If you’re in the market for a new Ford, credit is probably on your mind. Can you afford a new car? How do you get financing? And what is this dreaded APR?
Fortunately, our Ford motor credit experts make it easy to apply and receive a competitive financing offer on a used car. Getting a loan out of the way first can free you up to enjoy the car buying experience, and being locked into a set amount of credit will hold you to your budget. If you have any questions about the credit application process, give us a call! We’d love to help you make a sound financial decision.
Why Get Pre-Approved for Financing?If you’re wondering whether or not you should get pre-approved for Ford motor credit before shopping or not, the motivation is twofold: first, it will hold you within your budget, and secondly, it will allow you to enjoy the car shopping experience more.
If you haven’t solidified your financing, you might be looking at vehicles wondering, “Can I afford this? Can I come up with a large enough down payment or loan?”
With financing firmly in place, you won’t be tempted to spend outside of your budget, and you can’t allow yourself to break any decisions you made beforehand. You will also enjoy shopping, because the money aspect has already been settled to a certain extent.
The other reason to get pre-approved for credit is that depending on the results of your application, you might qualify for special offers, such as low APR and other incentives. Having these incentives firmly in place before shopping will help you decide on the kind of car you can afford.
Why does Low APR Matter?
An Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is essentially the fee you pay for borrowing money. It is reflected as a percentage. Credit cards, for instance, are notorious for their high APRs, and these 10% or higher APR fees are one of the things that can make credit cards dangerous.
Car financing APR isn’t intended to be predatory in any way, so you won’t have to deal with fees like your credit card company’s. However, lower APR means lower fees, and if you’re borrowing a significant amount of money, even a 4% APR can make a dent in your bank account.
Your eligibility for low APR is often determined by your credit score--higher credit scores mean you can secure better financing at a better rate. A low credit score will hurt your ability to borrow money.
Why Does my Credit Score Matter?Lending companies and car dealerships don’t know you, and they don’t know your financial situation well enough to make an informed decision on whether or not to loan you money. That being said, “credit score” has become a universally accepted way to measure an individual’s trustworthiness when it comes to borrowing money. Whether you feel like your score is accurate or not, lenders look at individuals with higher scores as being more trustworthy than borrowers with low scores.
As such, you will receive low APR and better financing options when you credit score is higher.
What Affects my Credit Score?Maintaining your credit score is a necessary evil in today’s fiscal landscape, but credit score factors often seem nebulous. Here are the two most common factors affecting almost everyone:
Your ratio of available credit to what you owe
Any outstanding payments.
The second factor is self-explanatory; if you have any outstanding payments, they will negatively influence your credit score.
The first factor is a bit more complicated, but it essentially means that you should try and always keep a large percentage of your credit limit free. In other words, if you have a $5,000 credit limit, you should never carry a balance of more than $1500 before paying it off--experts agree that the 30% threshold is the best way to maintain healthy credit.
Don’t Hesitate to Reach Out - We’re Here to HelpIf you’re struggling with your Ford finance application, please feel free to get in touch. Our finance professionals would be happy to help, and they know how stressful it can be to line up financing for a new vehicle. From our shop-by-price tool to our selection of affordable and reliable Fords, you can always find a car in your budget with us.