generic brands. They are most likely incredibly similar and can save you a lot of money on your grocery bill.Seek out coupons. Look in the store circulars and online for coupons of your favorite items. A dollar or two here and there can save you a lot in the long run.Shop on Wednesdays. Most grocery stores release their circulars on Wednesdays, so you can get first dibs on the best deals.Combine trips to save on gas. With how expensive fuel is, you want to be as efficient as possible with your car. So try to combine your errands when you can to cut down on unnecessary mileage (and tank fill ups).Carpool. If you have some local work friends, try carpooling to work. You can both save on gas prices (and also get to utilize that sweet carpool lane!)Refinance your car. Refinancing can save you money in a few ways. First of all, if you may qualify for a lower car loan APR if either your credit score has increased or if prevailing car loan APRs have decreased. Lowering your APR can add up to hundreds if not thousands of dollars in savings. But even if your APR doesn’t change drastically, refinancing can still help you save money if you change your repayment period. Lengthening your repayment period will give you more time to pay off your loan, thus spreading the payments out so they are smaller.You will pay more in interest over time, but it can give you more breathing room every month. You can also shorten your repayment period. This will make your payments larger every month but will allow you to pay off your loan sooner and save you a ton in interest payments.Switch to remote work, if possible. More and more companies are allowing you to work from home. And with the price of gas, this can be a huge perk (not to mention the time you can save every day!)Ask for a raise. Employers are aware of the increased cost of living (after all, they are dealing with it as well). So be honest with your employer and ask for a cost of living raise. They may surprise you with their response and give you the extra income you need.Look for a side hustle. There are tons of ways to earn a little extra money these days. Look into driving for a rideshare or grocery shopping for other people. A few extra hours of work a week can give you a little more breathing room in your monthly budget.Negotiate your bills. Call your providers (such as your cell provider, TV, and internet) and see if they can reduce your bills. You may be surprised by their willingness to help. You can also try to negotiate fees on your credit card and overdraft fees from your bank.Eat out less. Eating out at restaurants is more expensive than ever with the rising cost of food. If you are accustomed to eating out or ordering takeout a few times a week, try cutting back a little to stretch your budget a little further.Pay back your debt. When things are tight, paying down debt may be the last thing on our minds. But prioritizing paying past debts will help you to eliminate their obligations and free up your money faster. At the very least, be sure to be making your minimum payments.Keep your emergency fund loaded. Again, saving your money during tight times might not be a high priority. But this is when it’s most important to have a solid rainy day fund. If something goes wrong when your budget is stretched, you are less capable than ever of dealing with it. So keeping some extra money socked away is super important. (Experts recommend having three to six months worth of expenses in your emergency fund.)Invest in bonds. If you are looking for a safe place to invest your money, look into buying “I bonds”. I bonds rise and fall with theConsumer Price Index, so they are protected against inflation. They are virtually risk free and are much safer than most other investment options out there today.Those are our top tips to reduce cost of living expenses and save your money during today’s high inflation.If times are tight, be sure to make a practical budget to help you stay on track. Look for simple ways to cut your expenses, such as switching up your grocery shopping habit and refinancing your car.A car refinance is a great way to save you money every month. And with how low car loan APRs are right now, it’s the perfect time to make the switch. Get in touch with our experts at Auto Approve today–they love to save people money and can help guide you through the process of refinancing. Get started today with a free quote!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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How Can I Get Out of a High Car Payment?

05/19/2022 22:00
If your monthly car payment has you struggling to make ends meet every month, you might be wondering how you can get a lower car payment. Maybe your income unexpectedly decreased; maybe your other expenses have unexpectedly increased; or maybe you just flat out got in over your head. Whatever the reason is, rest assured that there are ways to help you get out of a high car payment! Let’s talk about high car payments and how you can get out from under them.What is a car loan?Let’s start with the basics. A car loan is a secured loan that can help you finance a new or used car. A lender will pay for your car and you will repay them in monthly installments with an additional fee, the interest, which is what incentivizes them to loan you the money in the first place. Your car acts as collateral and if you cannot repay the lender, your car will be taken away as repayment. The fact that your car acts as collateral is what makes this a “secured” loan.How are car payments calculated?Your monthly car payments depend on three main factors: the principal of the loan, the interest rate on the loan, and the length of the loan term. Car payments are calculated by adding up the principal of the loan (this includes the price of the car plus any taxes and fees, minus the down payment) plus the total interest due over the length of the loan. It is then divided up by the amount of months in the term.Why are your car payments so high?Car payments were higher at the end of 2021 than they have been in a long time. In fact, according to Experian’s State of the Automotive Industry, the average monthly car payment jumped from $567 at the end of 2019 to $644 at the