Answering your money questions: When Should I Refinance My Car?

People in a broadcast

The season of giving is upon us and America First has recently launched its 13th Annual Community Food Drive. As a credit union, their philosophy is “people helping people†and it’s important to them that they serve others – not just during the holidays, but throughout the year.

Through Saturday, Oct. 21, all branch locations throughout Utah will accept donations of non-perishable food items to distribute to local food pantries and food banks. Since its inception in 2004, the annual community food drive has collected more than 150,000 pounds of food.

According to the Utah Food Bank, one in six Utahans and one in five Utah children live in poverty and are unsure of when they’ll have their next meal, and about 423,000 Utahns risk missing a meal each day.

America First Credit Union is always working with local organizations and businesses to find creative ways to save their members money on fun, family-friendly things to do in the community.

For the month of October, members who use an America First Credit Union debit or credit card will receive $5 off a single day admission to the Loveland Living Planet Aquarium.

Today’s Viewer Question:

If you have a car loan, should you refinance after a certain amount of time with the goal of getting a better interest rate? If so, does it cost? And at what point in the loan should you refinance?

There are several situations in which it may be beneficial to refinance your car loan. One is if you’re trying to take advantage of lower interest rates. For example, if you purchased your car several years ago back when rates were higher, you may want to consider refinancing in order to get a better rate. Doing so will lower your payment, but most importantly, it will decrease the amount of interest you have to pay on the loan.

It’s also a good idea to consider if your credit situation has improved substantially compared to when you bought the car. If you’ve improved your credit enough, your interest rate is likely to go down, and that means you’ll make a lower monthly payment and you’ll pay out less money in interest.

Another reason you might want to refinance is to get a shorter loan term. This especially applies to drivers who have had major changes in their financial situation. For instance, if you’ve earned a promotion at work or you got a new job that pays better than before, you may want to consider refinancing your long-term car loan to a shorter term. Your payments will be higher, but you’ll pay the car off sooner, and you’ll pay less money over time in interest.