Zero-percent Car Financing – Fact Or Fiction?

What does zero percent financing really cost? Car dealers have been very successful with their zero percent financing campaigns – so successful that the concept has been repeated in other industries such as electronics, furniture sales and credit card companies.

According to CNW Research, only one-third of buyers who apply for zero percent auto financing actually qualify and only 10% of those deals actually close according to the National Automobile Dealers Association. CNW Research goes on to state that many zero percent qualifiers overpay for their cars, since they assume they’re getting the best deal available and they fail to negotiate price. Automotive manufacturers use their own financing companies to underwrite these zero percent loans, each of which have their own credit qualifications. Generally speaking an applicant must have close to perfect credit to qualify for zero percent financing.

If you have been one of the fortunate ones that didn’t get lured in with the 0% financing offers only to get switched to a higher rate because of “blemishes” on your credit and the dealer is now offering you that “free” money, here are some drawbacks you should be aware of before signing that deal.

Shorter Loan Terms. Some dealers offer 60 month terms, but 36 months is average. This means your monthly payments will be much higher.

Limited Inventory. The zero percent offers are generally reserved for models that are suffering lower sales and is almost never offered on pre-owned inventory.

Cash Back. Have you every noticed the “or” clause in those zero percent advertising ads “0% or $10,000 cash back?” That $10,000 you lose by opting for the zero percent financing is the actual cost of borrowing. This often equates to an interest rate much higher than a traditional car loan.

Adding up the Numbers A recent search of the website of one of the Big 3 automakers shows an offer of zero-percent financing on a 2005 mid size sedan. This is how the numbers work out.


zero percent car finance

Zero percent car finance

0 Percent Car Financing 0% car financing is when you can purchase a car and make monthly payments on it without having to pay any interest. As you can imagine, it is a tempting offer that seems too good to be true. Unfortunately, it usually is. There are many pitfalls to 0% financing that you should be made aware. Let's take a look at a few of them.

0% car financing, what is it? This is where you'll see the dealership offer 0% financing or up to a $10,000 cash back offer. When you crunch the numbers, it turns out that the cash back offer normally saves you money. As of today, Ford.ca offers a 0% financing deal or $7,000 in price adjustments.

0% Financing for Used Cars Because you are not paying interest, the dealerships will give you a shorter repayment period of somewhere between 36 and 48 months. This means that you'll have much higher monthly payments than you otherwise would with a 60 month loan. If you bought a pre-owned vehicle with a 6.95% loan, you would actually end up paying less for your vehicle than with 0% financing plan.

Auto Financing London Ontario The most important thing to remember is that, in the end, it comes down to what you can afford to pay per month. Most people will not be able to afford a 0% financing deal and so must opt for a loan. This isn't a bad thing and shouldn't be discouraged. Regardless, 0% financing is a fading trend and may not be around in five more years.