Great Tips to Choose a Car Loan

Every car is much more than a four-wheeled automobile. It’s owner’s glory, passion and a source of great admiration. Yes, a car is not just a means of transportation. It’s America’s pride and its ultimate ecstasy.

When one sets out to buy a car, several things are to be considered. Most people have an idea of what car to buy. But, there is confusion and dilemma when the topic of car loans comes up. This article will give you a detailed understanding of the many auto financing options available with you.

>> Money Before Everything Else <<

It is so true. You cannot venture out for buying a car when you have no idea about your finances. If you think car loans are going to do everything for you, think again. You will have to manage down payment and also ensure regular payments. Car loans are just to provide ease in buying.

Finding that perfect car loan requires you to carefully put together all your income and expenses and then preparing your budget. You will have to consider your savings and choose something that will not give you financial trouble.

>> A Plenitude Of Options <<

Everything depends on getting the information that suits your situation. So, don’t settle for the first financing option you get. Don’t just stroll into your local dealer’s office or your neighborhood bank. You must first do a complete research and analyze your condition and needs.

To help you make a good choice, here’s all the information about car loan types. Check out all the advantages and disadvantages of every option. It will help you make a wise decision.

>> Dealership Financing <<

A car loan with a car from the same yard- seems too alluring to ignore!

Most Americans choose dealership financing because it offers a one-stop solution. Dealers offer loans for new as well as used cars. You must know that most dealers are link between you and the lender. Such dealers won’t themselves lend you money, instead will sell you loan application to lenders.

This option is convenient but make sure that dealer is not charging a high interest rate. For that, you must research and be wary of any red flags. Also, don’t opt for any add-on if you don’t feel their need. It will help you reduce the cost.

>> Personal Loans <<

Banks and financial institutions offer loans for almost any purpose like buying a personal item or even a holiday trip. You can avail personal loans for buying your dream car. Now, this type of financing is useful when you need a loan for a smaller amount like $15,000.

>> Car Leasing <<

This is another option for you. When you lease a car, you only pay for the cost of using it. The biggest advantage with leasing is that your monthly payments will be significantly lower than the usual car loan payments.

You don’t have to worry about down payment and the lease agreement will get over in two-three years. You always have the option of buying the car at the end of lease agreement.

When you go for lease financing, don’t forget to negotiate the car price. Most buyers think that one must pay the full sticker price which is wrong.

>> Equity Loans <<

If you are one of those few lucky people who have sizable assets like a house, you can go for equity loans. You can avail a home equity loan by using your home as collateral.

Although the rates are lower and the interest is tax-deductible, there is the risk of losing your home.

>> Credit Cards <<

Though it may sound unusual, but there are many who opt for this method. A credit card can help you buy a car for a smaller amount like $10,000. You must have a low-interest credit card. With large competition, getting a low-cost card won’t be a trouble for you.

The only thing is that you will have to restrict other purchases on your card. Also, most credit card companies charge a 3% processing fees. If you are sure of paying this charge to the dealer, go for it.

>> Car Loans <<

This is as popular as dealership financing, if not more. In this type of loan, your car is used as collateral against monthly payments.

It is very good option if you make regular payments. The only thing that you need to keep in mind is that you won’t be able to finance a car older than six/seven years.

>> Online Car Loans <<

This type is just the blend of car loans and the internet. With technological advancements, you can get everything on the net and car loans are no different. Online lending companies have a large network of lenders and dealers who bid for your application. All you need to do is fill a simple online application form.

As there is a wide network, getting a loan is relatively easy. Also, the convenience of availing a loan without moving out of the house is very tempting.

You should only be concerned about the company’s reliability. You can check the website’s safety by going through their security certificate. Don’t go for a company that charges for loan quotes because there are many reputable sites that offer free quotes.

How To Choose That Perfect Car Loan?

Just go over with a fine-tooth comb.

Once you decide on the type of car loan and apply, it’s time to scrutinize the loan quotes. Loan payments are important but it shouldn’t be the soul of your decision. There are several factors which are equally important. Before you rush to your decision, take a look at these variables.

