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Auto Loan Rates for march 2023

Apply for auto loans from companies verified by our specialists. On 26.03.2023 you have access to 0 car loans with a low rate. Increase your chances of getting money — fill out a multi-application with a free credit rating check.

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Other types of car loans

Oliver H
Oliver H
15.03.2023 at 06:05
I was surprised that despite earning $120,000 per year, I could only qualify for a payday loan of $300...
James J
James J
28.02.2023 at 09:05
After using Advance America in Holly Hill for the past two years, I decided to try Amscot again, which I hadn't used in years...
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Asher H
Asher H
25.02.2023 at 20:25
Despite reading many positive reviews about this company, I had an absolutely terrible experience with them...
Mason S
Mason S
25.02.2023 at 04:45
As a first-time customer of this business, I had a positive experience overall. I requested a loan of $500, as I typically do with another company I've been doing business with in Daytona...
Veterans United
Isabella S
Isabella S
25.02.2023 at 02:30
Levi and his team at VU provided me with fast and professional service...
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Olivia S
Olivia S
23.02.2023 at 23:25
I strongly advise against selling your house through this company or letting a friend use their services. They will attempt to take thousands of dollars from you...
Auto Loan Rates for march 2023

What is an auto loan?

Auto loans are secured loans issued at a simple interest rate. The interest accumulates on a loan balance over the loan term. Interest rates depend on a borrower's credit score, loan term, loan amount, and the value of a car.

When choosing a car, you can avoid going to a dealership yourself by contacting a car buying service. Car-buying service is a certified representative searching and haggling for a car for you. They are experts in the field, so it can be worth going for them instead of trying to get a car by yourself. Car-buying service comes in the form of online car-buying stores, car concierges, club car-buying programs, and car brokers. Sometimes it doesn't even cost you anything when you hire a car-buying service, so consider it as a working option.

Auto loan vs. Personal loan

A borrower can opt for a personal loan to finance a vehicle, however, there are some differences.

Personal loan can be both secured and unsecured and serves multiple purposes. You can pay for personal expenses, like vacation, wedding, home renovation, as well as for a vehicle. Personal loans have higher interest rates if you borrow unsecured ones. It is also difficult to obtain these loans with a poor credit history.

If you choose to borrow a car loan, the purpose of it is strictly to finance your vehicle, so the loan amounts are compatible with a purchase price. As auto loans are secured, you will probably get a lower interest rate. However, many lenders require a down payment and your car to meet other criteria, like mileage and vehicle age.

Major types of auto loans

Car loans come in different types. So, if you decided to get a financing for a new or used car, you will need to consider what type of auto loan suits you the best.

  • Secured Auto Loan. This type uses the car as collateral, enabling the lender to repossess it if you fail to meet the repayment terms. The borrower will sign a loan agreement where the lender is stated to be a lienholder on the car's title. It gives the financial institutions a right to possession of the car until the borrower paid the loan back. Most of car loans are secured type, and you can expect lower interest rates because of lower risks for lenders.

  • Unsecured Auto Loans. These loans don't require collateral, so you will need a better credit history to prove you are a creditworthy borrower. They usually issue higher interest rates.

  • Simple Interest Auto Loans. Those are loans where interest is calculated on the outstanding principal when the payment is done. Consider the following: you pay $30,000 loan a down payment, so it gets to $20,000. Then, your interest will be based on $20,000 of outstanding payment.

  • Pre-computed Interest Auto Loans. Here, interest is calculated for the loan term and then divided into monthly payments. So, if you pay a down payment of $10,000 on your $30,000 loan, you will still need to pay the same amounts of interest.

  • Direct Financing. Banks, credit unions, and online lenders offer auto loans to borrowers so they can purchase a car from a dealership or other private party. The customer can pre-approve for a loan amount and then shop for an auto.

  • Indirect Financing. A particular dealership provides financing for a buyer by requesting a loan from a lender. The dealer can add points to a rate of a lender. Alternatively, there are lenders connected to an automaker, called captive lenders. They can offer an interest rate discount or rebates.

  • In-house Financing. It is associated with buy here, pay here (BHPH) dealerships. These dealerships both sell the car and offer loans for them. Common customers of BHPH dealerships are those with bad credit scores for higher interest rates. The borrowers make payments directly to the dealership.

