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Minimum and maximum loan periods vary between 6 months and 10 years. Comparison
interest rates vary between 6.55% and 19.07% p.a. Total interest repayments vary between
$4,290 and $14,531 over the life of the loan. *Comparison rate is based on an unsecured loan
of $30,000 for a term of 5 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the
examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan
amounts might result in a different comparison rate. These rates can change without further
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Low interest car loans – Find competitive rates in Australia
When you’re financing a new set of wheels, it’s easy to focus narrowly on the low-interest deals waved at you. However, with the right strategy, i.e. comparing options at every point, your savings can make real gains. Find out what you can do to drive a hard bargain in this guide about low-interest car loans in Australia.
What’s a low interest rate for car loans?
When searching for different finance products, getting a low rate is usually top of the list for Aussie borrowers. But, what sort of creature is a low interest rate, really? Does it lie between 1 and 5%, or is it stationed squarely at 0%?
The best answer to this is, only markets can tell.
That’s why comparing different offers is always a worthwhile move. Once you dive into the process, you’ll find it easier to separate artificial products from options that can serve your pockets well.
Lastly, as you shine a spotlight on every product of interest, try and keep in mind that finding the lowest rate isn’t the be-all and end-all when it comes to getting the best car finance deal. Instead, you may first need to understand how vehicle loans work before launching a more comprehensive approach.
How do low interest car loans work in Australia?
Keeping a sharp eye for low rates ensures you pay less with each repayment and in the long run. However, there are many moving parts to a car loan besides the interest rate or advertised rate. These also influence the total bill you would have paid by the time your term ends. Here’s what you also need to know when searching for the best low interest car loans:
Advertised rate vs comparison rate
Some lenders like to make their interest rates attractive. But, once you cross the line between a particular loan’s advertised rate and it’s comparison rate, the offer might lose its appeal. That’s because the comparison rate showcases the ‘real’ cost of your loan. Besides the interest rate, it also collects other loan fees and charges and presents them in one percentage.
These charges include establishment fees and ongoing fees that cover monthly account keeping services. The bottom line is, interest isn’t everything, and in some cases, there may be even more non-standard charges lying in wait outside the comparison rate. Additionally, the comparison rate is calculated using a preset formula. If your loan is different, this rate might not always give you the full picture when it comes to cost.
Variable rate vs fixed rated
A low interest rate can also have a fixed or variable state. If you nominate a fixed rate, expect the rate to hold its course once established by the lender.
That means your repayments will have the same bill over the life of your loan. Asides from reducing budget work, you won’t be affected by sudden changes to the Reserve Bank cash rate. However, that also means no savings in store if the rate drops.
A variable rate, on the other hand, never truly levels off, but goes up and down. If you correctly predict a fall, you can easily pocket thousands of dollars in savings. At the same time, if the rate starts creeping upwards, you’ll need to adjust your budget to accommodate the extra demand.
Secured vs unsecured
Getting a competitive interest rate also depends on whether your debt is secured or not. Secured car loans are the front-runners when it comes to low interest car loans. The finance arrangement typically involves giving the lender a pass to repossess and sell your vehicle if you fail to repay.
By using the vehicle as a guarantee, the lender faces a lower risk from financial loss. They’ll, therefore, reward you with a lower rate.
Unsecured car loans are an alternative option for those with assets that don’t qualify for use as security. In some cases, a borrower may choose not to offer their vehicle as collateral for other reasons. Since this arrangement leaves the lender open to financial loss, they’ll charge a higher rate for the risk involved.
How to reduce costs and save money when financing your car
A low interest car loan is great if you want to own a car outright without having to pay the lender too much on top. While comparing low rate offers works, using the following tips also gives you a better deal on both ends:
- Make additional repayments. Paying car loan repayments at a faster rate means you get to own your ride sooner. It also means you won’t have to cover borrowing costs which can add up the longer it takes.
- Put up a deposit. A deposit not only ensures you borrow less, it also means less risk to the lender. Using more of your savings for this purpose will likely get you favourable rates and fees.
- Check your credit report. If your credit score needs a quick boost, fixing errors in your credit report is one way to do it. Credit providers generally bring out lower rates and fees for borrowers with a clean credit history since they represent a lower risk.
- Try and get a pre-approval. Visiting a car dealership with an already secured finance deal means you get more negotiating power. Getting a pre-approval can be worth it if it allows you to dust off a few thousands of dollars from the vehicle’s price
- Opt for a co-signer or co-borrower. If you can get a reliable family member or friend to sign up with, you might get a better deal. This is particularly so if they have a more stable income and a higher credit score.
- Use the car loan repayment calculator. Enter your loan amount and term and get an estimate for your monthly repayments. Also, check with the lender to find out the total cost of your repayments even when the interest rate looks good.
How to find low-interest car loans with flexible features
When you fixate on finding the best low-interest car loans, it’s easy to miss out on other flexible loan features. Taking a step back helps to keep your budget, needs, and circumstances in the picture during the process. Consider how the following factors can make the repayment process easier and more comfortable for you:
- Additional repayments. Some low interest car loans allow you to fit in extra repayments in between due dates. This, in turn, enables you to exit the loan early without having paid too much in interest. However, you also need to check that the additional repayments don’t bring extra charges into the mix. In that case, you’ll need a cost-benefit analysis to confirm if it all adds up to more savings.
- Flexible repayment plans. Some finance providers also allow you to pick repayment schedules and payment methods. That means you can tailor the finance product to your cash flow and circumstances. Options include weekly, fortnightly, or monthly repayments paid via debit order, BPAY or other means.
- Other unique benefits. Some low interest rate car loans have specialised features for car buyers. For instance, you can get an offer that rolls extended warranties, insurance, and discounts into one product. Another feature to look out for is a ‘redraw facility’ that gives you a ‘line of credit’ for any extra funds you have paid towards your debt. But, you’ll also have to watch out for redraw fees if you opt for this feature.
Compare and apply for car loans with competitive rates
When you browse BestFind’s comparison website, you’ll discover multiple options to help yourself from. Here’s a quick step-by-step guide to getting you started and behind the wheel in no time:
- Compare car loans. Use our comparison table above to shop for low rate car finance available from a variety of credit providers.
- Use other tools provided. Apply the filter and use the repayment calculator to narrow down your options quickly.
- Apply for car finance. Once you’ve worked out your best bet, click ‘Go to Site’ and hop onto the lender’s website to kick-start your application.
Low interest car loans in Australia FAQ
How much can I borrow?
Like personal loans, you can usually borrow a lump sum between $2,000 to $100,000. However, your borrowing capacity is unique and based on the lender’s limits and your ability to repay the debt.
What are the loan terms?
In Australia, these are usually between 1 and 10 years.
What’s the best way to identify a low and competitive rate?
Comparing different rates and looking at market trends is the best way to catch realistic low-rate offers when you finally come across them.
Can I still get a low rate when buying a used vehicle?
Usually, used vehicles are more prone to breakdowns and defaults. That means you can’t always use the car for security unless it’s a classic. With unsecured loans, the lender faces greater risk and will likely increase rates and fees.
Can I apply if I have bad credit?
Yes, however, you’ll have to carry out thorough research and several loan comparisons. This helps you avoid extremely high rates and disreputable lenders looking for a quick profit.
How do I check a car’s financial history?
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