Loan Term

Your loan term will have a huge impact on your loan. A longer loan term will mean that your monthly payments are smaller, but you may eventually be paying more interest rate. It is advisable that your term should be in accordance with the useful life of the car. Your loan should get over before the life of car to avoid the risk of an upside-down loan.

Interest Rates

Interest depends on factors like the loan amount, loan term, credit score, financial condition, etc. One important tip to lower loan rates is by making a substantial down payment. This will reduce your loan amount and also instill a sense of faith in the lender.

APR

The Annual Percentage Ratio will tell you about the total cost of the loan including all fees and charges. Most borrowers consider just monthly payments. But, it is impossible to compare different loan quotes with different loan terms. When you compare two loan quotes with the help of APR, you are taking into consideration all the variables.

Clauses

You must compare loan quotes on the basis of the clauses in the loan agreements. Few lenders prohibit you from refinancing your car loan for the first few months. Some lenders also offer zero percent financing for the first few months only and then charge a floating interest rate. So, check for such clauses which may cause problem in the future.

Charges And Penalties

Check the loan contract for origination fees, annual charges, prepayment penalty and penalty for missing out on a payment. Choose a lender that has lesser fees and doesn’t charge you for making early re-payment. The latter will be useful if you decide to refinance your loan.

Payments

It is important to know whether you are supposed to make payments weekly or monthly. If you can afford monthly payment, don’t consider any other option. This is so because it will give you the choice of making regular payments without any undue financial restraints.

Once you compare quotes on these factors, you will definitely get a winner. Choosing your car loan by this method may take time but what matter is the ease in making payments. Every factor is important in making your life simpler and your car buying experience more pleasurable. So, memorize these important tips.

Owing a car is a dream for many, but one who takes a wise decision can fulfill it in true sense. Car loans won’t be a trouble if you consider your needs and financial condition. Remember a good decision comes with a thorough research process.

All the best for choosing the best!

How Do Banks Exert Control and Influence on Business Loan and Working Capital Facilities

Most business owners and financial managers aren’t necessarily aware of the methods and factors that banks utilize to control and monitor their loan facilities with commercial customers. We are talking about two types of loans essentially, term loans, and also operating lines of credit, also called ‘revolvers’ by some. (Revolver – the credit line revolves, it goes up and down on a daily basis…)

Banks essentially use several different strategies to ensure they have maximum control and influence on the business borrower.

Banks often are reluctant to allow maximized borrowing from other parties for asset growth. Why? This is because when a customer has to service the additional non- bank debt they might be unable to service the banks loans. Banks have very well known and published cash flow ration and they want to ensure their customers can meet these rations on the bank debt. Naturally if a bank feels comfortable with a customer growth and cash flow profits they are much more likely to approve a third party financing. If they aren’t comfortable they may ask the company to at lease temporarily defer bonuses, dividends, or, in the case of a public company, a stock repurchase.

Bankers of course usually know the company very well, as a relationship and financial history has developed over the years. They will often want to have input into the company’s growth direction in an effort to ensure the customer is not going down a path that in their opinion, might lead to liquidity loss or profitability loss. This sort of ‘advice’ from a bank can come in a number of manners, one of which is simply providing a debt to equity ratio that cannot be overlooked by the customer.

Business owners know that it is no ones best interest for the bank to trigger a default on a loan – it’s clearly a case where both parties have a lot to lose. However if a bank feels on a number of fronts that the customer is spiraling downward they will take steps to ensure their loans are provided for.

What are some of those downward spiraling scenarios? They include:

Cash flow deterioration

Asset erosion

Working capital problems

Again, the worst case scenario is the bank ‘calling the loan ‘. We have agreed this benefits no one, so the bank usually prefers (as does the customer!) to return to the bargaining table. At this time business owners are strongly cautioned to prepare a corrective action scenario to satisfy the bank. It is at this time that the bank normally considers an interest rate increase, or more restrictive covenants.

