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5 Important Things to Look for in a Credit Card Rewards Program

Date Published: September 2019

From Annual Fees to Interest Rates, Here’s Everything You Need to Know When Looking for the Right Credit Card Rewards Program.

This post is sponsored by Best Financial Credit Union

Airline miles and hotels. Cashback and gift cards. No matter which rewards you reap, credit card rewards programs are a great way to get a little bit more bang for your buck. The premise is simple: Use your credit card for everyday purchases, pay them off quickly, and earn loyalty points in return.

With so many options to choose from - Venture Capital One, Discover Cash Back, American Express, Chase Sapphire, or an airline card - picking the right rewards program can seem overwhelming. There are several important things you need to keep in mind when making your decision, and luckily, the experts at Best Financial Credit Union have come up with a few tips to help guide you along the way.

Here are five important things to look for when you’re choosing a credit card rewards program.

1. Pick the right rewards. Fist, you’ll have to decide which type of rewards you want. Do you want airline miles or cash back? Hotel points or gift cards? There are plenty of options to choose from, so you’ll just have to decide which rewards program you’ll most benefit from.

2. Watch out for annual fees. When you’re part of an exclusive club, members often pay dues. Some credit card rewards programs are no different and charge an annual fee for its services. If a rewards card has hundreds of dollars in annual fees, you’ll need to ask yourself if the rewards are really worth it.

3. Know the interest rates. Most credit cards you will research come with an interest rate, which is an additional fee that will need to be paid back to the credit card company. For example, if a card’s interest rate is 25% and the balance carried is $500, you would owe an estimated $125 in interest after a year. As you did when researching the annual fees, you’ll need to make sure that interest rates don’t outweigh the rewards.

4. Know expiration dates. With most major credit card rewards programs, as long as your account is in good standing, your rewards and points won’t expire. But, not all programs are created equal. Some programs have a ‘use it or lose it” policy, while other programs will deem inactive accounts (no activity in 12, 18, 24 months) ineligible for rewards. Make sure you’re paying attention to expiration dates.

5. Know the terms of service. A lot of the information you need to make an educated decision on which rewards program to choose can be found in the terms of service. Make sure you read them carefully and understand all of the fine print before signing up.

Bonus: Visa Rewards with Best Financial Credit Union. Are you looking for a rewards card with travel points and name-brand gift cards? A Visa Platinum Rewards Card with Best Financial Credit Union offers no annual fees or balance transfer charges, and a competitively low, fixed interest rate. Better yet, at Best Financial Credit Union you're a member, so you’ll be treated like family while our advisors focus exclusively on your financial wellbeing. And that’s not all! For more on all the benefits of banking with Best Financial Credit Union, click here.


Tips From the Experts: 5 Reasons Why You HAVE to Shop Car Insurance Every 6 Months

Date Published: August 2019

This post is sponsored by Best Financial Credit Union.

How much are you paying each month for car insurance? A new study from NerdWallet shows that in 2019, average Americans are spending $135 a month - or $1,600 a year - on car insurance.

In Michigan, rates are much higher across the board. We take the title for ‘most expensive state’ for full coverage at $4,079 a year, and for minimum coverage at $2,500 a year. Keep in mind that these rates are for drivers with clean driving records, no at-fault accidents, and good credit.

Rates can be much higher for younger drivers, those with violations, and drivers with poor credit.

While car insurance is mandatory to be on the road, it’s not necessary to pay the highest rate possible. There are several things you can do to save, and one of them is to shop around for car insurance every six months. Rates are constantly changing, and the credit experts at Best Financial Credit Union have come up with five things you need to know when looking for car insurance relief.

1. Tickets Can Come off Your Record. No driver ever wants to get a speeding ticket or a moving violation, but it happens and can haunt a driver for up to two years in Michigan, while it remains on record. Make sure you know when tickets come off your record so you can get the lowest rate as soon as you can.

