Row of new cars in port.

What Does APR Mean When Buying a Car?

Looking to finance a new car? Here are some things to consider when it comes to interest for auto loans.

Typically, APR on an auto loan works similarly to APR on an unsecured loan, where simple interest accrues daily based on the outstanding principal balance; as you pay down your principal balance, the amount of interest accrued each day decreases. Just remember that everything is negotiable when it comes to buying a car, including the APR.

When you are going over the financing options with the dealership, they may try to add 2-3% onto your APR beyond what’s necessary, and that extra amount will go directly to them, so you should always do research beforehand and be prepared to show them competitive rates from your local bank or credit union to prevent them from jacking up your APR. Be ready to back up your promise to get a loan from the bank instead of the dealership if they don’t make a fair offer.

Find out what 0% APR means in the context of buying a car here.

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