end of 2021. That’s a 14% increase in just two years! The main reason that car payments are so high right now is simple: cars are just more expensive today than they were a few years ago. Much of this increase in price is a result of the infamous computer chip shortage: a shortage in computer chips meant that cars were (and still are) taking longer to build. This increased demand and in turn increased prices. But putting the cost of cars aside, there are a few other reasons that your car payments might be so high:Your interest rate is high. Your car loan APR could be high for a number of reasons. Maybe the prevailing market rates were high when you initially financed your car (but they are currently very low!. Maybe your credit score wasn’t so hot when you initially financed, or your income was notably less. All of this can lead to higher car loan APRs (and therefore high monthly car payments).Your loan term is short. The shorter your loan term, the less time you have to pay back your loan. And although you will save a lot in interest by having a short term loan, you will have less time to pay off the principal. This means that your payments are compressed and therefore much higher per month.But whatever the reason is, fear not! We have some helpful tips on how you can get off the hook for your high car payments and help you secure lower car payments.  After all, we could all use some extra money in our pockets, right?What can you do to get out of a high car payment?Talk to your lender (Before you miss any payments)The first step you can take is to simply talk to your lender. Communication is so important, and if you are upfront and honest with your lender, they might be willing to work with you. The lender may allow forbearance, where they will temporarily reduce your payments (or even put a temporary pause on repayment). Be sympathetic in your plea: they may surprise you with their leniency. Sell your carIf your money issues aren’t a temporary issue, a pause on repayment will probably not help you a whole lot. Your car might simply be too expensive for you. And if that’s the case, selling your car might be a good option for you. The following may help you get the best price for your car:Understand and research your car’s valueCollect your car’s paperwork and service recordsPerform any maintenance that may be neededThoroughly clean your car, outside and insideAdvertise widely, both online and in your communitySet up a safe place for people to see your car and test driveSelling your car can be a great way to get those pesky monthly payments off of your back. But remember: you most likely still need a car to get around. Be sure you can find something that is within your budget before you sell your only way to get around.Refinance your carAnother great option to to get a lower car payment is to refinance your car loan. Refinancing is when you pay off an existing loan with a new loan, one that ideally has better terms. So if your car loan APR is too high or your repayment period is too short, refinancing is the best option for you to get better terms. Here’s how to know when the time is right to refinance:The market rates have decreased. If the prevailing loan rates have decreased since you initially got your loan (which they most likely have), you may be able to qualify for a lower car loan APR. (Pro tip: refinance soon before the rates go up again! Refinancing is all about striking while the iron is hot)Your credit score has increased. If your credit score has improved since you initially financed your car, you may be able to qualify for a lower car loan APR. Your credit score is the single most important factor that you can control when it comes to the interest rates you are offered. If your credit score hasn’t improved but refinancing still sounds like a good option to you, spend a few months focusing on improving your score before you apply: it can save you a boatload of money in the future.Getting a lower car loan APR can save you a lot of money over the length of your car loan. But be wary of refinancing if any of the following apply to you.You have less than two years left on your loan. Since car loans are front loaded amortized loans, you pay off most of the interest in the beginning of your loan and most of the principal towards the end of your loan. Therefore as you have less and less time left on your loan, you are paying less and less interest. Because of this, refinancing is less and less beneficial as more time goes on.You’ve had your existing loan for less than six months. Experts recommend waiting at least six months (if not one year) to refinance. That’s because it generally takes that amount of time for your credit score to bounce back after the hard inquiries on your credit report.Your existing loan has prepayment penalties. Many loan contracts have prepayment penalties built into them. These penalties are meant to discourage people from leaving their contracts early. Afterall, they make less money on interest if you jump ship. So before you get too far into refinancing, be sure to check your current loan’s contract to make sure that any penalties will be outweighed by the amount of savings that refinancing will provide.So, should you refinance your car?Refinancing is a great way to ensure lower monthly car payments. To be sure that you get the best car loan APR possible, use a company that specializes in auto refinancing, like Auto Approve. We have relationships with lenders all across the country, which means we can secure you the most competitive rates out there. But don’t just take our word for it–with a 96% would recommend rating on LendingTree and an A+ rating on Better Business Bureau, you know our customers are satisfied!Those are our top tips for getting out of high monthly car payments.Saving money is more important than ever nowadays. And refinancing your car is an easy and effective way to cut costs and get lower car payments every month so that you have more money to spend on things that matter. So don’t wait to cut costs – get started today with Auto Approve!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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Freeing Up Money for Your Summer Vacation

05/19/2022 22:00