2. Take a Defensive Driving Course. Some insurance companies will offer discounts or lower rates when you complete defensive driving courses. In Michigan, completing a basic driver improvement course (BDIC) can help you get a discounted rate. All you will have to do is complete the course and let your insurance company see the certificate of completion you earn when the course is complete.

3. Your Credit Score Improved. Car insurance companies often look at credit scores to help determine the likelihood of you being in an accident. According to a 2019 State of Insurance Report, moving up from “fair” to “good” credit can save the average American 17 percent a year - and then up to 70 percent if you move up more than a few tiers. Make sure you’re being responsible with credit card payments, as your good standing there can keep you in good standing with a car insurance company.

4. Bundles. Some insurance companies will offer deep discounts if you add more cars to the insurance plan, or if you bundle car insurance with other types of insurance, such as homeowners or health insurance. There are plenty of options to choose from, so picking the right policy for you and your family will require some shopping around.

5. Big Life Changes. Some insurance companies believe big life events, such as getting married or having a baby, signify a greater sense of responsibility and maturity, and offer discounts of up to 15 percent a year. All you need to do is communicate these big life changes to your insurance company, and see what new, lower, rates they can offer.

Get Help From the Experts at Best Financial Credit Union
If you’re riding on two wheels or all four, Best Financial Credit Union wants you to enjoy your ride in style. Not only can their experts help you apply for auto loans, but Best Financial Credit Union also has its own insurance agency on-site to help drivers like you get the best insurance rate possible. Best Financial Credit Union offers competitive rates, free pre-approval, local processing, and friendly, customized service from start to finish. Find out if Best Financial Credit Union is the auto loan provider for you and visit their website.


Everything You Need to Know About Boat and RV Loans This Summer

Date Published: June 2019

This post is sponsored by Best Financial Credit Union

The Fourth of July and summer high season will be here before you know it. That means vacationers all over West Michigan will soon take to the road to enjoy area recreation, including lakes, camping, and the open road.

If you’re considering buying your own boat or RV to take advantage of the upcoming summer season, now is the time to do your research and shop around. That also means learning about financing options.

Here’s what you need to know.

The Basics of Buying a Boat or RV

For most people, a boat or RV is a recreational purchase; a want rather than a need. Even if you plan to live in your vehicle, you will finance with a loan rather than a mortgage.

The process is similar to taking out a car loan, and you’ll be required to present the same types of information to the lender when you apply, including:

  • Basic contact information
  • Employment information
  • Tax returns
  • Monthly bills/list of other debt obligations
  • Specifics about the boat or RV, including year, make, model, power, options, upgrades
  • Cost of the vehicle plus sales tax and registration details

Your lender will also run a credit check, so be sure your credit score is strong to get the best possible rate for your boat or RV loan.

How Much Can You Afford?

Knowing what to spend on a boat or RV can be a complex calculation, and results will vary depending on your situation. Your price will be affected above all by whether you buy new or used. Keep in mind that a new boat or RV will initially decrease in value, just as a car would once you drive it off the lot.

However, if you maintain these recreational vehicles well, the value will often plateau or even increase, thanks to a strong market of buyers interested in used boats and RVs. Keep the future value in mind if you have a timeline for selling so you don’t end up owing more on your loan than you could reasonably recoup in a sale.

In addition to the sticker price of the vehicle, also consider the interest rate and length of the loan. Boat and RV loans tend to carry slightly higher rates than car loans but are much more affordable than credit cards or a variable rate home equity line of credit. Ask your lender to run the numbers so you can see the total cost of each loan as you compare your options. A higher down payment and shorter term will be cheaper in the long run, but you can enjoy smaller payments with terms up to 12 years if you prefer.

Finally, talk to other boat or RV owners to get a sense of their repair and maintenance costs. The same goes for insurance, as research is key. Much like your car, there’s more to the total cost of ownership than just your monthly payment. Once you have a clear picture of the amount you’ll spend, you’ll be better able to determine your budget to ensure you choose an option that’s right for you.

