Getting online auto financing has become very popular in the past few years. According to a recent survey by Forrester Research, online shoppers are expected to spend $15.9 billion on autos and auto parts in 2006. The study also notes that, “22 percent of offline sales are influenced by the Web.”
Getting auto financing directly from a bank, credit union or other lending institution online is known as “direct financing.” Consumer advocates recommend direct financing because it allows you to negotiate the cost of your financing separately from the price of your vehicle. Another advantage of getting your financing first is knowing how much you have to spend before you start shopping. And, being pre-approved will keep you out of a dealer’s high pressure finance department.
You can pre-qualify for an auto loan almost instantly. Online applications take only a short time to complete and your answer is quick in coming. It is easy and convenient and can be done anytime from the comfort of your home. The online loan process is completely secure thanks to modern browser technology and electronic encryption.
The Internet is not only the place to get auto financing; it’s also a great place to find auto buying advice, shopping guides, and the safety records on any vehicle. If you are buying new, you can learn about any manufacturer’s rebates that might apply. If you are buying used, you can get a specific vehicle’s history from a site like CarFax.com. You can also purchase an Extended Service Contract or Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP) insurance, if you want the extra peace of mind.
The Federal Trade Commission offers the following advice to ensure that online financial transactions are secure and that your personal information is safeguarded:
Use a secure browser—software that encrypts or scrambles the purchase information you send—to help guard the security of your information as it is transmitted to a website. Be sure your browser has the most up-to-date encryption capabilities by using the latest version available from the manufacturer.
Keep your personal information private. Don’t disclose your personal information – your address, telephone number, Social Security number, bank account number or e-mail address – unless you know who’s collecting the information, why they’re collecting it and how they’ll use it.
Give payment information only to businesses you know and trust, and only when and where it is appropriate – like an order form. Never give your password to anyone online, even your Internet service provider.
Keep records of your online transactions and check your e-mail for contacts by merchants with whom you’re doing business. Review your monthly credit card and bank statements for any errors or unauthorized purchases promptly and thoroughly.
It’s important to choose a lender with a reputation for fair dealings and competitive rates. One such company offering free auto financing quotes online is [http://www.autoloansinseconds.com]. Even if you have bad credit, they will work to get you the best rate possible for your unique situation. Their no obligation quote is free.