About principal and interest If you purchase a new or used car with a loan, you agree to pay off the loan amount (principal) over a specified number of months. But you also agree to pay a finance charge, or interest, for the privilege of using the bank’s (or finance company’s) money for your purchase. […]

First-time car buyers are often unaware of everything that’s involved in the process. It’s not surprising because it’s not simple and not like buying anything else that we normally buy, even a house. We’ll explain it all in this quick guide to buying a car. Further details can be found in the various articles posted […]

How Are Car Payments Calculated? Car payments are based on how much you borrow, the interest rate, and the length of the loan. The more you borrow, the higher the payments. The higher the interest rate, the higher the payments. The longer the loan, the lower the payments. Unfortunately, the formula for calculating monthly car […]

How Does Car Leasing Work? Car leasing is extremely popular because it offers a more affordable method of auto financing. It allows you to have lower monthly payments than with traditional auto loans. About one out of every five vehicles driven by automotive consumers in the United States are leased. But car leasing is not […]

Refinancing your car loan can often lower your monthly payments. Auto loan interest rates are hovering at the lowest rates seen in many years. If you are currently paying a high rate, you may be able to benefit by refinancing at a lower rate. Depending on the value of your car and the amount you […]

How do I know how much car I can afford? Assuming you’ll buy with a loan, you will want to have a monthly car payment that will fit within your current income, after considering all your other expenses. Don’t make the mistake of buying based on future expectations — a forthcoming raise, a new job, […]

Figuring car payments is easy if you have the right calculator — it’s not easy math otherwise Car payment calculation is not simple math. It requires a rather complex business math formula that is not easily done by hand and most people are not capable, or not willing, to take it on. It’s not as simple […]

A Car Loan Story David, 17, recently graduated from high school, landed a good paying job, and wanted to buy a new car. His thought was that he would go to his neighborhood Ford dealer where he had been admiring a bright red Focus model that he felt he could afford, and arrange for a […]

Is it possible to get a car loan and buy a car with no credit? The answer? Yes, under some conditions. Let’s explain. It is a common situation, especially with young people who have never had a loan, never had credit cards, or never borrowed money for a car. Without a history of prior loans […]

What are the advantages and disadvantages of car leasing? Car leasing has it’s advantages and disadvantages. Here is a summary: Pros: – Get new car every 2-4 years, with latest features and safety equipment – Lower monthly payments – Usually no down payment – Car is always under warranty – Lower sales tax (in most […]

There’s one kind of car buying customer that sales people just love. They are “payment buyers.”  A car salesperson’s job is to sell cars — and make maximum profit for his dealership. The way to make maximum profit is by selling at the highest possible prices and including as many “add-on” extra items or services as possible. Some […]

Although we’ve discussed this topic previously (see Lease vs Buy), there is one aspect that we haven’t discussed and continue to hear questions about. The question is essentially this: “If a car dealer is offering a special promotional lease deal, a purchase rebate, and a low interest loan on the car I want, which one is […]