About Best Financial Credit Union

When you’re shopping for an RV or boat loan, choosing a local lender is a good idea. Best Financial Credit Union knows exactly what it means to hit the water in West Michigan, and they offer competitive rates on boat and RV loans, plus friendly, customized service from the moment you walk in the door. Find out more about how to get your summer started with a new boat or RV today at www.bestfinancialcu.org.


What is a HELOC and How Does it Work?

Date Published: May 2019

This post is sponsored by Best Financial Credit Union 

There are many reasons to borrow money, from renovating your home to paying for college or paying for your daughter's wedding. While credit cards carry higher interest rates and may work for smaller, more immediate purchases, there are other methods of borrowing money that go beyond credit cards and personal loans, such as a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC). 

Applying for a HELOC is similar to applying for a mortgage, but there are some vast differences in both structure and repayment. Both a home equity loan and a HELOC use your home as collateral against the borrowed money. 

Unlike a standard loan, however, a HELOC provides a level of flexibility in borrowing and spending that is comparable to a credit card. While the amount you can borrow is dependent on your home equity, your credit score, and other aspects of your personal financial situation, how you spend the borrowed money is entirely up to you. 

Banks and other lenders, such as credit unions, can offer HELOCs that are up to 80 percent of the equity of your home. The flexibility of a line of credit is exhibited in how the borrower uses the money. If you receive a line of credit for up to $100,000, you can choose, for example, to only use $30,000 of that amount. In turn, you will only have to pay back the principal and interest on the amount used, not on the entire borrowing limit. 

On the other hand, home equity loans are borrowed and dispersed in one lump sum. These loans are often for large renovation projects and have set repayment terms and interest rates. Once borrowed, you begin repayment immediately. 

The HELOC is also unique in that it enters a draw period — sometimes up to 10 years — in which you can draw on the line of credit in amounts as small or as large as you need. Most lenders even offer checks or account cards so using your line of credit is convenient and easy. During the draw period, you make payments on the interest of the amount borrowed. 

Where loans often have set interest rates, the HELOC often has a flexible rate and will adjust according to certain indicators and indexes used by the lender. The variable rate may seem risky, but on average it remains much lower than a fixed rate.

When dealing with large sums of money, a few percent savings in interest payments can go a long way. After the draw period ends, the HELOC enters a repayment period that can be a few years to a few decades in length.

The HELOC provides an advantage to other loan types and home equity loans. It offers flexibility and convenience that other loans don't provide, making it possible for you to fund your home renovations while also paying off your high-interest credit card or that unexpected medical expense. 

As with any type of borrowing or credit, comparing rates and lenders is the first step to determining which lender and which loan type are right for you. Many home equity lines of credit come with fees for opening, closing, or drawing funds from the account. Be sure to ask lenders what all of the applicable fees will be, what interest rates are available within your financial situation, and how the HELOC can most benefit you.

About Best Financial Credit Union

Unlike being just another bank customer, at Best Financial Credit Union, you're a member. We offer competitively low rates for a home purchase or refinance on primary residences, second homes, vacation homes, and investment properties. We have a wide range of financing options available, budget-friendly and accommodating repayment terms, and a team of helpful loan advisors with working knowledge of the local real estate market in West Michigan.


6 Things to Look for When Choosing the Right Mortgage Lender

Date Published: March 2019

Congratulations! You’re ready to start shopping for homes. You have been hard at work saving for a down payment, and you are finally ready to buy that perfect family home, townhouse, vacation home, or investment property. However, before you start searching for that special place in your favorite neighborhood, it’s important to find the right mortgage lender for you and your family.

How do you find the right mortgage lender?

Every lender provides different advantages, from interest rates to qualification requirements. While some factors of a home loan will be dependent on you, your credit score, your down payment, and income, there are also several other things to consider when shopping for the right loan.

Here are six of the top things to look for when choosing a mortgage lender.

