San Diego County Credit Union auto loan review February 2018

San Diego County Credit Union auto loans review

If you’re local to SoCal, get a no-frills car loan with competitive rates.

So much of American life revolves around cars. Aside from a few major metropolitan areas, you often can’t get around without one.

It’s true that some people have the cash to throw down for a new car. But not so for the more than 100 million Americans who’ve taken out a car loan.

If finding a trustworthy lender is top of your list, San Diego County Credit Union’s above-table practices might appeal to you. We take a look at what SDCCU offers and restrictions you might face.

Product NameSan Diego County Credit Union Auto Loan
Max. Loan Amount$30,000
Min APR From 2.19%
Minimum Loan Term3 years
Maximum Loan Term7 years
RequirementsMust be a resident or employee in San Diego County, Riverside County or Orange County or immediate family or household member of a SDCCU member and employees of SDCCU Select Employer Groups.
  • Must be a resident or employee in San Diego County, Riverside County or Orange County or immediate family or household member of a SDCCU member and employees of SDCCU Select Employer Groups.
  • Must be 18 or older

First, do I qualify?

As with many credit unions, you must be a member ofSan Diego County Credit Union to qualify for its loans. To become a member, you must:

  • Live or work in California’s San Diego County, Riverside County or Orange County.
  • Work at an SDCCU Select Employer.
  • Belong to the Financial Fitness Association.

If you qualify, simply complete SDCCU’s online application and open a Primary Savings account.

What makes auto loans from SDCCU unique?

SDCCU is member-owned — meaning that your needs generally come first. Because there are no shareholders waiting to line their pockets, SDCCU uses any profits from fees and interest to run the institution and fund loans. This can mean lower rates for you with a more forgiving stance on low credit scores.

SDCCU has deeper pockets than the average credit union — and more money tends to result in better availability and stronger rates. It’s the largest locally owned financial institution in San Diego with 350,000 members and more than $8.1 billion in assets.

When’s the next SDCCU used car sale?

Throughout the year, SDCCU hosts enormous used car sales, that allow you to take advantage of special pricing and low rate financing options. The last sale was October 7-8, 2017 and had 600+ used cars available. The next sale will be posted on the SDCCU website on the Car Sales page.

What types of car loans does San Diego County Credit Union offer?

  • New car loans. Apply for fixed-rate term loans to finance your next set of wheels.
  • Used car loans. Take out a fixed-term rate loans to cover the cost of an older or refurbished vehicle.
  • Car refinancing. Trade in your current auto loan for a one with better rates and terms with SDCCU.
  • Motorcycle loans. New, used or off-road, fund your next two-wheeler with quick turnaround.

Compare more car loans you can apply for online today

Rates last updated February 19th, 2018

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Unfortunately, none of the personal loan providers offer loans for that credit score. If you are in urgent need of a small loan, you might want to consider a short term loan.
Name Product Product Description Min. Credit Score Term of Loan Requirements Car Loans
Apply with a simple online application to get paired with a local auto lender. No credit and bad credit accepted.
Varies by lender
Must be at least 18 years old, a US citizen with a current US address and employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income.
Auto Credit Express Car Loans
Get connected with an auto lender near you, even if you have bad credit.
Typically 3 to 6 years
Must be at least 18 years old and a current resident of the US or Canada. Must be employed full-time or have guaranteed fixed income of at least $1,500/month. Car Loans
Get up to four offers in minutes through one simple application. Multiple financing types available including new cars, used cars and refinancing.
24 to 84 months
Must be at least 18+ years old; have a Social Security number; make $24,000+/year; have no open bankruptcies.
LendingTree Auto Loans
Compare multiple financing options for auto refinance, new car purchase, used car purchase and lease buy out.
Good to excellent credit
Typically 1 to 7 years
Must be a US citizen and 18+ years old. Must have good to excellent credit.

Compare up to 4 providers

What are the benefits of getting a car loan from San Diego County Credit Union?

  • Minimal fees. With no application, origination or monthly fees, the only fee you face is on late payments.
  • Lower rates. Member-owned, SDCCU typically offers lower rates than banks.
  • Grace period. Qualify for a 90-day grace period before you start making payments.
  • Tech savvy. Credit unions are notoriously low-tech, but SDCCU offers extensive online banking and a mobile app.

What to watch out for

  • Limited availability. If you don’t live in Southern California, you’re likely not eligible for an SDCCU loan.
  • Emergencies can cost you. If you find yourself in a financial corner and unable to pay back your loan, some customers complain this lender isn’t as willing to work with you.

How do I apply?

The loan application itself is simple, but you must first:

  1. Become a member of SDCCU. Apply online if you live or work in San Diego County, Riverside County or Orange County; work for an approved SDCCU employer; or are a Financial Fitness Association member.
  2. Get a contract for your vehicle from a dealership. You’re on your own when it comes to researching vehicles and dealerships. Once there, tell the dealership that you’re financing with SDCCU. They should give you a contract, which SDCCU uses to determine your loan amount, rates and term.

With the above two steps in order, you’re ready to apply online.

  1. Go to SDCCU’s auto loans page and click Apply for a Loan.
    SDCCU apply screen image, step one.
  2. In the pop-up, indicate that you’re an SDCCU member and select the loan you’re applying for. Then click Go.
    SDCCU apply screen image, step two
  3. Set up an online account, if you haven’t already.
  4. Follow the application by filling in your personal information.
  5. A SDCCU employee will call you to discuss your options.

What documents do I need to apply?

To become a member of the SDCCU, you must provide:

  • A government-issued ID.
  • Your Social Security number.

When applying for a loan, you’re typically required to submit:

  • Proof of SDCCU membership.
  • Your car contract from the dealership.
  • Your driver’s license.
  • Employment verification — including pay stubs and tax forms.

I got my auto loan from SDCCU. Now what?

Consider setting up autopay through your SDCCU online account to avoid late or missed payments.

If you run into personal or financial problems that affect your ability to repay your loan, keep SDCCU in the loop as soon as you can. It may be willing to adjust your loan’s terms to meet your needs.

Bottom line

You won’t find anything out of the ordinary with SDCCU — and maybe that’s a good thing. Its above-board policies mean you know what you’re getting, and lower rates are a plus.

But if you don’t live in Southern California, you still have many options when it comes to a car loan. Compare the rates and terms you’re eligible for before settling on a lender.

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