A number of automakers offer 0% financing on new cars, trucks, and SUVs. While zero interest financing can save you thousands on the ultimate cost of your new car or truck, there are some factors you should take into consideration: your credit, your monthly payments, and new car rebates.
Qualifying for Zero Interest Car Loans
First off, you should know that zero % financing deals are only open to well-qualified buyers, those getting car loans with good credit. Although car dealers are loathe to disclose the minimum credit score you need to qualify, most industry experts cite anywhere from 650-750 as the cutoff point. To find out what your credit score is, visit our trusted partner, CreditReport.com.
Affording the Payments
Some automakers constrict their 0% auto financing offers to shorter loan terms, like 36 or 48 months. These shorter length terms can make your monthly payments quite high, so you just need to work with your finance specialist to ensure that the payments don’t cut too deeply into your monthly budget. That said, as of 2010, many car manufacturers trying to move vehicles off the lot have been offering 0% financing for 60 months, like Toyota.
Cash-Back Rebates – Better?
Here is one valuable point of advice: negotiate the price of your vehicle before you get to financing. With some zero-interest car deals, you have to forfeit the new car rebate. In the vast majority of cases, the 0% financing deal will be cheaper in the end — that said, you just want to double-check that the rebate you’re missing wouldn’t have made the vehicle less expensive in the end. Again, this is rare but worth mentioning.