Car Loan Preapproval
logo

Money Matters Blog for Cinfed Members

Why You Should Get Pre-approved for a Car Loan

Better Interest Rate, Better Negotiate with Dealer


Posted on February 24, 2017
Topic Categories: Banking, Consumer Help

Why You Should Get Pre-approved for a Car Loan

When shopping for a new car, many people overlook one important step: getting preapproved for an auto loan. It’s a simple process that can make car-buying go more smoothly and save you money. 

Preapproval is a quick assessment of your ability to pay off a loan based on your credit history and current financial state. This is how it works: You visit a bank or credit union, in person or online, and provide proof of your identity — such as your driver’s license or Social Security number — your household income, and perhaps your housing costs.

The lender will likely run a credit check.
Then you’ll find out how much it would be willing to lend you and at what rate — sometimes on the spot. Here’s why you should get preapproved.


 

You can get a better interest rate.
 

If you haven’t done your homework, your dealership might try to talk you into a loan at a not-so-great rate. But getting preapproved at a bank or credit union — or several of them — means you can assess the dealership’s offer, and you don’t have to accept it. Bringing your interest rate down just one or two percentage points can save you hundreds, maybe thousands, of dollars over the life of your loan.

 

You can set a true budget.
 

Once you’re preapproved for a loan, you can plan your purchase. Use an auto loan calculator to factor in a down payment, the value of your trade-in, and your desired monthly payment. Add about 10% for sales tax and other fees. And don’t forget about insurance and the other costs that come with owning a car. Adjust your dreams - and budget - accordingly. Then go shopping.
 
 

You can better negotiate with the dealer.

Letting your dealer know that you’re preapproved shows that you’re a ready-to-buy customer who can walk away at any time. That curtails a lot of the early verbal dancing. Just announce you have your preapproval and will only talk price. Try something like this: “I’m looking for this model, in a deep blue with black leather interior and rear parking sensors.

I just stopped in quickly to find out the price I would pay after you take my car as a trade-in.” If the salesman doesn’t listen, say, “I just want to hear that one number.” It’s not rude to be assertive in this situation. 
And as you’re signing all the papers in the finance office, if a salesperson tries tempting you with an extended warranty or other last-minute add-ons, you can use your preapproval to stick to your price. 

When you’re pre-approved for a loan, you have the competitive edge in car-buying. You can say no until they say yes.


 
© Copyright 2017 NerdWallet, Inc. All Rights Reserved




CONTACT CINFED

Cinfed Credit Union
4801 Kennedy Avenue
Cincinnati, OH 45209
(513) 333-3800
Routing #242076656

MEMBER REVIEWS

They always go above and beyond at the Oakley branch and truly care about each of their members. And, I absolutely love their kids' membership program. It makes it fun for them to learn about money... 
— Courtney Snow
Just closed on a Home Equity line of credit loan, and the process couldn't have been any easier. With this I was able to pay off 2 high interest credit cards and deposited the rest into a checking... 
— Thomas
Been a member since I moved to the Queen City in 1978. Cinfed has always provided customer service that other financial institutions only dream about. Thank you for almost forty years of outstanding... 
— Tim Grabenstein
I recently became a member here at CINFED and it was the best decision I have ever made. I walked in with tears and despair and left with dry eyes, a smile, and I even received a hug from the branch... 
— Melanie
As a long time member, I have always received great service from all CinFed employees. I just wanted to say a special thank you to Dee Dee Day and Dawn Strickland. I had to make some changes to... 
— John-Member since 1990
Earlier this year my much younger sister passed away and with that many obligations were to be met by my husband and myself ..My sister was survived by a daughter and son. We have since then taken on... 
— Vonda
How lucky I am to have Liz Frey managing the office I use! I live in Florida but maintain Cinfed as my main banking office. Everytime I need special help a simple email or call to Liz and it is... 
— Debbie G
Emily Snyder took the best care of my two auto loans. She was professional, courteous and very knowledgeable of the available services for me. She went out of her way to make sure I felt like I was... 
— Sarah Amyotte
I have been member with Cinfed since 1986. The Roselawn Cinfed staff greeted the customer phone calls friendly and polite willing to help you with your needs. They have excellent customer service.... 
— Marian Dudley
I have been a member of CINFED since about 1981 when I was transferred from SLC, Utah with the US Army Recruiting Command and have always received excellent service and support . Hope Dee Dee is... 
— Robert Olguin
I have been a member at the Roselawn Branch for a long time and I couldn't be more satisfied with the customer service. No matter how often I come in with a question or issue and no matter what... 
— Andreya T Williams
I been a member since 1985 and can not imagine banking anywhere else. This credit union as taken care of my every need. 24/7 services is excellent.
— Edward, member since 1985

NOTE: You are leaving Cinfed Credit Union's web site. Cinfed is not responsible for content or security policies of this external, linked web site.