Memorial Day is just around the corner, and we all know what that means: summer is almost here! Which also means that summer vacation is on everyone’s minds. But with the cost of everything creeping higher and higher thanks to recent inflation, the cost of summer vacation is also on everyone’s minds. So today we are talking about how you can free up some of your hard earned money and use it to relax.Here are our top seven tips to free up some money for your summer vacation.Tip #1: Create A Vacation Savings Account and Firm Vacation BudgetPlanning for your summer activities is the key to success. Creating a separate account that is just for your vacation spending can help ensure you have enough funds for whatever your vacation plans are. First, decide on the basics of your vacation: the what, the where, and the when. Then do your research. Set aside a few hours a week to do research and make sure you have a good sense of the costs of your desired vacation. And always add a few hundred dollars as a buffer. Remember: emergencies happen on vacations as well.Now that you know how much your vacation will cost, you can create your savings goal.Modify your existing budget to include your vacation savings account. (You have an existing budget, right? If not, be sure to create one using our tips here). Make sure your vacation savings are separate from your rainy day fund – you never want to sacrifice your emergency fund for some fun in the sun. Based on the time you have until your vacation, you can determine how much money to set aside every week to ensure you have enough saved by the time your vacation rolls around.Be sure to budget for the following for any vacations:Round trip travel expensesLodgingLocal transportationMealsActivities Souvenirs/ extra spending moneyCreating a budget for your vacation is key to making sure you have the necessary funds to enjoy your vacation without sacrificing your financial wellbeing.Tip #2: Edit Your SpendingGo through your personal budget carefully and see what you can edit out. Are there subscription services you don’t use? Cancel them. Do you buy brand names at the grocery store? Try switching to generic. Do you use coupons? Go online to find deals on your favorite products.Here are a few other tips to cut your spending:Use store rewards cards for extra savingsCook at home more oftenCombine trips out when possible to avoid extra mileage (and extra gas)Find a cheaper cell phone planShop second handReduce your utility use (such as electricity and water)Ditch your cable plan or satellite dishThese are all small changes that can result in big savings. Get creative when looking at your budget and look for other ways to cut costs and in turn save for your summer vacation.Tip #3: Set Up An Automatic Transfer To Your SavingsOnce you have your vacation savings account set up, you know how much money you need to save. Adjust your direct deposit to allocate some of your paycheck to your vacation fund. Even if it’s just a small amount of your paycheck, it can add up over the weeks and months.Tip #4: Refinance Your Car LoanRefinancing your car loan is a great way to free up some money for your summer vacation. You can save money by:Refinancing to a lower car loan APR. If our credit score has improved since your initial car loan, there’s a good chance you may qualify for a lower car loan APR. You may also qualify for a better APR if the market rates are lower than they were when you initially got your car loan (and since we are still seeing historic lows for car loan rates, the market rates are most likely lower).Shortening your repayment period. By shortening your repayment period, you will pay less interest overall in the life of your loan. Your monthly payments will increase, but you will be saving money overall.Lengthening your repayment period. By lengthening your repayment period, you will decrease your monthly payments. You will end up paying more money over the life of your loan, but you will save money in the short term, money that you can put towards your summer vacation fund.If refinancing your car sounds like a good option for you, the experts at Auto Approve can help you get started! We have relationships with lenders across the country and can secure you the best car refinance deals possible. Tip #5: Count Your PenniesLiterally! Saving all of your change may seem old fashioned, but saving up your change can result in some real money. Whether it’s your childhood piggybank or a jar on your dresser, have a spot where you can keep all of your loose change and exchange it at your bank before your vacation.Tip #6: Book Ahead Of TimeIf your vacation involves airfare and hotels, be sure to look for reservations well ahead of time. The earlier you book your flights and hotel, the better deals you will secure (and the more options you will have!) To get the best deals on flights, you can set up an alert on Google Flights to tell you when the airfares are the cheapest. Flying on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday will usually get you the best rates, so try to be flexible with your travel dates to secure the best deals. To get the best deals on hotels, you can use lodging search engines like Hotels.com or Kayak.com to get the lowest rates.Tip #7: Reserve “Unexpected” Money For Your VacationWhile tax refunds and job bonuses aren’t exactly “unexpected”, they are pools of income that most people do not typically have allocated for certain things. Use these funds to pay for the vacation you’ve always wanted. Those are our top tips for saving money and having your best summer to date.Summer is just around the corner which means it's crunch time when it comes to financing our big plans. We hope these tips can help you loosen up some space in your budget so you can fully enjoy the sun and fun the summer brings!Refinancing your car loan is a great way to save hundreds (if not thousands!) of dollars per year, so be sure to contact Auto Approve today to start saving. Just think of the amazing vacation you could pay for simply by refinancing your car! So don’t wait – get your free quote today!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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What Causes Inflation?