1. Pre-approval. Many real estate agents expect home buyers to be pre-approved for a loan before they start showing houses. This ensures the agent is using their time wisely and that you — the home buyer — understand your housing budget. Getting pre-approved is only part of the loan process, however, which is why it is important to understand different lenders and what they can offer you. 

2. Low or competitive interest rates. This is where shopping around for loans comes in handy. Compare interest rates with other lenders in the area, making sure you get the lowest rate possible for your situation. While interest rates are impacted by things like loan amount, loan term (how long it will take to repay the loan), and credit score, not every lender is equally flexible when it comes to rates. 

  • It also helps to consider different lending institutions that can offer more competitive rates than most banks, such as a local credit union like Best Financial Credit Union

3. Flexible repayment terms. An important part of choosing a mortgage lender is understanding and feeling comfortable with the terms of repayment. Does it fit your budget? Does it stretch your wallet a bit too thin? Feeling confident that you can repay the mortgage is as important as qualifying for the loan. Ask potential lenders about their repayment options to see if they will accommodate your budget and financial goals. 

4. Closing costs. One area of home buying that is easy to overlook is the closing costs. When looking for mortgage lenders, ask about those pesky costs and how the lender can help lower or alleviate that aspect of home buying. 

5. Financing options. While shopping for that perfect mortgage, ask about the various financing options available to you. Mortgages aren’t one-size-fits-all. Every home buyer is facing different needs and circumstances. Your lender should seek to help you find the financing that fits your unique situation.

6. Local support and knowledge. There is incredible value in finding a lender who offers expertise as well as community-based financing and support. A local lender who understands you, the community, and the local housing market can offer greater flexibility and personalized help in qualifying for and understanding your mortgage loan.

Shopping for a mortgage doesn’t have to be difficult or intimidating. Understanding what to consider when choosing a lender will help you make the most informed — and best — decision for your life circumstances and financial situation.

Ultimately, finding the right lender comes down to comfort, trust, and confidence. Approach each lender with questions about the above categories, and you are one step closer to finding the perfect mortgage loan for your first, or next, home purchase. 

About Best Financial Credit Union

Unlike being just another bank customer, at Best Financial Credit Union, you're a member. We offer competitively low rates for home purchase or refinance on primary residences, second homes, vacation homes, and investment properties. We have a wide range of financing options available, budget-friendly and accommodating repayment terms, and a team of helpful loan advisors with working knowledge of the local real estate market in West Michigan. Find out if Best Financial Credit Union is the right mortgage lender for you and visit our website.


Credit Unions vs. Banks: What's the Difference and Why Does It Matter?

Date Published: February 2019

When most people think of financial institutions, it's likely that big-name banks are the first to come to mind. While these may have more brand familiarity due to their larger marketing efforts and national branch range, local credit unions are an option everyone should check out. Credit unions offer the same services and products as larger banks, but are often a better choice for the individual banker. Here are five reasons why.

1. Your Role

When it comes to banks versus credit unions, the role you play is one of the biggest differences. Traditional banks are for-profit institutions, which means they're always looking for how they can make money off of you. Credit unions, on the other hand, are actually not-for-profit institutions where members are actually shareholders. Bottom line: banks own you, but you own the credit union.

2. Interest Rates and Loan Terms

While it may seem counter-intuitive, local credit unions are actually in a better position than traditional banks to offer you competitive interest rates — this includes on interest you earn with your accounts, and interest you pay on loans. The interest rates and fees for large banks are set at the corporate level, and branch managers and personal bankers have little to no ability to adjust anything. In contrast, credit unions have a lot more control over their rates and fees, and loan decisions are usually made by the loan officer right there at the credit union, which means you may have better luck getting a loan if you have out-of-the-box circumstances, like self-employment income or bruised, damaged, and even no credit. Credit unions are here to help, let us help you get the rates and payments you deserve!

3. Services and Technology

Decades ago, it's true that banks may have been able to offer a greater range of services or have more up-to-date tech than credit unions, but this isn't the case anymore. Today, credit unions offer all the same products and services that big-name banks do — sometimes even with more benefits — and they operate with the same technology, like online banking, chip-enabled debit cards and automatic bill pay.

