Compare car loan providers that offer online quotes
Why should I get car loan quotes online?
Comparing quotes online can give you an idea of how much you’ll need to pay each month for the car you’re interested in. It can also give you an upper hand when it comes to negotiating a better rate at the dealership since you already know what rates and terms you might qualify for.
In some cases, you may also be able to negotiate a better price on the car you’re interested in if you have financing ready to go — though it depends on the seller.
How to get a car loan quote online
To get a quote, click the Go to site button in the table above of the lender you’re interested in and follow the onscreen prompts. You’ll need to provide:
Car details. This includes the make, model, year, condition, price and where you’re buying it.
Financial details. This includes the loan amount and term you need, down payment you plan to use, your income and expenses and any other relevant financial information.
Personal details. This includes your full name, address, Social Security number and contact details.
Once you’re done filling in all of the requested information, submit your quote and wait for a response. Some lenders will respond almost immediately, while others may take a few days.
Will getting several car loan quotes online hurt my credit?
Probably not, since many lenders conduct a soft credit inquiry after you fill out a prequalification form, which doesn’t affect your score.
But submitting a full car loan application will cause the lender to conduct a hard credit inquiry that temporarily lowers your score. However, many credit scoring models consider multiple inquiries for the same type of loan within a short period of time as a single inquiry. This means that rate shopping likely won’t hurt your credit score any more than applying for a single loan. Learn all about your credit score and why it’s important here.
How to use a quote to make a decision
The main aim of getting quotes is to find a lender that fits your needs. It’s generally a good idea to compare quotes from at least three lenders before you settle on one. Key considerations to look out for are interest rates, loan terms and any fees you’ll be on the hook for.
Pros and cons of online car loan quotes
Convenient. You don’t have to move from one financial institution to another looking for quotes. All you have to do is provide the information required online and have your quote delivered to your inbox.
Easy budgeting. Online car loan quotes can help you start preparing early since you get an idea of what you’ll be required to pay for the loan on a monthly basis and in the long run.
Better decision making. By comparing quotes, you’re able to make an informed decision on the most suitable car loan provider for you.
Can be overwhelming. There are lots of car loan providers that offer online quotes, which can be overwhelming to sift through.
Potential to sign with a bad lender. There are less-than-reputable lenders online that prey on borrowers by offering cheap quotes. If you think a quote is too good to be true, it probably is.
3 things to avoid when getting a quote online
Ready to start getting quotes online? Avoid these three things:
Giving false information. All information you provide should be true and honest. Providing false details could cause a lender to disqualify your application.
Underpricing your car. Don’t get a quote for significantly less than the cost of the car you intend to buy. If you get a quote for a loan that’s the wrong amount, you won’t know how much you’ll need to pay each month — or if you’ll get approved for the actual amount you need.
Settling. Don’t settle for the first quote you get — compare multiple lenders to find the best deal for you.
Comparing multiple car loan quotes online can help you get a competitive deal when financing a car. You can find even more lenders to consider and learn more about how it all works with our guide to car loans.
Frequently asked questions
Most of the time, yes. Many lenders use the terms car loan quote and prequalification interchangeably.
No, unless a lender has told you you’re approved for the loan, getting an online quote won’t necessarily mean you’ll get the loan.
If you’re not sure how much you can afford, getting quotes before choosing a car can help you figure out what’s in your budget. But if you already have a rough idea of what you want to spend, waiting until after you find your car can help you get more precise quotes.
Matt Corke is the head of publishing in Australia for Finder. He previously worked as the publisher for credit cards, home loans, personal loans and credit scores. Matt built his first website in 1999 and has been building computers since he was in his early teens. In that time he has survived the dot-com crash and countless Google algorithm updates.
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