05/18/2022 22:00
Inflation has been a hot topic of conversation lately, and for good reason. Inflation is the highest it’s been in nearly four decades, and it’s affecting every part of our day to day lives.Today’s inflation is exacerbating many people’s money issues, causing more and more strain on many household budgets and leaving many on the hunt for ways to save money. But what exactly is inflation, and why is it rearing its ugly head now?Today we are talking all about inflation – what it is, what causes it, and how you can protect your money.What is Inflation?Inflation is the increase in the price of goods over a period of time. It is natural and can be a good thing – to a certain extent. Economists believe that a little inflation signifies a healthy economy with healthy supply and demand. If consumers believe prices will rise slightly, they are more apt to spend their money at present. There is no cut and dry rule for what constitutes healthy inflation, but economists and policymakers generally accept that 2% inflation is acceptable.When inflation gets out of hand and starts exceeding the 2% mark, that’s when the economy takes more of a hit. Our current inflation rate is around 8%, quadruple what it should be. So what caused this drastic change?What Causes Inflation?Inflation has many causes, some of which are more complex than others. In general, these causes can be broken down into two categories: demand pull inflation and cost push inflation.Demand Pull InflationDemand pull inflation is when the demand for items is greater than the supply of those items. When demand gets ahead of supply, prices increase as upward pressure is applied. Here are a few causes of demand pull inflation:Marketing and New Technology. When a new product or new tech comes out, the demand usually outweighs the supply, resulting in demand pull inflation.Growing Economy. When the economy is growing and expanding, unemployment tends to drop and people have more money in their pockets. This results in increased demand for items, and therefore an increase in prices.Government Regulations. Certain government regulations, such as tax subsidies, can cause demand to rise. If that demand is higher than the supply levels, demand pull inflation can occur.Expanded Money Supply. If the Fed prints money at a higher rate than the economy is growing, then more money is in circulation. Since there is more money in circulation for the same amount of goods and services, demand pull inflation occurs.Cost Push InflationCost push inflation occurs when the cost of materials and wages increases. These costs are then passed on to the consumer, resulting in inflation. Here are a few causes of cost push inflation:Supply chain issues. When materials are scarce, the cost of the materials will increase due to supply and demand. This is one of the main contributors of our current hyper-inflation. Rising wages. When wages increase, either as a result of government regulation or as a result of competition for workers, it results in a higher cost of production. It is important to note that this is a debated area in the world of economics. Many economists believe that higher wages across the nation will cause an increase in demand that can offset inflation.Government regulations. Certain government regulations, such as building regulations and tariffs, can cause the cost of production to rise, costs that are then passed on to consumers causing cost push inflation.Change in exchange rate. If the value of the U.S. dollar loses value in relation to foreign currency, imported goods become more expensive to buy. Since most products in the United States are imported, this causes cost push inflation.Our current drastic inflation is a result of both demand pull inflation and cost push inflation. Is Inflation Good or Bad?While it a little inflation, as mentioned above, can be ok, there are definitely some downsides. Let's look at the possible consequences of inflation.When inflation occurs, it causes a decline in purchasing power. This leads to a cycle where: Consumers spend less money → Businesses cut back on investing and hiring → Higher unemployment rates and reduced spending The bottom line is that when inflation occurs, it can be hard to get out from under. But what does this mean for you? Inflation has three major effects on consumers in their everyday lives:Products are more expensive. Prices rise due to increased wages, supply chain issues, and lowered exchange rates. Money does not stretch like it used to, putting more of a strain on everyone’s budgets.Loan interest rates increase. Interest rates increase in part because of the Fed’s response to inflation. To cool down the economy and curb inflation, the Fed decided to increase the fed funds rate earlier this year. This rate serves as a benchmark for interest rates nationwide. This makes it harder and more expensive for people to buy houses, cars, and get personal loans. Returns on savings decrease. Savings account interest rates hovers just above 0%, so any interest that you might accrue is quickly outpaced by inflation. In short, every dollar matters more than ever in times of inflation. What Should You Do When Inflation is High?Budgets are tighter and uncertainty runs rampant in times of inflation. But there are some steps you can take to protect yourself from the effects of inflation and make it through these financially difficult times.Make a Budget (and Stick to It)While it’s not the most exciting task in the world, making a budget is more important now than ever. A little planning can go a long way in keeping your spending (and saving) on track. Simply follow our easy guide to budgeting to create a realistic blueprint for your finances.Determine your income.Determine your expenses.Budget for your needs.Budget for your savings and rainy day fund.Budget for your wants.Review your budget on a monthly basis to maintain.For a more in depth guide on budgeting, you can check out our blog post here. Be sure to include a rainy day fund in your budget; experts recommend having six months worth of expenses tucked away. Rainy day funds are important, even when budgets are tight (in fact, they are even more important when money is tight because you are less likely to be able to handle a financial emergency).Pay Off Your DebtsNow is a great time to focus on paying off any variable debt that you have, such as credit card debts and personal loans. Since these rates can change based on other benchmarks, it’s a good idea to pay them off so that you are not subjected to increased rates. Include this as an item in your budget to ensure you prioritize it.Look into RefinancingHigher inflation rates tend to lead to higher interest rates. Car loans are not directly affected by the fed funds rate, and the competitive nature of the car loan industry makes the interest rates more stable than rates in other industries. But chances are the rates will increase over the next few years, as we are still experiencing incredibly low rates for refinancing.  Refinancing your car to a lower APR can save you a lot of money in the long run and help you stretch the money in your budget. How do you know if it’s worth it to refinance your car loan? Easy! If any of the following apply to you, it’s worth considering vehicle refinance.If you have a higher credit score than you did when you originally got your car loan.If the trending market rates are lower than they were when you originally got your car loan.If you want to stretch out your loan payments over a longer period of time.If you want to add or remove a cosigner from your car loan.Vehicle refinance can free up hundreds of dollars in your monthly budget. And in the era of hyper inflation, that can make a huge difference in your day to day life. If vehicle refinance sounds like a good idea to you, contact Auto Approve to get a free quote today!Consider Investing in BondsBonds are a great investment to make in an inflated market because they are guaranteed to keep pace with inflation. Since they are fixed rate investments, they are adjusted for inflation, making them a safe investment in uncertain times. Consider an I-bond, which can be cashed out after a year, or a Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities bond (TIPS), which can be cashed out after two years.And that’s everything you need to know about inflation.We hope these tips will help you navigate the waters of our inflated economy. Understanding how inflation works is important because it can help you protect your money and your investments. Inflation changes how we think about our money, making it a time to hold off on riskier investments and instead prioritize budgeting, saving, and cautious investing.Refinancing your car loan is a great way to save some of your hard earned cash. If rates have dropped since you initially took out your car loan (and they probably have), now is a great time to consider refinancing. Get in touch with one of our refinance experts at Auto Approve today to start saving today!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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Is it Worth Refinancing a Car for 3%?

