Auto Financing for First Time Buyers

There's nothing like finding the perfect car at the perfect price. From all the options, you began with has emerged a clear winner, and now you're almost ready to "sign on the dotted line." Before you take that step, though, you'll have to decide how to pay for your vehicle, and the options here can be almost as numerous as when you were looking at different car models. With this short car financing guide, you should find yourself much more prepared to make it to the finish line.

Before you arrive at the dealership, know that many of them offer online financing applications you can fill out to save yourself some time once you arrive. These allow you to put your basic demographic and financial information, so there's fewer steps to go through when you're at the dealership in person. Fill it out as completely as you can, but if you don't know something, just leave it blank.

Whether you fill the application online, or in person, though, to obtain car financing you will need your income and employment information, your total household income information, data on any debts you currently have, plus any past address, your social security number, and, in many cases, one or more references. Have all this information available when you arrive at the dealership, as they must fill out the application completely to present it to various lenders.

Speaking of lenders, another consideration in auto financing is what lender you will choose. Of course, you want to go with a lender who will give you the best interest rate, but beyond that, you want to ensure they are a healthy company financially, have easily accessible customer service, and offer competitive terms relative to other companies in the industry, even those with slightly higher rates.

Additionally, it may be beneficial for you to shop around at your personal financial institution, as well as other local banks and credit unions, to see if any can offer you a better rate than what you can get through lenders the dealer works with. Most dealers can use financing obtained from almost any outside financial institution, so have this information in hand when you arrive, to be able to compare it to the rates they present to you.

After the forms have been completed, the offers have been presented, and you've finally made the choice that's right for you, it's finally time to sign on that dotted line, get the keys, and drive off in the car of your dreams. With a few simple steps, you, too can be a financial wizard the next time you purchase a vehicle.



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