New Auto Loans
Shopping for a new car or truck? Take a look at our exclusive auto loan rates and terms before going with costly dealer financing. Features and qualifications include:
- Financing available up to 100% of the purchase price (MSRP) of the vehicle, plus tax, title, warranty and GAP not to exceed 125%
- Terms available up to 84 months2, subject to vehicle value and credit rating
- Current year vehicles that have not been previously titled
Used Auto Loans
Found the used car you want? Drive it home with competitive used auto loan rates and terms that you won’t find with a dealer. Features and qualifications include:
Refinance Your Auto Loan
Get lower monthly payments or get better terms and interest rates when you refinance your existing auto loan. Features and qualifications include:
Buying A New Car
A few tips and considerations as you shop for a new car.
Shop in your price range
This sounds obvious, but it’s easy to let your budget creep up higher and higher when shopping for cars–especially new ones. Many dealers will offer introductory rates or low monthly payments to reel you in, but they’re not always the best option financially.
The best thing to do is decide on a price you can afford ahead of time and go to the dealership with that number. In fact, you may choose to apply for your loan up front. This allows you to go in with a number and can even give you leverage when negotiating prices. By using our auto loan calculator you can figure out exactly how much car you can afford based on the highest monthly payment you can afford.
Really get to know the cars you’re considering
You’ve probably done a lot of research on cars since you started thinking about purchasing a new one. But doing research online and getting a feel for the car in person is definitely different.
Be sure to test drive several different cars so you can get a better sense of how comfortable it is to drive in them, how well they handle different roads, how convenient interior controls are and more. Don’t be shy, either–it’s understandable to test drive a car multiple times; as many times as it takes to know it’s the right choice.
Ask about all promotions and incentives available
When it comes to larger purchases, like new vehicles, every little bit of savings can help you save money. Dealerships are constantly running special promotions on certain vehicles and they may also offer incentives for buying in a specific date range or for adding upgrades.
Review warranty and service details
One factor that can be easily overlooked is the car’s warranty. Even though it seems like an afterthought, the warranty can have a big impact on your investment over time. You should consider the warranty offers for all of the cars you’re considering and factor that into the decision. If nothing else, it may tip the scales between two cars you’re considering. Fort Lee FCU also offers warranty options. It’s a good idea to check with us to compare prices on our warranty products.
Car servicing is also important to consider. This will likely vary more between automakers but many cars will come with some type of servicing from the dealership. Whether it’s a few free oil changes or free inspections for life, this is something to look out for and even ask about at the dealerships you’re visiting.
Learn more about a New Auto Loan
Buying a Used Car
Advice as you navigate the used car shopping process.
Check the vehicle’s history & value
Used cars pose a bigger risk than new ones simply because they’re just that–used. It’s important to get a full understanding of the car you’re planning to buy so you can fully evaluate the risk of buying it. For instance, a car with many owners in a short amount of time may signal some acute issue with the car that you’ll want to avoid.
Both Kelley Blue Book and CARFAX® are reputable resources for getting a car’s history and assessing its value. Seeing the estimated value on sites like these will help you determine if the cars you’re considering are priced in an acceptable range or not. If you’re buying from a private seller, these can be incredibly helpful since you might not be able to trust them as much.
When considering the results, don’t just think about whether or not the pricing is good or the number of owners is low, you should consider what impact the car’s current status will have on maintaining over time. What may seem like a great deal now could cost you a lot of money over time.
Have someone inspect the car before you buy
Kelley Blue Book and CARFAX® are great resources to use but, whether you do that or not, it’s a good idea to have a mechanic take a look at the car in person. There are a couple risks with relying solely on those reports for your valuation of the car.
- The car may have gone through things that didn’t get reported and won’t show up in the history. These reporting services get information from motor vehicle agencies (like the DMV), police and fire departments, collision repair facilities, auto auctions, and more. But they don’t always catch every incident so it’s important to have an actual inspection of the vehicle done to make sure the car doesn’t show additional signs of damage.
- The car may be on the verge of experiencing issues. The older the car is, the more you’ll probably want to safeguard against this possibility. Many people decide to sell cars when they’re on their last leg and they may have done enough to the car so it seems better than it is while they try to sell. A mechanic will–in many cases–be able to judge the wear and tear, aging, damage and potential risks that come along with a used car.
Consider less-risky used vehicle options
Not all used cars come with tons of risk when you purchase. It’s easy to find dealerships, or even private sellers in some cases, offering reassurances with your purchase.
The easiest way to go about this is to look for certified pre-owned vehicle programs. Most dealerships today offer some version of a “certified” used vehicle. This basically means that the dealer is vouching for the car based on the previous customer taking good care of it. That status is generally achieved when the owner takes it to the dealership for all servicing.
This program helps the original owner to get a slightly better price for the car and have a familiar service provider they can trust. It helps the dealer retain the customer for servicing and have a better chance to help them with their next car. Finally, it helps the next owner see that the previous owner took care of the car and the dealership often offer a limited warranty on the car.
Calculate a loan that fits your budget.
Information and interactive calculators are made available to you as self-help tools for your independent use and are not intended to provide investment advice. We cannot and do not guarantee their applicability or accuracy in regards to your individual circumstances. All examples are hypothetical and are for illustrative purposes. We encourage you to seek personalized advice from qualified professionals regarding all personal finance issues.
All rates subject to change without notice. All rates listed above are our best rates based on approved credit; actual rates may be higher depending upon applicant's credit rating and other underwriting factors. Most loans are processed the same day as the application is received. Please contact a Fort Lee FCU loan officer for current rates and details. Membership required to apply for Fort Lee Federal Credit Union loans, credit cards, and lines of credit. Membership is open to those that live or work in the following localities: Amelia, Charles City, Chesterfield, Colonial Heights, Dinwiddie, Goochland, Hanover, Henrico, Hopewell, King and Queen, King William, New Kent, Nottoway, Petersburg, Powhatan, Prince George, Richmond, and Sussex. Non-refundable joining fee of $1 plus $25 savings (share draft) deposit refundable at account closing.
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