4. Network Size

While credit unions are local, that doesn't mean you're limited by a small network. The CO-OP Shared Branch Network means most credit unions can actually offer you a larger network than most banks. It includes 5,600 credit union branches and nearly 30,000 fee-free ATMs, as of 2019, and ensures you have access to your money whenever you need it.

5. Motivation

When it comes to your money, it's normal to be motivated by the numbers. However, who has the lowest interest rates on loans or the highest CD rates isn't all you should be looking at. Credit unions are different from banks because they are there for their members. They are operated by local people from your city who want better financial options. They are invested in helping you succeed financially and are often better able to help you decide on the financial products and services that are best for your situation.

If you're looking for a new financial institution or are unhappy with your current bank, consider your local credit union. You can have confidence that your money is where it should be and take pride in being part of a network of people helping people.

Sources:

https://www.co-opfs.org/Shared-Branches-ATMs
https://www.co-opfs.org/Solutions/Networks/Shared-Branch-Network


 4 Reasons Why Consolidating Debt is the Best Financial Solution

Date Published: January 2019

According to CNBC, the average American has nearly $38,000 in personal debt, and that doesn't include mortgages. For most people, this breaks down into a combination of credit cards, medical bills, and installment loans — like car payments. If the constant shuffle of trying to figure out what's due when is causing you stress and making you feel overwhelmed, consolidating your debt can be a great option to take control of your finances. Here's why.

It Saves You Big Money on Interest

When you consolidate debt, you can often get a lower overall interest rate than what you're currently paying. This means that you can save hundreds or even thousands in interest, even if you have to pay a fee for the consolidation. This is especially true if a large portion of your debt includes high-interest credit cards. To save the most money, take a look at your current interest rates and compare them to several different consolidation offers to ensure you're getting the best deal.

It Gets You Out of Debt Faster

While making the minimum payments on your credit cards and other debt gives you more money in your monthly budget, it also keeps you in debt longer. Paying just the minimums on your credit cards — and assuming you don't charge anything else while you're paying them off — can take some people 7-10 years to pay off. When you consolidate your debt, you usually take out one larger loan that covers all of your debt payments, but it's for a specified time period. So at the end of 3 years, 5 years, or whatever the term is, everything is paid off.

It Helps You Get in Control of Your Payments

Having to make multiple debt payments every month can be difficult. They're usually all due on different days, and it can be a challenge to keep them straight. And if you do accidentally miss one, it can mean a big jump in your interest rate and lots of fees. Debt consolidation lets you move all of your monthly debt payments into one lump sum, so there's now only one payment every month to keep track of. In some situations, you may even be able to talk to the financial institution and pick the due date for the payment, so it's at the most convenient time for you.

It's Not Just for Credit Cards

While debt consolidation can be an excellent choice for people who have a lot of credit card debt, it's still a beneficial option for those who don't use plastic cards. If you have medical bills, car payments and other miscellaneous payments for things like laptops, debt consolidation can still help you get a better handle on your debt, while feeling more in-control of your financial situation.

If this sounds like something that may be right for you, Best Financial has specific programs that make it quick and easy to consolidate debt. They can help explain what debt consolidation is and what it can do for your particular financial situation, to help you get on-track — and stay out of debt.

Sources:

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/08/20/how-much-debt-americans-have-at-every-age.html 


Why You Should Do Holiday Shopping With a Credit Card

Date Published: December 2018

Holiday shopping is so much fun. You get to imagine what your friends and family will say when they open up the perfect present. It's a joy to get into the spirit as you see your favorite shops all decorated for the season. Even just walking by the window of a big department store could put you in the mood to go shopping for gifts. When you shop for holiday presents, it's always a good idea to pay with a credit card, and here's why.

