0% Auto Financing

0% auto financing means an auto dealership will give a car-buyer an auto loan without interest. While there is usually a down payment involved, the buyer will not have to pay interest on the amount borrowed. That’s right: 0% auto financing will provide a loan free of interest payments. This could seem like a great deal. But buyers need to know when zero percent financing works for their benefit and when it works against it.

Why zero percent auto financing is difficult to get: credit scores and loans.

Zero percent car financing is difficult to acquire because it’s usually offered to such a thin slice of qualified buyers. In order to qualify for any car loan, even one with zero percent, a borrower needs to have a good credit score. Only buyers with nearly spotless credit ratings can qualify. And even those buyers with some very slight tarnish on their credit scores could be refused.

Select vehicles and options often erase the 0% financing option.

Zero percent loans are only often offered as a financing option for the dealer’s choice of vehicle. Slower-moving vehicles are often tagged with the 0% financing incentive to move cars off the lot. This works fine for people looking for vehicles that aren’t selling well. But for buyers looking to buy a more popular vehicle, or for those searching for specific vehicle options, zero percent financing may not apply. While a dealer may be happy to provide someone looking for a car with, say, leather seats instead of cloth seats, the loan that previously didn’t have any interest may suddenly find itself coming with interest charges.

0% loans often discredits manufacturer’s rebates.

Auto dealers will often offer a 0% percent option to attract potential buyers to a dealership. When a buyer looks to capitalize on a manufacturer’s rebate as well as the 0% financing, the dealer tells her it’s one or the other. But this can sometimes work to the benefit of some borrowers. If your credit score doesn’t qualify you for the 0% auto financing, you can search out the manufacturer’s rebate and still save yourself money.

Zero percent auto financing can sometimes be more expensive than interest-charging loans.

Depending on the interest rate and a borrower’s qualifications, an interest-bearing loan can sometimes be more affordable on a month to month basis than options offering zero percent financing. Often, a dealership will offer a zero percent auto loan for a much shorter term than a typical, interest bearing loan. This quickened repayment schedule will cost the borrower more each month than a traditional, longer interest bearing loan. Let’s use an example. Say the loan amount for a new car is $20,000. Through a typical interest bearing account, and ignoring any down payment, a buyer would stand to pay off the loan in about 72 months. At 6.75% on the loan, the buyer would pay about $296.53 each month. With a zero percent auto financing option, that same buyer would need to make her payments in a far shorter period of time. Let’s say bout 36 months, which is typical for zero percent auto financing. Those $20,000 would cost our zero percent buyer $555.56 each and every month.

The Best Free Android Finance Apps

Obviously many people will be skeptical as to how good free apps actually are, with many consumers actually purposefully not downloading free apps due to fears that they will crash or being infected with various ways of stealing your money. However these fears are totally unfounded and without evidence so do not let this put you off. Now to the apps:

PayPal

If you have been on the internet at some point then you will have undoubtedly heard of PayPal. The service facilitates payments between people via a simple email address, avoiding the complexities usually associated with bank transfers and the like. The PayPal Android app allows users to manage their PayPal account just as they would through the official website. The app is totally secure and allows you to make purchases or deposits also amongst other activities on the move, a very useful addition to the marketplace.

Quote Pro

Quote Pro is also an incredibly useful app, used by many on a daily basis it has fast become one of the most downloaded in its range. Not only can you obtain extremely detailed and accurate information about the range of stocks you have an interest in, but you can also keep an eye on your portfolio of stocks and shares.

Tip Calculator by TradeFields

Tip Calculator is perhaps one of the most imaginative apps I have personally seen on the app marketplace. It is incredibly useful for an aspect you will have probably have struggled with every time you’ve been out for a meal, the tip. Not only will the app inform you of the total tip you should be leaving behind, but will also divide the total tip amount between the number of people at the dinner, saving much embarrassment, delays and napkin calculations!

Currency Converter

How many times have you been in a foreign country or at the airport and have been wondering how much you will actually get in return for your dollars? Numerous times in all probability. The currency converter provided by Pocketools will enable you to be provided with an accurate, up to date and independent currency exchange valuation allowing you to shop around to find the best exchange rate. Not only does this app provide you with the current exchange rate, it will also give you data on the currency of your choice over the last 5 year period through the use of many easy to read graphs.

