What is a Car Loan and How to Finance a Car

07 September 2021
Amber Zia

A car loan isn’t as risky as a mortgage since its requirements are comparatively flexible. Know the basics of auto loans below. 

Car loan

What does financing a car mean? When the majority of people purchase a vehicle, they typically don’t have the full amount for payment. This is why they search for available funding options which pay the full amount upfront. It’s known as a car loan.

These loans are agreements with a bank, dealership, credit union, or finance company. These options lend money to the person buying the car and in return, the person will have to pay back the amount with a certain charged interest. Car loans aren’t free but they’re popular because it allows lots of people to drive cars without having to wait years to save money. 

Know what you can afford

Before applying for a car loan, decide what you can afford to pay. Keep in mind that your monthly payment amount will contain interest rate and principal. However, consider the payments or fees given at the time of purchase. This can include title fees, taxes, or down payments. It’s also useful to consider all costs of car ownership such as fuel charges, insurance, and maintenance costs. 

Shop for a car loan

You will come across tons of deals as you go from banks to online lenders to car dealerships to credit unions and automakers. Therefore, take your sweet time to shop around and observe all deals in order to score the best one. 

Get approved

After negotiating and determining the financing terms, you can officially gain the car loan. Next, you will have to sign all the paperwork and get the keys to your new vehicle. While you are in paperwork stage, it is important to read all the documents to guarantee that it only mentions the terms you have agreed to.