Blog Details

News & Notes

Questions about Auto Loans? We Can Steer You in the Right Direction.

Feb 18, 2020

 

Cars come in many makes, models and colors, and options for auto loans are plentiful. If you have questions about loan terms, credit scores, or preapproval, we’re here to help! Follow these tips to avoid speed bumps along the way.

  1. Should I Finance Through the Dealer or My Credit Union?

    Dealers do the paperwork for you and may offer special financing on some models. And buyers with little credit history or lower credit scores will often find dealerships more amenable to extending credit. But the choices may be fewer and the terms less favorable. By financing your auto loan through RCU during our Auto Loan Rate Sale (2/1-3/31), you can take advantage of rates as low as 2.99% APR.

  2. Know Your Credit History

    You may request a free credit report every 12 months from each of the three credit reporting agencies. It’s good to know your score, since it affects your ability to get a car loan. Reviewing your reports can also offer an early warning of identity theft. If you have a loan with RCU, you can access your credit score through online banking and our mobile app.

  3. Ask About Direct Lending and Preferred Dealer Programs

    To make the process easier for you, RCU partners with auto dealerships to offer direct lending programs. That means you can complete our application at the dealership. We regularly evaluate our preferred dealers, so you can be assured you’re doing business with a reputable car seller. 

  4. Should I Get Preapproved Before Visiting the Dealership?

    Preapproval has its advantages. You’ll have a realistic picture of what you can afford, which helps you research options within your means. That may improve your ability to negotiate and save time at the dealership, so you get the best deal in a reasonable amount of time.

  5. How Much Should I Spend?

    Always the big question. We’re fans of the 20/4/10 rule: Make a down payment of at least 20 percent, finance for no more than four years, and keep total monthly expenses—including principal, interest, and insurance—to no more than 10 percent of your monthly gross income. It’s easy to get caught up in the car-buying experience. Set the emotions aside and be practical to avoid overextending yourself.

Buying a car is a big decision that may feel intimidating or confusing. By taking the time to look at resources and options, you’ll feel much more confident in your purchase.

Check out our Financial Wellness Center to learn more.

 

CATEGORIES:
  • Blog
  • Financial Wellness

Join RCU Today

RCU Logo

Welcome!

Get started now

Join Now 

If you're interested in opening a Business, Trust, or other type of account, please visit your nearest branch.

Redwood Credit Union serves anyone living, working or owning a business in California’s Northern Bay Area, which includes the counties of Sonoma, Marin, Napa, Mendocino, Lake, San Francisco, Contra Costa and Solano. We look forward to serving you!

Choose Account Type

RCU Logo

Welcome!

Choose the Type of Account You Wish to Open

Personal       Youth

 

If you're interested in opening a Business, Trust, or other type of account, please visit your nearest branch.

Login Help

Need Help Logging in to RCU Online?

If you’ve forgotten your RCU Online banking Username, password, or other login information, follow the directions below to get help now.

Sign up today for RCU Online banking.

enroll now

Still need help?

Contact our Member Service Center at 1 (800) 479-7928, Monday through Friday from 7am to 8pm or Saturday from 8am to 5pm PST.