05/12/2022 22:00
When the market rates are as low as they have been this year, everyone starts talking about refinancing. And for good reason – after all, refinancing your car loan can save you a lot of money. But how do you know the time is right, and when is it worth it to refinance your car? Is there a magic APR that will make refinance a good idea? Right now, rates are beginning to go up, but you may still be able to save if you refinance your vehicle now.Here’s how you can decide if refinancing your car loan is worth it.What happens when you refinance a car loan?Refinancing a car loan is when you pay off your existing car loan with a new loan, ideally one that has better terms. If you qualify for a lower car loan interest rate, this could save you a lot of money over the length of your car loan. When you refinance, you can not only change the car loan APR you are paying, but you can also change your repayment period and add or remove a co-borrower.What is a good car loan APR?The easy answer to this question is that a good refinance APR is an APR that is lower than what you are currently paying. But we can look a little deeper at these numbers. Here are the average car loan rates offered based on credit scores from the last three months of 2021:Exceptional Credit (800-850): 2.47%Very Good Credit (740-799): 3.51%Good Credit (670-739): 6.07%Fair Credit (580-669): 9.41%Very Poor Credit (300-579): 12.53%Now let’s look at the average car loan rates offered based on credit scores from the last three months of 2019:Exceptional Credit, (800-850): 3.82%Very Good Credit (740-799): 4.75%Good Credit (670-739): 7.55%Fair Credit (580-669): 11.51%Very Poor Credit (300-579): 14.25%Comparing these numbers to years before, we can see that car loan APRs have dropped significantly in just two years. A drop of 2% can save you a lot of money in the long run. But don’t take our word on it; let’s do some math.Say you have a car that you purchased for $35,000 at 5% APR over a 6 year term. You would be responsible for $5,584 total in interest, and your monthly payments would be around $564 per month. After two years, you would still have a balance of about $21,464, after paying $2,795 in interest alone. But let’s say you choose to refinance. You are able to secure a loan for the remaining principal (using an amortization table shows us that the remaining balance of the principal would be $25,394) for 3% over the remaining 4 years. The total amount of interest due over the remaining four years would be $1,586. Total interest due from original loan: $5584Total interest paid to original loan: $2795Interest that would be due without refinancing: $2789New Interest amount due with refinancing: $1586Savings from refinancing: $1203So, is it worth refinancing a car for 3%?Resoundingly, well, YES! Refinancing for just a few points lower in our above example saved our hypothetical customer $1200. Keep in mind, the better your credit score is, the better car loan APR you will be offered. So if your score has increased since your initial financing, there’s a good chance you can qualify for even lower car loan APRs.When is the best time to refinance a car loan?There are times when refinancing makes sense, and times when it doesn’t. Here’s how you know if the time is right to refinance your car loan.Your credit score has improvedIf your credit score has improved, now is the time to refinance. You have a much better chance of securing a lower car loan APR if your score has increased. With the brackets above, it’s clear that car rates become lower and lower as you go up in credit brackets. At the end of 2021, raising your credit score from “good” to “very good” reduced the average car loan APR by over 2.5%. So how do you know if your credit score has improved? Your credit score depends on the following categories:Payment History (35%)Accounts Owed (30%)Length of Credit History (15%)Credit Mix (10%) New Credit (10%)The most important factors in your credit score are your payment history and your accounts owed. If you have been more consistent with on time, full payments, your credit score may have increased a good deal. If you have paid down some of your debts and lowered your credit utilization ratio, this also may have increased your credit score significantly. You can read more tips on improving your credit score here.You should check your credit score often, and not only when you are looking to make a financial move. Get in the habit of checking your score every few weeks. You should also get into a routine of checking your credit report. You can get a free copy once per year from each of the three major credit agencies: Experian, Transunion, and Equifax. Be sure to review it thoroughly to make sure there are no errors or mistakes. Catching errors on your report can bump up your credit score significantly as well.The market rates are lower than when you originally financedAs we’ve seen, the market car loan interest rates in 2022 dipped lower than ever, so chances are they are lower now than when you originally financed. If you financed your car in 2019 and had good credit, the average APR offered was 7.55%. Car loan APRs for good credit scores were around 6% at the time of writing this blog. You need more breathing room every monthIn addition to saving you money in interest, refinancing your car loan is a great way to free up some extra money every month, even if you don’t necessarily qualify for a lower car loan APR. When you refinance, you can change the terms of your repayment, including the repayment period. By stretching out your repayment over a longer period of time, your payments every month will be much, much lower. You may end up paying a bit more over the length of the loan, but this may be worth it to you depending on your financial situation. On the other hand, if you choose to shorten your repayment period, you can pay off your loan much faster and save money overall. Your monthly payments will be higher, but you will pay less interest over the life of the loan. And these savings can add up big.You want to add or remove a co-borrowerIf you want to add or remove a co-borrower from your loan, refinancing your car loan is your best option. Since interest rates and loan terms are decided on a case by case basis and depend highly on the applicant’s financial situation, lenders will not simply add or remove someone from an account. In their eyes, they can no longer be assured that the loan will be paid back. So if you want to add or remove someone from your car loan, refinancing is your best option.Refinance sounds great! But what