Researching financing for your next car:
What you need to know
More than eight out of 10 Americans know they have options when it comes to vehicle financing and 58 percent feel informed about the auto financing process, according to a new survey.
Do your financing smarts measure up?
The survey, conducted by AWARE, a nonprofit group focused on auto financing, found positive trends among consumers regarding their future auto financing plans. The survey showed that:
67 percent plan to do more research on their financing options as they consider their next vehicle purchase, with African American (77 percent) and Hispanic (80 percent) consumers the most likely to do so.
54 percent will check their credit score before purchasing their next car or truck.
64 percent will compare interest rates from a variety of different sources.
70 percent say they will negotiate their financing on their next vehicle purchase.
"Financial literacy efforts are paying off as more and more consumers feel informed and know about their options when it comes to auto financing," said Eric Hoffman of AWARE. There's still room to sharpen your skills, however, and it may be in your best interests to do some preliminary research on vehicle financing before scribbling your John Hancock on a legally-binding contract.
Other important findings included the following:
Nearly 150 million Americans want more information from the vehicle financing industry, especially African Americans (83 percent) and young consumers between the ages of 18 and 24 (86 percent).
Nearly half of all consumers selected "negotiating financing rates" as their first or second choice for what they'd like more information about, followed by "finding good rates."
When given a choice, consumers chose the Internet as their preferred medium for receiving information on financing.