Mileage

This is without doubt one of the best apps I have personally seen. With the rising prices of gas which look set to continue for the foreseeable future it is a great way of ensuring that you are driving as economically as possible and therefore saving as much gas as possible. I haven’t an idea about how it works but it does, the interface is also extremely slick, simple to navigate through and to understand.

Finance

Finance, whilst the name of the app may not excite you or conjure up ideas that this app is going to change the world it certainly fills a gap in the market which needed a simple app. It’s similar to Google search in many aspects, it provides a very basic user interface, but one that is incredibly effective and performs its job excellently. If you already use Google Finance or are considering starting to use it then this app is vital, it synchronizes everything meaning it’s like being on your main PC.

Financisto

Financisto is another great money manager. The ability to create long and short term budgets for holidays, short breaks or just a simple shopping trip is a real plus point for this app and one which has seen it rocket in terms of popularity. In addition to this the app has the capability to check your recurring payments amongst many other essential financial activities; this has left many users of the marketplace wondering why there is no charge.

The Best Finance App

The best finance app, in my opinion, is Mint.com’s mobile app. Here is a list of its features and finance app alternatives if you prefer to use an app other than Mint.com.

Mint.com (Free)

I have been using mint for a long time now and believe it is the best finance app. Intuit bought this web site a while back so it is very secure, using bank level encryption.

Mint gives you a quick overview of your finances, which you can put on one of your main screens in the form of a widget. The widget will show your current cash amount and your credit debt. It will also show you the last time your information was updated, so you can be sure that you are looking at the most recent information.

Once you set up a monthly budget, you can access it with the app to make sure you are staying on track for the month. Mint is very good at knowing how to categorize your transactions for budgeting purposes and it will let you know if it does not know how to categorize a transaction.

The app automatically gives you alerts for various things, which include the availability of large deposits, what bills will are due in the next few days, etc.

You can get a very general picture of you investments with this app. By that, I mean if you simply want to know the balance of you accounts, you will be happy with this app. If you want to get more information about the performance of specific investments, you will need to go to the website.

To set up this app, I would suggest you log on to the main website to input all of you account information and set your budget. Once that is completed, you simply download the app, log in, and all your accounts are ready to go.

Adaptu Wallet (Currently Free)

Adaptu Wallet has many unique features like tracking loyal programs and creating spending forecasts. The app also allows you to store photos of insurance and business cards, which will decrease the clutter inside your wallet. The app is currently free, but the word on the street is they will start charging for usage sometime in 2012.

Pageonce (Free or $4.99 for Gold version)

Pageonce arguably has the best interface of all the finance apps. Your key account balances are placed in thumbnails that appear on the home screen. Contrary to popular belief, this app does provide PayPal support even though many claim it doesn’t. Balance updates are not as fast as Mint.com or Adaptu, some transactions take days to update. The Gold version has the useful ability to pay bills directly from the app, and this is the only finance app that can do this. The gold version also removes all the ads from your app.

The ABCs of Auto Finance

Car loans were created for the same purpose as with any expensive items–to help average people, or those without large sums of money, to be able to purchase these items. The consumer could put up a small amount of capital, and establish ownership of the item, and then a lender would hold a secured note for the remaining balance, under certain terms. The most important parts of the terms include loan amount,interest rate, payment, and duration or ammortization of loan. So, I’m getting a $10,000 loan, at 9% interest, with a monthly payment of $207.58, and the loan is for 5 years. Make sense? Good, we’ll come back to this. Understanding terms is extremely important- how can you know your getting a good deal without understanding the terms?

If your feeling overwhelmed, don’t worry, we are here to clear up your confusion and arm you with everything you need to make wise decisions. Just relax and read on…

Here’s some History…

Cars became more and more expensive over the last several decades, so, naturally, more and more people needed to use financing to enable there vehicle purchases. This worked out for the banks and other financial institutions because they could make a lot of money producing and holding these notes.

Decades ago, the process was fairly simple. You’d shop around with banks for the best interest rate, borrow the money from them, go to the dealership, and pick out your new car. At some point large car manufacturers realized how much money the lenders or banks were making, and decided to try and cash in themselves. So what did they do?

The big names in car manufacturing decided to create a lending system so they could provide their own loans. In this way, their dealerships could offer their own in-house financing to car buyers. They would make the money from the purchase, as well as the interest on the loans, and sell more cars because of the convenience of offering financing. This system is still very common today.