is the best way to refinance a car loan?The best way to refinance your car loan is to use a company that specializes in car loan refinance, like Auto Approve. Since car refinancing is our main focus, you can rest assured that we know everything there is to know about the refinance process.Car refinance sounds like a complicated, mysterious process with a lot of options to weigh. But with Auto Approve, it is actually much easier than you may think. In fact, refinancing a car is much simpler than refinancing a mortgage, and can typically be done in a few hours. All you need to do is fill out some basic information and we will shop around and get the best quotes for you to compare. We can then help you to weigh all of your offers and decide which car loan is right for you. And after you decide, we can help you with all of the paperwork (even the DMV papers!)With a 4.7 out of 5 rating on Trustpilot, our clients can testify to the ease and effectiveness of refinancing. Some of our customers report slashing their interest rates by as much as 6 percentage points! That literally translates to thousands of dollars in savings. So if you are wondering “is refinancing a car worth it?”, reach out to Auto Approve to get your free quote today!With the low interest rates available today, now might be the perfect time to refinance your car loan.Today’s interest rates are incredibly low and it’s important to take advantage of them while you can. When it comes to refinance, timing is key. So if you are thinking about refinancing your car loan, don’t wait any longer – get in touch with Auto Approve today and start saving your hard earned money! (Seriously, what are you waiting for?)GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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Factors to Consider When Choosing an Auto Refinance Company

05/11/2022 22:00
Picking an auto refinance company can feel overwhelming. With so much information out there, it’s hard to even know where to start sometimes. That’s why today we are discussing what factors you should consider when choosing an auto refinance company, and how you can make sure you get the best car refinance deal possible.Here’s everything you need to consider when choosing an auto refinance company.Where Can I Refinance My Car Loan?First things first; who can refinance my car loan? You have four basic options when it comes to a lender that will refinance your car loan: a traditional bank, a credit union, a dealership, and an online lender. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each of these.Traditional BanksThe Pros: Refinancing your car loan through a traditional bank can be relatively easy (so long as the bank of your choice actually does refinancing – some traditional banks do not offer personal loans like this anymore). Since traditional banks are so large, they can often offer the lowest and most competitive rates for your car loan refinance. The Cons: Traditional banks tend to have very strict requirements and may not be as willing to work with you as other lenders. Their applications tend to be lengthier and their credit score requirements are more aggressive. Credit UnionsThe Pros: Since credit unions are smaller, they can often work with you more to bend the application rules and requirements. They are designed to help a core group of customers, so they have more leeway than larger banks have to make exceptions. The Cons: While they will be able to work with your unique situation better than a traditional bank, you will most likely not get the best rate out there. It will be easier to secure an auto loan, but it might not be the ideal terms you were seeking.DealershipsThe Pros: Refinancing at a car dealership is incredibly easy, especially if you have your initial financing there.The Cons: Refinancing through a dealership will almost never secure you a low car loan APR. This is because car dealerships act as intermediaries and tack on additional fees to the deals that are offered by the lenders.Online Refinance CompaniesOnline auto refinance companies are probably your best bet when it comes to getting the best deal while keeping the process simple and to the point.At Auto Approve, auto refinance is our specialty. And because it’s our specialty, we make the process super easy and the point. All you have to do is fill out some basic information, and we take care of the rest. We have relationships with top lenders across the country – including a mix of banks and credit unions – so we can get you the best rates around. It takes a lot of time and research to comb through the hundreds and thousands of lenders that can refinance your car loan. So a one stop shop like Auto Approve can make your life much, much simpler by handling all of that legwork for you. And bonus: we even handle the nitty gritty paperwork for you (yes, even the DMV paperwork).What Factors Should I Compare When Choosing an Auto Refinance Company?When researching auto refinance companies, there are a few things you want to compare. When you have offers to compare, be sure to look at the following.The APRThe point of refinancing your car loan is to save you money, and securing a lower car loan APR is the key to that. The car loan APR you are offered will be based on: The market ratesYour incomeYour vehicleYour credit scoreYour credit score is the most important factor when it comes to the car loan APR you will be offered, so make sure your credit report is accurate and up to date and that you are making consistent on time payments to your accounts.The market rates have a significant effect on the car loan APR you will be offered as well. If the market rates are lower now than when you initially financed, you will likely qualify for a lower APR.The Terms of the Loan: Short Term vs. Long TermYou will most likely have an option for the repayment period of your loan. A short term loan is great when it comes to maximizing your savings. By having a shorter repayment period, you will pay interest over less time and therefore save more money. You will most likely be offered a lower car loan APR for a short term lease. If you choose a longer repayment period your car loan payments will be much less every month, as your payments will be spread out over a longer period of time. But you will not save as much money in the long run, as you will be paying interest over a longer period of time and you will most likely be offered a slightly higher car loan APR when compared to the short term loan.The FeesDifferent lenders have different fees that they charge to refinance your car loan. This will