5 Money Questions to Ask Your Fort Lauderdale Car Loan Lender

Category: Auto Financing
Published: Monday, 04 January 2016
Written by Super User

We Florida Financial serves individuals and small businesses in 43 Florida counties and offers a full range of affordable financial services to meet the needs of our diverse communities.

From water taxis to trolleys, theres more than one way to get around Fort Lauderdale. But if public transit isnt your cup of tea and you prefer riding solo, driving your own car might be the best way to get from one place to another and a Fort Lauderdale car loan can make that easier.

Just about every bank offers some sort of auto financing, but this doesnt mean you should get a loan without asking questions. With any type of loan, you need to know exactly what youre getting into. Here are the most important questions to ask your lender when applying for an auto loan in Fort Lauderdale.

Read: 5 Ways to Save Money on a Car in Fort Lauderdale

1. What are my monthly payments?

Auto lenders can estimate your monthly payment before you choose to proceed with a loan, and its important that youre comfortable with the payment amount. The sale price of the car, the interest rate and the loan term determines your car payment.

The good news is that lenders are flexible with regard to terms, and you can pick a term that fits in perfectly with your budget. Theres even the option for longer terms -- up to 84 months -- if you need the lowest payment possible.

Using a car finance calculator, your auto lender can play around with different loan terms and help you come up with a payment amount thats affordable. For example, without a down payment, the monthly payment for a 36-month loan on a $20,000 car at 2.19 percent interest for 36 months would be about $575. But if you stretch the loan term to 60 months, your monthly payment drops to $352.

Read: Why Theres No Good Reason to Get an 8-Year Auto Loan

2. How much interest will I pay?

The total amount you pay for your car involves more than the sale price, it also involves the interest charged by the lender. Many factors play a role in your auto loan rate. For example, having a low credit score or a high debt-to-income ratio might result in a higher interest rate because theres a greater risk for default. On the other hand, you might be able to negotiate a cheaper rate if you purchase with a down payment.

Loan rates vary depending on whether you purchase a new or used car. If youre financing a car loan with a credit union, you might get approved for a rate as low as 2.19% APR for a new car purchase, while the interest rate for a used car starts at 4.69% APR.

Interest charges are added to the loan and financed over the term. Using the above example, a $20,000 new car purchase at 2.19% APR for 60 months equals about $1,230 in interest charges. After checking your credit history, an auto lender should be able to accurately quote an interest rate. If youve compared rates elsewhere and feel your lenders quote is unfair or unreasonable, ask the lender to explain the reason behind the higher rate.

3. What fees are included?

The cost of your car also includes sales tax, which is 6 percent in Florida, according to the Department of Revenue. But some auto loans include hidden fees that jack up the final price. These fees vary by lender, but might include:

  • Application fees
  • Credit report fees
  • Loan origination fees
  • Processing fees

A list of fees should be included in your financing paperwork, but dont rely on the lender to bring these fees to your attention. Its your responsibility to read the paperwork and ask questions. Even if you cant get around certain fees, you need to know what youre paying and why.

4. Can I pay off my auto loan early?

You might think this is a silly question to ask your lender, but its not. Some lenders penalize borrowers for paying off their loans too early. Interest is how lenders make money, so naturally they want borrowers to keep their loans for as long as possible.

There might be a prepayment penalty built into your loan, and if you dont read your paperwork carefully, you could get hit with a fee if you decide to pay off the loan early. Even if you dont see a prepayment penalty in your paperwork, always ask your lender about potential fees. and if theres a prepayment penalty hidden in the paperwork, see if you can get this clause removed. The bank doesnt have to comply, but its always worth asking.

If you do decide to pay off the loan early, contact your lender and ask about the process for making a principal-only payment. This ensures all extra payments are properly credited to your account, or else the bank might apply the extra payment to the interest due and not the principal balance.

Read: The Best Way to Pay Off Your Car Loan Early

5. Do you provide auto loan rate discounts?

The sale price isnt the only thing you can negotiate when buying a car, you can also negotiate the interest rate. Discounts vary by bank, but some financial institutions will discount your auto loan rate for many reasons, like having a checking, savings or another account with the bank, or if you purchase a green vehicle. Some banks will also offer discounts when you set up automatic payment for your car payment.

Some credit unions offer even more services to save members even more time and money. We Florida Financial, for example, offers a service called Auto Advisors. "[Auto Advisors] will do the work for members, helping them decide on the best vehicle and saving them money with fleet pricing from select local dealers," said Sandra Spence, vice president of advertising and PR at We Florida Financial. "Members save even more when buying through the Auto Advisors because they dont pay the high dealer fees.

Whether youre thinking about purchasing your first car or trading up to something better, a Fort Lauderdale car loan from a credit union can really help. Just dont forget the importance of asking questions and knowing all of the terms before signing the dotted line.

Renren Announces Changes to Board of Directors

Category: Auto Financing
Published: Saturday, 02 January 2016
Written by Super User

BEIJING, Dec. 31, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Renren Inc. (NYSE: RENN) (Renren or the Company), a leading real name social networking internet platform in China, today announced the resignation of Mr. Matthew Nimetz and Mr. Katsumasa Niki as directors of the Company, effective December 31, 2015. The board of directors of the Company (the Board) is in the process of evaluating candidates for a new independent director of the Company.