Perks and Points

Many credit cards come with perks and points for each purchase that make it worth it to use for your holiday shopping. For example, Best Financial Credit Union has an incredible Star Points Bonus Program. You can earn one point for every single dollar you spend with your Platinum card. Use the points towards gift cards, products for purchase or travel rewards, so you can turn your purchases into a nice trip down the line! Gaining credit card points through holiday purchases helps to balance out this typically expensive time of year. Presents for everyone, travel to visit family and expensive meals in or out add up, but you can get some of that value back through your credit card points.

Protection

Some credit cards cover your purchases with extra protection. If the price goes lower on a product you bought, you may be able to get a refund for the difference if you paid with your credit card. Some cards even offer you a warranty on electronics and other goods that could break over time or an extended return time that is longer than the general store policy. Some credit cards also offer insurance coverage for rental cars, so if you are traveling for the holidays, that could be a good option, as well. Check with your specific credit card policy to see what types of protections your card offers.

You Control When You Pay

When it comes to the holidays, it can be a struggle to have enough cash on hand to pay for your purchases all at once. That's where credit cards come in. With Best Financial Credit Union's Visa Credit Card, you even get a 25 day grace period. That means if you pay off your full balance within 25 days, you will not get charged any interest. You could go shopping on December 1 and have all your purchases paid off by Christmas interest-free. Even if you do let your purchases rollover, using a credit card for your holiday gift choices lets you pick when and how you pay it off. You can pay more each month to pay it off faster, or pay the minimum. The point is, paying with a credit card puts you in control of your finances.

Consider a Store Card

Store credit cards are a good option - but only if you regularly shop at a store. Many store cards act as memberships that give you a discount of up to 15% on in-store purchases. However, consider that these types of cards don't often have the same perks as your regular credit card, and they usually have higher interest, too. For most people, it's worth it to get a credit card through their bank or credit union, so they can save with lower interest rates and get some of the value of their purchases back through credit card rewards. However, if you are very loyal to one store and plan to shop there quite frequently, it may be worth it to look over the benefits of that card.

Easy to Pay Off

When you pay with a credit card for holiday purchases, it's easy to pay off. You can use an online portal to pay when it is right for you. Most people even set up automatic payments. With some financial institutions, you can set up payments to occur only within certain limits. So, for example, you can say you want to automatically pay off the whole balance unless it is over a certain amount, in which case you can specify the amount to pay. Now that you can use an online portal to pay your bill, you don't need to make a special trip to the bank to do it. You can just sign-in online via your computer or mobile device and pay when and where it is convenient for you.

Some people worry about getting into credit card debt, but when you use your cards in a smart manner, it is actually a great idea to pay for holiday and year-round purchases with one. You can build your credit which prepares you for larger purchases like a car or house, and structure your payments to stretch your money further so everyone ends up happy in the New Year!
Learn more about Best Financial Credit Union's Visa Credit Card, and then apply before the holiday shopping craze hits to take full advantage of earning points on your gift purchases. The holidays will be here before you know it!

Sources:
https://www.creditkarma.com/advice/i/credit-card-rewards-avoid-holiday-debt/
https://creditcards.usnews.com/articles/dos-and-donts-of-using-store-credit-cards-for-holiday-shopping
https://www.bestfinancialcu.org/loans-credit-cards/visa-credit-cards.html
https://creditcards.usnews.com/articles/dos-and-donts-of-using-store-credit-cards-for-holiday-shopping 


Should You Buy or Lease Your Next Car?

Date Published: November 2018

A car payment is probably one of your biggest expenditures each month, second only to your rent or mortgage payment. Determining whether to buy or lease your next car is a big decision that affects your monthly budget for many years. Knowing the pros and cons of each option helps you arrive at the smartest decision for your budget.