vary from lender to lender but may include the following:The prepayment fee. Some lenders charge fees for paying off your loan early. The processing fee. Both your current lender and new lender may charge you a processing fee.The registration fee. You may be required to re-register your car when you refinance your car loan. This will vary from state to state.The title transfer fee. Some states may charge a title transfer fee, even though the title is just moving from one lender to another. Be sure to ask your lender about these fees and be sure you understand what hidden fees may be in your agreement.The Customer RatingsCustomer satisfaction is very important when it comes to choosing a car refinance company. Are they transparent with how your payments are allocated? How is their communication? Do customers seem happy with their deals? Reading customer reviews can provide you a great deal of insight. Be sure to read it all, the good and the bad, to determine if this lender is a good match for you.At Auto Approve, we know how important customer satisfaction is. That’s why we go above and beyond to make sure each customer has a positive experience. But don’t just take our word for it. With over 2200 five star reviews on TrustPilot, you can rest assured that our clients are happy.When Should I Refinance My Car Loan?Interest rates have dropped since you initially financedIf interest rates have dropped since you initially applied for financing, you may be eligible for a much lower car loan APR. In the past two years car loan rates have dropped drastically, so chances are you can be saving a lot of money every month by refinancing your auto loan.Your credit score has improvedIf your credit score has improved since your initial financing, you may be eligible for a lower car loan APR. Sometimes the difference of ten or twenty points can be the difference between a good car loan APR and a great car loan APR. And that can translate to saving hundreds of dollars. Check your credit score and credit report to see how you compare.Your debt-to-income ratio has improvedYour debt-to-income ratio can also affect the car loan APR that you are offered. Whether your income has increased or your debts have decreased, this can help you to secure a better car loan APR.You got into a bad deal in the first placeIf you got talked into a bad financing deal in the first place, it’s probably time to refinance your car loan. Dealership financing is notoriously predatory, so if a smooth talking salesman talked you into a high APR or unfavorable repayment terms, refinancing your car loan is probably a good bet.You need extra money every monthIf things are a little tight every month, refinancing your car loan can give you a bit of breathing room. You can reduce the APR you are paying, which can save you money every month. You can also change your repayment terms when you refinance your car. By stretching out your repayment period over a longer period of time, you can reduce your monthly payments by hundreds. You may end up paying more in the long run, but it might be a good option for you if your budget is tight.And that’s everything you need to think about when choosing an auto refinance company.There’s a lot to think about when it comes to refinancing, and deciding which company is the best for your car loan refinancing can feel overwhelming. That’s why choosing a company that specializes in car loan refinancing can make the process much easier. All you need to do is fill out some information, and we can handle the rest. So don’t wait any longer – get started with Auto Approve today and discover how much money you could be saving!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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How Can I Lower My Car Payment?

05/09/2022 22:00
Times are hard right now for many people, and the ballooning inflation we are seeing doesn’t seem to be letting up. It leaves many people to wonder, “how can I save some money” – and specifically, “how can I lower my car payment?”If you are like most people, you are probably overpaying on your car payment every month. In fact, by the end of 2021 the average car payment was over $640 per month. That’s over $7500 per year, not including insurance, gas, maintenance, etc. Long story short: owning a car is very expensive, especially in 2022.But fear not – today we are talking about how car payments work and how you can get lower monthly car payments.Here are our top tips to help get a lower car payment.How are car payments calculated?In order to determine a car payment, you will need to know the following information:The cost of the car, also called the principalThe term of the loan The interest rateSales taxAdditional feesYou can go online and find a car payment calculator that will help do the heavy lifting for you. For example, say you are buying a $30,000 car with a $5,000 down payment. You have a 5 year loan at 4.5% APR with 7% sales tax and $300 in fees. Total Loan Amount: $27,400 ($25,000 cost of car + $2,100 tax + $300 fees)Total Cost of Interest Over 5 years: $3,2429.12Total Cost of Car: $35,649.12Monthly Payments: $510.82The monthly payments are divided between the principal balance and the interest on the loan. Car loans are front-loaded amortized loans, which means that towards the beginning of the loan, more of the payment goes towards the interest on the loan. Towards the end of the loan, more of the payment goes towards the principal. A car payment amortization schedule can help you keep track of how your payments are divided. A car payment amortization breakdown for our above example shows how car payments are divided between principal and interest:Year 1Beginning Balance: $27,400.00Interest: $1,130.73Principal: $4,999.11Ending Balance: $22,400.91Year 2Beginning Balance: $22,400.91Interest: $901.07Principal: $5,228.77Ending Balance: $17,172.15Year 3Beginning Balance: $17,172.15Interest: $660.86Principal: $5,468.98Ending Balance: $11,703.19Year 4Beginning Balance: $11,703.19Interest: $409.62Principal: $5,720.22Ending Balance: $5,982.99Year 5Beginning Balance: $5,982.99Interest: $146.83Principal: $5,983.01Ending Balance: $0.00Early on in your loan, you are paying more in interest, and later on you are paying more in principal. But the monthly car payments will stay the same every month.What is a good APR for a car loan?Your monthly car payments are primarily dictated by your starting principal, car loan APR, and term of repayment. While the starting principal and repayment term are up to you, you will need to shop around for the best car loan