  • Loans for new and used cars. New car loans have higher loan amount, as the car is more expensive. The loan term for new car loans is longer than for the used car loans. Auto loan rates for new cars are lower because of the lower risk for a lender.

  • Private Party Loans. This is financing for buyers who want to get an auto from an individual seller. Therefore, the buyer takes a loan from this private party.

  • Lease Buyout Loans. This loan allows a borrower to make payments to a lender until they own a car outright. A lessee has a right to buy a car for a determined price at the end of their contract.

What to consider when choosing auto loan

When shopping for auto loan lenders, you need to keep in mind different criteria affecting the efficiency of your loan. First, you need to decide on the type of auto loan is the most suitable for your financial situation. As you've decided on it, you need to find the auto lenders offering auto loan options for this type of loan.

Many lenders have pre-qualification for their loans. Therefore, you can learn of the loan details, like loan rates, loan amount of a specific financial institution. For pre-qualification, you need to fill in some personal and financial information. The procedure requires a soft credit check, so it won't hurt your credit score.

You need to assess the loan rates and determine whether you will be able to pay the interest back over the loan term. Some lenders require a large down payment, so the total amount of your loan can be different, and you will need to find a large sum of cash quickly. There can be car loans fees, too. They hugely contribute to the cost of the loan, and can be quite a burden.

To make a better assessment, calculate the estimated monthly payment according to the loan details.

For example, if you take a loan amount of $50,000 for a new car for the loan term of 5 years and interest rate of 5%. So, excluding taxes, you will need to contribute a monthly payment of $944 and the total interest will be $6,614.

How credit score affects an auto loan rate

Auto loan rates depend on the risk for a lender. The key criteria proving your creditworthy is a credit score. The higher credit score you have, the lower auto loan rates the lender will offer. However, there are more factors to consider.

Factors affecting auto loan rates are:

  • Credit history. Even having a high credit score, the lender still may issue a high interest rate if you have negative items in your credit report. Those are missed payments, repossessions, collection accounts, and bankruptcy.

  • Loan term. The longer your loan term, the higher the risk for a lender as you might default on your monthly payments, as well as market auto loan rates can increase. Going for shorter loan term may help you get lower auto loan rates.

  • Down payment. It can help you reduce the loan amount you need to pay back. The less you borrow, the smaller the risk for the lender. So, it may result in a lender offering you a lower interest rate.

  • New or used car. Manufacturers offer incentives for potential customer for new cars, including interest rates discounts issued through their financial institutions. Other lenders, like banks, credit unions, and online lenders, can issue competitive rate to attract borrowers. However, used car loans typically have higher interest rates and there are no incentives.

  • Income-to-debt. Your dent-to-income ratio affects interest rates in a way that a high ratio shows you can't pay back any more debt without stress for your budget.

The auto loan rates you will receive from the lenders will be expressed in the form of APR. Annual percentage rate includes the costs of interest and the fees. APRs help the lender amortize the loan cost, meaning you will pay more interest at the beginning of the loan's life that at the end of it.

To determine whether your loan offer is suitable, you can use a auto loan calculator. It determines the interest of your loan and assumes the total interest you need to pay back.

According to the report from Experian, the best auto loan rates go to the borrowers with the excellent credit scores. The average credit score for a new car loan was 732 and for a used car loan was 665 at the end of the second quarter of 2021. The best auto loan rates were offered to the borrowers with credit scores of 781 and higher. The average annual percentage rate for them was 2.34% for new car loans and 5.41% for used car loans.

How to reduce the auto loan rate

To get the best auto loan rates, you will need to have excellent credit score or otherwise improve it. You can opt to check your credit report for any mistakes if you think your score should be higher, and if there are none, you will get the idea of what you need to improve.

The most common ways to improve credit score are paying down a credit card debt, catching up on past-due payments, and limiting new credit application.

There are alternative ways to get the best auto loan rates:

  • Compare car loan offers. Pre-qualify for a car loan and assess the rates you can get. This way you can choose the lender with the best offer.

  • Get a co-singer. Creditworthy co-singer can help you qualify for a better rate. This is the person who will take your responsible to pay off the loan if you fail to do so, so it has lower risk for a lender.

  • Contribute a larger down payment. As paying more down lowers the loan amount, you will need to pay back less. This way, the lender can offer you a better loan rate, and you will save money on interest.