In recent years, due to the widespread use of the internet, consumers are more commonly going on-line for their auto financing needs, using consumer sites like AutoFinanceReview.com [http://www.autofinancereview.com]. This puts the consumer in control, and people are increasingly favoring this route. More on this later…

So, let’s talk a bit more about dealerships…

Your at the dealership and have picked out a car. Let’s use Car Max auto finance as an example. Car max will want to first figure out how much you can afford to pay monthly. You will then be asked to fill out an application. This application includes all of your info, including income, credit history, residence, and employment history.

Most dealerships will then review your application information, and match you with one of their lenders for financing. They generally have a database of lenders to choose from. Some of the lenders only service loans for buyers with great credit. Some specialize in servicing loans for buyers with bad credit. The idea is, most credit profiles can be matched with a lender, unless your credit is really terrible! Your credit score however will directly effect the terms of your loan. Most importantly, it will effect the auto loan interest rate. Generally, credit scores and interest rates are inversely proportional. What? This just means that the higher the credit score, the lower the rate. The lower the credit score, the higher the rate. Basically, lenders are all about balancing risk. If you have poor credit, they will want to balance that risk with a higher interest rate. Understand? Good.

Regardless of which lender ends up servicing your loan, the dealer still gets paid for their car, by the lender. Additionally, the dealership is able to tack on a few “points”. “Points” refers to percentage points, and these are often added to the deal by the middle-man. The dealer is the middle man between you and the lender, and the dealer is basically charging you for the service. The percentage points are calculated as a one-time amount and added to the sales price. So you can see this as a system is all-around profitable for the dealers. We mentioned this before, but this is why it is smart to go on-line and more and more consumers are doing just that for their financing needs.

Top 10 iPhone Apps for Personal Finance

There are many applications for the iPhone that give users the ability to make personal financing easier than ever. While solving one pain-in-the-neck issue, it creates another – which app to buy? Because of the popularity of these headache-reducing apps, there is an overwhelming amount of options available in the App Store. Deciphering which app is the best available is almost impossible. Add in the fact that so many aren’t free, and choosing the right one the first time around could save time and money. Before downloading anything, it’s important to know if the functionality of the app (money transferring, budget tracking, etc.) fits your needs. Provided is a list of ten apps including the price and primary function that can make tracking personal finances much easier.

Mint – There are tons of finance apps available that focus on budget tracking. Few are as popular as Mint, which allows users to manage multiple financial accounts from one simple user interface. With user-friendly features and no price tag, there is little wonder why this app has so many users.

Loan Shark – Dealing with loans is never a pleasant experience. The Loan Shark app helps ease some of the pain endured while handling loans without having to pay anything. It simplifies the process of calculating loans by a great deal and also has many features including a full amortization table, a one-tap extra payment option, and a “favorites” feature.

MoneyStrands – This app is another free option for tracking your budget. With features like alerts, analysis, security, and support, it is one to compare to Mint.

PageOnce – Planning long-term investments can be easy to put off. This app also assists in budgeting your current finances like MoneyStrands and Mint, but really excels in planning for the future. It gives you the ability to look at your 401k, IRA, and stocks all at the same time, while not costing you a cent.

Toshl – Toshl incorporates cloud computing into every day financing with this free app. The cloud feature allows users to automatically sync their mobile movements online. Additionally, there is a premium upgrade ($19.95/year) that allows users to export to Excel, PDF, or Google Docs among other features.

MoneyBook – MoneyBook is another addition to the long line of apps for budgeting. This one, however, comes at a price. Promoted as “Finance with Flair,” the app costs $2.99 and is loaded with features to make financing easier.

SplashMoney – At $4.99, what differentiates this from the free apps is its ability to connect wirelessly to most online bank accounts.

Square – The price is right for this free app that makes credit card purchases simpler than ever. By signing up, Square, Inc. will provide a credit card reader that can be attached directly to the iPhone. Once connected, users have the ability to swipe all major credit cards with only a 2.75% charge per swipe.

PayPal – Ebay-owned PayPal provides users a secure, simple way to send or receive money wirelessly.

General Banking – The bulk of major banks have available apps for free. These provide easy-access to any and all bank accounts in a secure fashion.

This is only a small example of the many, many apps that can help make financing easier. With the continuous release of new applications and updates to old ones, banking from your iPhone will continue to simplify; finding the app for doing so may not. This list is a great place to start looking.

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