On behalf ofthe Board,we would like to thank Mr. Nimetz and Mr. Niki for their valuable contributions to Renren over these years, said Renrens Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Joseph Chen.

About Renren Inc.

Renren Inc. (NYSE: RENN) operates a leading real name social networking service (SNS) and an internet finance business in China. Our SNS enables users to connect and communicate with each other, share photo, play online games. Our internet finance business include primarily consumer financing and auto financing. Renren.com and renren mobile application had approximately 228 million activated users as of September 30, 2015.

For more information, please contact:

Cynthia Liu
Investor Relations
Renren Inc.
Tel: (86 10) 8448 1818 ext. 1300
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

SOURCE Renren Inc.

Nigeria to contribute 4.5% of 2016 global auto sales

Category: Auto Financing
Published: Saturday, 02 January 2016
Written by Super User

Nigeria's automobile sector may contribute at least 4.5 per cent of 2016 global automobile sales as a result of the country's increased investment in the automobile sector in 2015, which encouraged local production.

This was contained in the review report of the trends in the automobile sector in Nigeria by online vehicle marketplace, Carmudi.com.ng.

According to the report, "In 2015, investment in the automobile industry in Nigeria was at an all time high as more than 12 automobile manufacturing plants including cars, bikes, tricycles, and trucks began production in Nigeria.

With the rise of local automobile manufacturing industry, investors, auto financing and favourable government policies, 2016 promises to be an interesting year for Nigeria's automobile industry.

It is estimated that the revenue generated from this sector will produce 25 per cent of the national GDP in the first quarter of 2016."

The report also noted that "vehicle ownership increased in 2015 with the availability of locally manufactured cars, increase in the availability and sale of Nigerian used cars and access to car loans. Use of personal cars also increased."

The report's projection for 2016 trends in Nigeria noted that "E-car technology will be taken into consideration more in 2016. More people will embrace hybrid cars because of their low fuel consumption and reduced exhaust emission and production of these cars will increase by 4.6 per cent by 2020. Demand for cars with other simple technologies such as GPS, remote sensor locks, car tracking devices, keyless ignition will increase."

It added: "E car market penetration will also increase in 2015 as research paper by Carmudi Nigeria showed that 83 per cent of Nigerians start their search for cars online before purchase.

The research also stated that the online car market in Nigeria is driven by internet growth and mobile penetration. 2016 promises to surpass the 300 million searches online for new and used cars in Nigeria."

On auto brand trends, the report said: "A brand research in 2015 showed that Volkswagen may have greater potential than its closest competitors in Nigeria. Hyundai market shares will also continue to increase in 2016 followed by Toyota, General Motors and German automakers."

Recall that recently, the KPMG 2015 global Automotive Summary Survey pointed out that the automobile industry across Africa will increase in volume and global sales will pass the 100 million mark and continue to rise till the end of the decade.

Ford and General Motors Could Have a Spectacular 2016

Category: Auto Financing
Published: Saturday, 02 January 2016
Written by Super User

US sales of cars and light trucks are on pace to exceed 17.5 million in 2015, finally surpassing the industry sales record of 17.4 million set in 2000. With sales hitting a record high this year, many pundits seem to think it will be all downhill from here for US auto giants like Ford (NYSE:F) and General Motors (NYSE:GM).

However, industry conditions remain very strong, and both Ford and GM are well-positioned from a product perspective to post even higher profits in 2016 in the critical North American market.

Three things to cheer about
From an industrywide perspective, there are three key factors that should keep auto sales growing in 2016.

Auto sales could continue to strengthen in 2016. Image source: General Motors.

First, gas prices are even lower heading into 2016 than they were a year ago. The average price of regular gasoline in the US has been hovering around $2.00/gallon for the past week, down from about $2.30/gallon a year earlier. Cheap gas is putting money into drivers pockets and allowing them to afford bigger vehicles.

Second, despite steady auto sales growth in the past few years, the average age of cars on the road hit a new record of 11.5 years in 2015. Consumers have never really caught up from the sharp auto sales slowdown of the Great Recession. Theres plenty of pent-up auto replacement demand to drive strong sales for the next several years.

Third, interest rates remain extremely low. While the Fed finally raised short-term interest rates this month, it also forecast a very gradual increase in rates going forward. 10-year interest rates have risen a bit since January, but they are still lower than where they were for most of 2014. This means auto financing remains very affordable.

10 Year Treasury Rate, data by YCharts.

GM can keep the momentum going
General Motors is releasing a slew of new and refreshed vehicles that should drive another year of solid sales in 2016. The highly profitable Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups have been strong performers this year -- particularly the Silverado, which racked up more than half a million sales through the end of November. Both models were refreshed for the 2016 model year, which should keep consumer interest high.

Muscle cars are another beneficiary of low gas prices. However, GMs Chevy Camaro has lost ground this year to the Ford Mustang, which was updated for the 2015 model year. The Camaro has gotten its own redesign for 2016, which should help it catch up.

Finally, at the other end of the spectrum, GM is releasing new versions for much of its basic car lineup, including the Chevy Malibu, Chevy Cruze, and Chevy Spark. These arent high-profit models, but GM believes the redesigned Malibu and Cruze will produce $1,500-$2,000 in additional variable profit per vehicle compared to the current versions. That would boost GMs bottom line by hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

Ford poised to bounce back
While GM has been reporting record results in North America this year, Ford is likely to fall short of the peak North American operating profit of $8.8 billion it achieved in 2013.