My wife and I knew what we were getting into when we booked the wedding venue of our dreams: it was over budget. A modern mansion that was within easy driving distance for our friends and family? It was too perfect to pass up. We thought we'd make up the deficit by cutting back on the little things, like floral arrangements, but unless we scrapped the honeymoon completely, we were in the red.
Not to mention we put a down payment on a house. (Yes, yes, we know.) So here we were, still figuring out how to change Amy's last name, and already broke newlyweds. Something had to give.
We thought about giving up one of our cars, but public transportation near us sucks, so that wasn't an option. We wondered if maybe we could decrease our monthly car payments, since they were both over a year old. We had no idea what the first steps were, so we called up our lenders, but kept hitting brick walls (and answering machines).
When looking up "how to refinance your car loan," we came across RateGenius.
They claimed that through using their service, they get users an average reduction of $76 a month. If it was that easy, that would be hundreds of dollars a year. We filled out a basic pre-qualification questionnaire about us (our name, address, how long we had our car for), and we were assured that because this questionnaire was only a pre-qualification, our credit scores would have zero impact, which was welcomed news.
Once we were prequalified, we were browsing different potential rates that were already far better than what we were already paying, so in just a few minutes (Amy only took longer because she had to go outside and look at the mileage) we were done with our full application. It didn't take longer than a day before we received notice that we were both approved!
From there, we each were assigned a representative (Sam and Jessie) that would be with us throughout the entire process. During the whole time, the two of them were very friendly as they walked us through the next steps: RateGenius negotiate with lenders to lower your rates, and search for the most competitive interest rates. We were slightly nervous in case the reps would be unfriendly or unhelpful (let's face it, customer service reps aren't always the best over the phone), but even after Amy's million questions, Jessie patiently and kindly explained everything in detail: she said these questions were welcomed as they want to ensure we have the best experience while signing up. Jessie went as far to clarify with us that we wouldn't be paying them a cent unless they could secure us more money, in the form of a shorter loan or lower monthly payments, or both.
Update: Fill out the prequalification form within a minutewith zero impact on your credit score to see if you qualify for lower rates!