  • Take a shorter loan term. This will require higher monthly payments, but if you can afford them, you can qualify for lower rate.

  • Refinance. If you cannot qualify for the best auto loan rates because of your poor credit report, you can turn to refinance. Once your credit score improves, apply for car loan refinance, and choose the terms better than you have on your existing loan.

How to apply for an auto loan

If you cannot pay the total cost of a vehicle, or need only a part of the purchase amount, you will turn to either bank, credit union, online lender, or a private party lender. Once you've done checking your credit report and chose a suitable lender, you can apply for a hard check and they will start a loan approval procedure.

You will need to provide the document to prove your personality and creditworthiness. You need to be of at least 18 years old, and be a US citizen. There could be requirements for a car title, the age of a vehicle, and the mileage if you are borrowing a used car loan. The most common of them are:

  • Filled in Application form,

  • Valid ID,

  • Driver’s License,

  • Passport,

  • Tax Identification,

  • Social Security ID,

  • Work and income documents.

For instance, the requirements for a car loan provided by the Bank of America include being 18 years old or have the ability to legally contract for auto financing in your state of residence, and being a U.S. citizen or resident alien.

Once you've received a loan approval from your lender, you will need to sign the loan agreement. Check the amount, APR, fees, and the term before signing the agreement. If you set up automatic payments, some lenders can give you a loan discount.

How to repay an auto loan

To pay auto loan back successfully, you need to understand what exactly comprises the total loan amount. The loan costs are disclosed in an agreement you sign with a lender. Thus, by signing this agreement, you give your consent to all the terms stated in the paper.

Interest Costs. You will have to pay off not only the loan amount you borrowed but also all the accumulated interest. Interest can be both fixed and varied, and reassured after some period. You need to manage your monthly payment so that you can cover the interest at the end of a loan term. Sometimes loan are issued with a compound interest. Contrary to simple interest, this type is accumulated both in your principal and in previous interest. The most common costs issued with compound interest are fees and penalties.

So, if you borrow $10,000 within 5 years under 5% of interest compounded monthly, you will have to pay back $1,322.74.

Amortization on a loan is the way money is applied to the principal and interest. You can pay in fixed amounts every time, however, the amount is split differently between the interest and principal with each payment. Typically, your interest will go down over the loan term.


Additionally, there are different types of fees the lender can issue:

  • Application fee helps the lender to cover the costs of processing your application. It is usually from 1% to 5% of your loan principal.

  • Origination fee is a cost of securing a loan.

  • Late fee is the cost of your late or missed payments. They get accumulated on your interest balance.

  • Prepayment fee is the cost of paying the loan back early.

Prepayment fees, in particular, are common for car loans. This happens because lenders rely on the interest to make income. So, if you pay the loan earlier, saving yourself money on interest, the lender doesn't get as much as they estimated. Set up automatic payments, so you won't miss the payment schedule.

Though, if you don't have a prepayment fee stated in your agreement to make your loan work for you, opt to pay it off early. If you can afford to make larger payment or more frequently, it is better to contribute to shorten the life of your loan. You will not only save money but also improve your credit score.

However, if you cannot stick to the early payoff and struggle with your interest rates, there is an option to refinance your auto loan. Refinancing is when you take a new loan of more favourable terms so you can make payments towards the existing one. It makes sense in the situation of your credit score being improved so you can now secure a loan with a better interest rate, there are severe fees for missed payments, or the interest rates dropped compared to what you have received for your current auto loan. Don't hurry into refinancing if you've already paid off most of your loan, or your car is old and has large mileage.


What interest rate is good for a vehicle loan?

The average rate for auto loan is 3.86% for new car loan, and 8.21% for used car. If you compare lenders and shop around, you will be able to find the best loan options.

What is the average interest rate on an auto loan with a 700 credit score?

Credit score of 700 is the prime loan category. It means you can get a good rate if you shop around and compare offers. If you have other criteria like income or debt-to-income ratio in a good shape, you can get APR ranging from 3% to 6% for new car loan, and 5% to 9% for used cars.

How long is the average car loan for?

The most common loan term is 72 moths. It doesn't matter if you get a loan on a new or used car. Loan terms range and you can get a loan with a term from two to seven years.

Is it a good idea to finance an auto?

It is a good idea if you cannot save enough money for instant purchase, the interest rates are low, and the monthly payment won't be a huge burden on your budget.