Cars are expensive. Hence, buying one requires a lot of research and planning. While cash purchase is simpler and cheaper than loaning as no interest is accrued, such bulk payments can often lead to financial risks. Therefore, a majority of people choose car loans to finance their cars.

But you might get overwhelmed with so many things to consider to acquire a car loan.

So, you can check the information below that could help you understand car loans better.

How does a car loan work?

When you don’t have enough cash to make full payment of your car outright, you can take a loan from a lender. Usually, the loan term ranges between 2 and 7 years.

The longer the loan term, the lesser your monthly payments are. However, you may pay a lot more due to the interest on the borrowed sum. So, it is best to know the cost you might incur for different loan periods.

Should you go for a personal loan or a car loan?

If you take a personal loan, you either have to go for a secured or unsecured loan. For a secured loan, you have to offer up collateral so the lender can claim it if you default on loan repayment.

However, for unsecured loans, you don’t have the concern of collateral but may have to worry about higher interest rates.

Opting for a car loan eliminates the risk of losing your asset as the car is repossessed if you default on loan repayments. Also, car loans are secured and offer lower interest rates than personal loans. So, you can easily qualify for car loans. However, you must understand loan terms and conditions before signing the agreement.

What is a balloon payment?

A balloon payment is a form of loan where the monthly payment amount decreases when you make a single substantial payment at the end of the loan term. So, while lower monthly payments may help you deal with your finances better, you must remain prepared for the big pay-out by the end of the repayment term.

How much should you put down as a down payment?

Down payment is what you pay upfront to secure your loan and the vehicle. Paying a higher deposit is always advantageous as it will reduce the interest rate and the amount you pay for monthly payments.

It is best to deposit at least 20 per cent of the purchase price. Also, if you own a car, you can sell it or trade it to secure the deposit amount.

What is the best loan term for your car?

The choice of the loan term will depend entirely on your ability to make loan repayments. So, you must check your finances and get an estimate of costs. Knowing your affordability, you won’t have to stretch your budget or incur high-interest rates.

How can you compare car loans?

You must have some basic information to compare car loans. They include:

The vehicle’s cost

The amount you can deposit

The sum of money for monthly repayments

Way of using the car

Financial condition

The above information can give you a head start on some loan options so you can pick the vendor that provides you with the best deal for your situation.

When you take a loan, your reliability and integrity are tested, affecting your credit score. One late payment may not make much difference, but if you make recurring defaults, it will reflect poorly on your credit history, and your future loan applications may not get approved. So, you must know what you can afford before proceeding with the loan.

Author: Jennifer Spencer

21st September 2022