Rich Jeff




Used car loans are very useful if you can’t quite afford a brand new car, and are seeking finance for something more within your budget. Many used cars are excellent buys, particularly those less than a year old where depreciation on the new price has occurred, and you can secure yourself a next to new car for significantly less than the new price.

Finance available in the form of used car loans can be either unsecured or secured, although you won’t generally get a secured loan unless your car has been purchased from a dealer and is less than 5 years old. However, you can still get decent rates on unsecured loans, and if you use a car loan calculator to work out what your repayments will be, you will be able to determine what price you can pay for your car, based upon how much you can afford in monthly repayments.

When seeking a used car you should make sure that it is in good condition, particularly the bodywork. Engines and parts can be replaced but not the bodywork, and if that is rusted or holed, than it is going to be costly to maintain. Sooner or later you will have a lot of expensive welding work to pay for. Make sure you take the potential cost of maintenance and repairs into account when calculating your affordable payments.

Another aspect of owning a used car to take into account when considering a used car loan is that of insurance. Unless your car is less than two or three years old it might not be worth going comprehensive, and the lower your insurance costs, the more you will be able to afford for your car loan. What you should do then, is to check out the used car that has caught your eye, find out how much it will cost to insure at the level you want, and make sure that it is not in immediate need of repair.

Then figure out your maximum monthly expenditure, deduct insurance and estimated repair costs and enter that into a car loan calculator long with the price of the car and the current rate of interest. That will tell you over how many months you will have to pay the loan.

What you do then is to find a lender that will lend you that amount of money over the period that you need to borrow it. If the stated interest rate is higher, then the period will be longer, and if the rate is lower, such as for a secured loan, then the period of repayment will be less.

It is a fact that unsecured loans demand a higher rate of interest, since secured loans have the car as security, which will be taken from you if you are unable to pay. An unsecured loan is more of a risk to the lender, although they have other ways of getting their money back. It does, however, demand a higher rate of interest, and it is of extreme importance that you can pay that plus the principal amount borrowed for your used car loan.

Hence the importance of using a car loan calculator to calculate the monthly payments you will have to make. However, you can also use it to find out the total cost of your loan. This could be useful if you have the cash to pay for the car, but would perhaps rather just pay it up and keep your cash in your savings account building up interest. When you calculate how much the loan was costing as opposed to the interest you would earn keeping your money in the bank, it might shock you.

Knowing the total cost of borrowing is very useful, particularly for used car loans where you might be paying a higher interest rate than for a secured new car loan. However, if you make sure that the interest rate stays the same for the full term of the car loan, then you won’t have any unbudgeted increases that can cause problems for some people. A fixed interest rate should be the #1 item on your used car loan shopping list since it is the best security you have.

Your car loan company wants their security, so you make sure that you get yours! You might also be able to negotiate the frequency of repayments. If you get paid weekly it would likely suit you best to make weekly payments, since it is easy to forget to save the money for the loan for the end of each month.

Used car loans are available at good rates, but if you do your homework and calculate your payments using a car loan calculator, you will be able to avoid potential problems with your repayments being higher than you expected. Always enter into a used car loan agreement with your eyes wide open.