APRs. The car loan APR you are offered will be based on the following:Prevailing market ratesYour credit scoreYour debt-to-income ratio Your loan termIs it a new car or used car (used car loan rates tend to be higher than new car rates)The rate you are offered depends a great deal on your credit score. The higher your credit score is, the lower the car loan APR. Credit scores are broken down into the following categories:Exceptional (Super Prime): 800-850Very good (Prime): 740-799Good (Near Prime): 670-739Fair (Subprime): 580-669Very poor (Deep Subprime): 300-579In the last quarter of 2021, the average car loan APRs of each category were as follows:Exceptional (Super Prime): 2.47%Very good (Prime): 3.51%Good (Near Prime): 6.07%Fair (Subprime): 9.41%Very poor (Deep Subprime): 12.53%The interest rates for those with very poor credit were about five times the interest rate for those with exceptional credit. And that can add up to a lot of money over the length of your loan.How to get a lower monthly car payment before you buyTo avoid having high monthly payments from the beginning, you want to do your research ahead of time. Follow our tips below to stop high monthly car payments before they even start. Make a down paymentMaking a down payment will reduce the total amount of your loan, your principal. The larger the down payment, the lower your monthly payments will be. Aim to pay at least 20% of the total cost as a down payment. This will also reduce the chance of your loan becoming underwater (when you owe more on your car than your car is worth).Shop and compareShop around for the best deals on the car you want. The lower the sticker price is on your new car, the lower your monthly payments will be. Be sure to look at Kelley Blue Book and Edmunds before you even step into a dealership so that you know how much money the car you are interested in is actually worth. It’s easy to get talked into a bad deal by a smooth-talking salesman, so do your homework beforehand.Choose a longer repayment termSelecting a longer repayment term from the beginning will result in lower monthly car payments. But remember: the longer your repayment term, the longer you will be paying interest. This can add up to a lot of money by the end of your loan.Make sure your credit is in good shapeTo ensure you get the best car loan APR offers in the first place, make sure your credit score is in good shape from the beginning. Request a copy of your credit report and review thoroughly for errors or mistakes.Commit to making consistent, on-time and full payments to increase your score.Pay down any large debts that may be skewing your credit utilization ratio.Avoid opening any new accounts or triggering any hard inquiries in the year leading up to your financing. Working on your credit score can save you a lot of money in the long run and is something you should take very seriously. Bumping your score up can result in hundreds if not thousands of dollars in savings.How to get a lower monthly car payment after you buyIf you are overpaying on your monthly car payments, here are our top tips to lower your payment.Refinance your car loan to a lower APRRefinancing a car loan is when you pay off your existing loan with a new loan. If you can secure a lower APR, this can save you a lot of money. You may find a lower car loan APR if:The market rates have decreasedYour credit score has improvedYour debt to income ratio has improvedAverage market rates have dropped significantly in the past two years, so chances are you will find a lower car loan APR, even if your credit score hasn’t improved much.Refinance your car loan to a longer termIf you are currently on a shorter term loan (say 36 months), refinancing your car loan to a longer term can drastically lower your monthly car payments. Talk to your lenderIf you are struggling to keep up with monthly payments, try talking to your current lender about your situation. If your credit score has decreased or your current loan’s prepayment penalties make refinancing your car impossible, talking to your lender may be your best option. They may be able to put you on a more manageable payment plan or suggest other options to you. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau suggests asking your lender how any of these options might affect your credit.Add a co-borrowerIf your credit score isn't better than what it was when you originally financed your loan, adding a co-borrower may be a good option for you. When you refinance a car loan, you can add a co-borrower to your loan and possibly reduce your interest rate and secure better terms. If they have good credit, they will be eligible for a better interest rate. Those are our top tips for getting a lower monthly car payment.Be sure to understand how car payments are calculated before you commit to any type of financing. It’s also important to do your homework to make sure that you are getting a good and manageable financing deal in the first place. But if you already have a less than ideal car loan situation, refinancing your car loan may be your best option.At Auto Approve, we specialize in car loan refinancing and know how much money it can save you every month. We have relationships with lenders across the country and can help you start saving money today. So don’t wait – find out just how much money you could be saving with lower monthly car payments. contact us today to get your free quote!GET A QUOTE IN 60 SECONDS
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*APR and Fees Disclosure: Auto Approve works to find you the best Annual Percentage Rate (APR), which is based on factors like your credit history, vehicle and desired payment terms. Fees to complete your loan refinance vary by state and lender; they generally include admin fees, doc fees, DMV and title. Advertised 6.24% APR based on: 2019 model year or newer vehicle, 730 minimum FICO credit score, and loan term up to 72 months. All loans subject to credit and lender approval.
Auto Approve has an A+ rating with the BBB and is located at 2860 Vicksburg Lane North Plymouth, MN 55447. Auto Approve works to find its customers the best terms and APR, which are based on factors like credit history, vehicle, and desired payment terms. Loan amounts, costs, and fees vary by state and lender; they generally include admin fees, doc fees, DMV, and title fees, depending on the lender and period of repayment. There is no fee to obtain a quote and all refinancing-related costs are included in the amount financed so there are no out-of-pocket costs! For more information, please go to AutoApprove.com.