We also want to point out to business owners that banks want to ensure that there is a proper ‘ matching ‘ of financing. By that we mean that the bank does not want the customer to borrow short term to finance long term scenarios. For this reason working capital ratios are put into place.

Finally banks utilize whets known as a ‘negative pledge ‘clause. This forces the company to consult the bank when pledging other assets or selling unencumbered assets. If such sales are agreed to the proceeds are usually used pay down the bank.

In summary, it benefits business owners to understand the whys and wherefores of bank strategy and influence and control around business loan scenarios. Understand where the bank is coming from allows a business owner to more proactively plan financing growth with a view towards successful financing.

Small Business Loans and Bad Credit

Do a search about business loans and bad credit and you will see result after result touting some way or another where you can fool the banks and lenders into giving you a business loan.

Follow those results and for the most part you will only end up poorer (paying those companies or individuals a fee) and still not getting the business loan you want or need.

Banks and lenders use credit histories and credit scores as a time saving measure. You request a loan, they pull your credit. If your credit is bad or below their threshold, they don’t waste anymore time on your deal request and can move on to other deals that have a better chance of getting funded.

I deal with entrepreneurs everyday that complain about how their bank or a private lender just won’t look at their deal because they have bad credit. I constantly hear the same thing:

“Why won’t they just look at the merits of my business and not focus so much on my personal credit as it is my business that will be paying the loan back!”

My answer is always the same:

1) That is how the financial markets work, and

2) If you want to get approved based solely on the merits of your business then find the right business loan that focuses only on the merits of your business.

Sounds simple and it really is.

Yes, there are business loans (and other types of business financing) that either do not look at your credit at all or if they do, do not place much weight on it (great for those credit scores that are borderline).

Let’s look at three examples:

1) Accounts Receivable (Invoice) Factoring: Your business writes an invoice for goods already shipped or delivered to your customer but you have to wait 10, 30, 60 days or more to get paid. Then, factor those invoices and get your cash today so that your business can pay its employees, suppliers or to complete that next job.

As your business has already completed the job and shipped the goods and is merely just waiting to get paid, the lender has no reason to even consider your credit history. Instead, they focus on the next cash event – which is your customer paying you. If your customer shows a strong promise to pay as agreed, then your loan request should be approved (without pulling your personal credit history).

2) Purchase Order Financing: Your business has already won over the customer and you have their job order in hand only to realize that your business does not have the cash on hand to purchase the materials and labor to complete that order.

Factor that job (purchase) order for up to 100% of the cash you need to complete it. When the job is done and you collect payment from your customer, you pay back the advance and keep the profits to be plowed back into the next deal.

Again, since your business has already demonstrated that it can win business, the focus of this loan approval is not based on your personal credit or the cash position of your company but in the next cash event – when your customer receives the completed order and pays you.

3) Business cash Advances: If your business accepts credit card payments from its customers, then your company could qualify for a business cash advance; based on your company’s ability to continue to get customers to purchase your goods and services.

Based on past results (your business’s past results and not your personal credit history), your firm could receive a cash advance to be used as working capital to re-stock inventory, pay employees, generate new business or whatever your business so desires.

And, since repayment of this advance (loan) is based on future cash flow from your credit card paying customers, these lenders are not that concerned with your personal credit scores but more concerned about your business’s ability to keep getting those paying customers in the door (which is what you wanted – a business loan based on your business results and future potential and not your past credit mistakes).

Now, while Business Cash Advance lenders place the onus of their loan/advance decision on your future cash flow potential, they may still pull your personal credit. The reason is that should your business shut down tomorrow, they want to be assured that you will still pay them back.

But, if your credit score is border line or just a bit below what a traditional lender requires, then a Business Cash Advance just might be the financing kick start your business needs.

These small business financing options were designed for businesses and business owners just like you – whether it is bad credit or a lack of cash flow or whatever reason a traditional lender states why they declined your loan request.

Thus, if you are one of the many that want a lender to focus their loan approval on your business and not on your credit, then seek the right business loan; a loan that has no reason to focus on your credit (as you and your business have already done the work) but focuses more on the merits and wherewithal of your company’s future potential.