Pros of Leasing

Some advantages of leasing your next vehicle include:

  • Lower car payments:  The payments each month are likely to be much lower when you  lease a vehicle . This is because the car payments are only being applied to the estimated depreciation of the automobile along with any applicable finance charges, instead of to the principal and interest on the loan.
  • Drive a nicer vehicle:  Since leased vehicles are new or slightly used and the monthly payment is lower, you'll be able to afford a pricier automobile than if you purchased it.
  • Free perks:  Auto dealers want to ensure that their leased cars are well-maintained in order to maximize their resale value. Many dealers throw in free oil changes and scheduled maintenance in order to sweeten the deal when leasing cars.
  • Dependability:  Since leased vehicles are new or just slightly used, the manufacturer's warranty is still valid. This means you get to drive the vehicle during the years when breakdowns rarely occur, and if they do -- the cost is covered under the warranty.
  • Possible tax advantages:  If you're a business owner, leasing a vehicle can possibly provide some tax breaks. Discuss these tax advantages with your accountant.
  • No worries or haggling:  You don't have to fret about the resale value of your car or dread haggling with a salesman over the trade-in value. Once your lease is over, just return it to the dealership and hand over the keys.

Cons of Leasing

The disadvantages involved in leasing a vehicle include:

  • Never-ending car payments:  Many people who lease vehicles do so repeatedly. This means the payments begin again and they never have the satisfaction of owning a fully paid-off vehicle.
  • Limited mileage:  Unfortunately, lease contracts don't include unlimited mileage, therefore you have to keep an eye on the odometer so you don't go over the mileage limit. The dealer can charge additional fees per each mile you go over the limit -- as high as 10 to 50 cents per mile.
  • The automobile must remain in good condition:  If the vehicle is returned in a less than satisfactory condition; for instance, an unusual number of dings, dents or other types of damage, you'll be responsible for the repairs.
  • Early termination fees and penalties:  If for some unforeseen reason, you break the lease, you could be charged  thousands of dollars in  fees for the unused portion of your lease terms.
  • Modifications are taboo:  Unless the modification is something like professional window tinting, you must return the car as it was on the showroom floor.
  • Your credit must be quite good:  Most dealerships require a higher credit score from consumers who want to lease. Therefore, if your credit score is questionable, this may not be an option.

Pros of Buying

The advantages of buying a car include:

  • It's an investment:  After paying off the loan, you'll likely be able to recoup some of the money you invested after selling the car. This provides you with trade-in value on your next car or a hefty down payment if you sell to a private individual. It's also exciting not to have to make a car payment each month.
  • Modify as you desire:  Unlike leased vehicles, you can  modify your own car  any way you like, by adding racing stripes, cool wheels, or any other features you covet.
  • No mileage worries:  With leased vehicles, you pay high fees for each mile you go over the stated limit, but this isn't true with a purchased car.
  • Financing is easier:  Although it's important to have a good credit score so that you can get the best interest rates on your automobile loan, the dealers don't require as  high of a credit score  from buyers. Refinancing is another option available to car buyers.

Cons of Purchasing

The disadvantages of purchasing a vehicle include:

  • Depreciation:  If you purchase a new automobile, it depreciates approximately a couple of thousand dollars -- or more -- once you drive it off the lot. Each month the car depreciates even more, but over time this balances out because you owe less than the value of the car if you purchased a reputable make and model.
  • Warranties expire:  Once the warranty is no longer applicable, you are responsible for any maintenance on the vehicle.
  • Down payments are often necessary:  In order to have an affordable car payment, you may need to make a hefty down payment. Some people don't have the money to pay much on a down payment, therefore they may have to settle for a less expensive car.

How FlexSense Auto Loans Can Help

Consider applying for a  FlexSense Auto Loan  with Best Financial Credit Union in order to make purchasing a car more affordable. You will have flexible payment options compared to those available at other financial institutions. This results in the payments being similar to those of a leased car, yet you don't have any early payoff penalties. No down payment is necessary, and there are no hidden costs. Consumers can use this type of loan when purchasing a brand new vehicle or one that is 5 years old or less. You have all the advantages of a purchased car with the lower payments of a leased vehicle. Check out the benefits of this type of loan when considering your next vehicle options!

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