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How to refinance your car loan Part of refinancing a Car Loan This video series will help you refinance the Car Loan
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5 minutes read. Published 23rd March 2023
Authored by Rebecca Betterton Written by Auto Loans Reporter
Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She specializes in assisting readers with the ins and outs of securely using loans to buy the car they want.
Editor: Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor
Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate since late 2021. They are passionate about helping readers to manage their finances with precise, well-researched and informative facts that break down complex topics into manageable bites.
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It is not the case for everyone when they first take out the first car loan. Refinancing your car loan could be . It's about replacing the present loan with a new one with a different length, interest rate or both. A lower rate will aid in reducing your monthly payment and also the amount you'll have to pay over the course of your loan. However, to get the most benefit of refinancing, you'll require credit with good standing and a history of on-time payments. The 7 ways to refinance your auto loan Refinancing a vehicle loan is similar to applying for any other type of car loan however, there are few additional steps. Check your financial situation along with your loan documents, then find the best lender to suit your needs. 1. Decide if refinancing is the right financial move There are two main reasons to refinance: If you are able to get a lower rate or . The first is typical in the event that you took out an auto loan while you were in high debt as well as your credit rating was not high. If you've been in the market since getting your loan, lenders will likely offer you better terms, which will allow you to save money over the life of the loan. However If you think you're overstretched with your budget for monthly expenses by paying your current bill, you can refinance your auto loan for a longer period. Reextending your repayment period will lower your monthly payment however, you'll likely have to pay more in interest over time. Key takeaway
If refinancing your car will help you save money, it's likely the right option for you. If you're not able to obtain a loan, it's not a good option. Refinancing to higher interest rates can make your loan more expensive even if your monthly payments are lower.
2. Re-evaluate your current loan Most lenders have a refinance option. So, you will have to know your payment amount to determine if are eligible. It's also crucial to know exactly the amount of interest you've paid, what your monthly payment is and the total amount the loan is if you finish the entire term. Take this information and examine your current loan with the offers that you'll be receiving in the next steps. Key takeaway
Education is the key when it comes to getting the best deal. Use an to understand how much you are paying for your current loan and then compare it with your refinance options after you have applied for preapproval.
3. Check your credit score Your credit score and credit history are the most important factors that lenders take into consideration when you're applying for refinancing. If you have made smart financial decisions in the past -- and you have been making timely payments for instancethen your Lenders will view you as less risky and might offer you higher rates. Before you apply. This will assist you in navigating to lenders you can qualify for and predict potential rates. Even those who aren't eligible might still be able to qualify for a loan by finding the best lender. What is the most important takeaway
The better your credit score higher your credit score, the lower interest rate you will likely get from the lender. Your credit history can be a factor too.
4. Determine the value of your car amount of your loan isn't all you have to take into consideration when deciding to refinance. You will also want to be aware of . Resources like and allow you to estimate the value of your car easy. If you have a car that is more recent with low miles and a substantial amount of debt that is still taking several years to pay, refinancing could make you money as well as stop you from being upside-down on your loan. If it's worth less what you owe, you could have a tough time. If your car is close to being paid off, it makes less sense to refinance because interest is a tiny portion of your remaining payments. The most important thing to remember is
Knowing the value of your vehicle will help you determine whether the lenders are willing to lend you money. If your car isn't worth much, refinancing may cost you more than you'd save.
5. Find the most competitive refinancing rates . All lenders evaluate your credit score as well as your financial history and eligibility in different ways. If you choose to refinance, start with the credit union or bank that you use in other areas. Some financial institutions offer discounted interest rates to existing customers. Compare the rates offered by your current lender to gain the most accurate picture of the best lenders' rates. Once you're prepared, you should have at three lenders. With multiple preapprovals you will be able to determine which option is the best for your financial goals. What you should take away
Rates of interest vary greatly and it is advisable to compare several lenders before you make a final decision. -- but make sure to check the current institution you are with because there could be discounts available for current customers.
6. Determine your savings After shopping at rates, do the math to determine how much you would save by refinancing your vehicle loan. Make the comparison easy. Review the current loan for fees. It is not uncommon to see lenders charge fees that makes refinancing more expensive. It is also important to be clear on your goals. If you're looking to cut your monthly payment, make sure that the new loan isn't going to cost much more if you opt for . If you are refinancing at an lower interest rate, be sure you're saving enough interest to offset any fees. A shorter loan time frame is worth considering if you have extra room in your budget. The finish line will be quicker and could save money in interest, according to the terms you receive on the particular loan. Doing the math prior to the timeframe will help you see how much money the new rate will be able to save in terms of payment of interest, or monthly installments or both. 7. Get your paperwork in order The preapproval process is crucial, but it's not an end to the story. When you apply, plan to supply the lender with these documents: proof of income, which includes W-2s or your most recent pay stubs Proof of residency such as a recent utility bill or lease agreement, monthly mortgage statement or tax statement Recent proof of insurance monthly statements or insurance cards Details about the current loan (such as the balance and interest rate, loan term and monthly payment) Details about your vehicle include year model, make as well as the mileage and vehicle identification number (VIN) Make sure you review the application and all documents to make sure there are no mistakes prior to submitting. Once you submit the paperwork and receive approval from the lender and follow-up with the lenders. If you receive a check be sure your previous lender gets it and then applies it to your loan. If your lender is a new lender is paying back the previous one, follow up frequently to ensure that you don't miss payments due to clerical mistakes. The bottom line: Organize your documents prior to time to help speed up the refinancing timetable. Make sure you are prepared to contact each lender to ensure your payment and payoffs go to the correct place. Considerations to make prior to refinancing Prior to launching into the process of refinancing, make sure it's appropriate for you. Requirements for refinancing: Every lender or bank lender has their own set of criteria to determine if you're eligible for refinancing. Check to see if you're eligible paying on time for payments. The amount of time left in your loan is another eligibility requirement. The lender will typically need to see at minimum six months of payments on your loan and you must have at least six months left. Prepayment penalties: Many auto loans have clauses that define when and how you will repay the loan. Often these clauses include a , a fee assessed when you pay off the loan in advance. Not all lenders are required to charge this, however it could affect your overall savings. The remaining time on the loan If you're nearing the end the current loan It may be more sense to pay it off , rather than putting time and money into refinancing. Financial health and wellbeing: The income-to-debt ratio is among the numerous factors that are considered by lenders. The more before applying for the new loan, the greater chance of receiving favorable loan conditions. You can use an internet-based calculator that can calculate your ratio of debt to income. The bottom line : refinancing your vehicle loan can significantly impact your personal finances. However, before you sign a contract to a lender be sure to research the auto loan rates and compare the terms to the terms for your existing loan. Through comparing rates and working on improving your credit score if needed you could be able to cut down on the total amount you pay , or obtain an affordable monthly installment by changing lenders.
Authored by Auto Loans Reporter
Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She specializes in assisting readers in navigating the ins and outs of securely using loans to buy a car.
Editor: Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor
Rhys has been editing and writing for Bankrate since the end of 2021. They are passionate about helping readers gain confidence to control their finances through providing concise, well-studied and well-researched content that breaks down otherwise complex subjects into bite-sized pieces.
Auto loans editor
Up next Part of Refinancing a Car Loan
0 min read Mar 24 2023
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