Worried About Committing to – or Making – Car Payments in the Age of Coronavirus?

?:Connie Peters

There’s help for that.

With the coronavirus global pandemic continuing to spread, and the disruption that has ensued, from social distancing to business grinding to a halt, a lot about our day-to-day activities has changed. Some of those dominoes are car sales and on-time payments.

So, many auto companies have put together plans that will hopefully make things a bit easier. From allowing consumers to delay payments to covering some missed car payments, many are taking a proactive approach. And, to entice help consumers reduce the risk of buying a new car, others are offering things like 0% interest and a delayed payment schedule.

All this may just help you bring home the new family car, truck, van, or SUV.

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Car Payments Ford Credit Covid-19Deferring Payments Could Help Many Get Into A Car Their Family Needs Today

Despite the disruption of the auto business–many auto plants are idled for the time being– automakers are finding ways to still get people into new cars. Most notably are the 0% loans and delayed payments, letting buyers wait 90 days (or in come cases longer) to make that first payment.

And if you’re someone who has been financially unable to purchase or lease a car because of the payments or interest on a car loan, this could be a great opportunity. Of course with any car loan, buyers must be approved, which is on a case-by-case basis.

If this is for you, check to see that the dealers in your area are still open and get your finances in order!

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Car Payments During The Coronavirus Pandemic

If you’ve been eyeing that truck, take a look at the current incentives to weigh your options on possibly getting into your next family truck. ?: Ram Trucks

Weigh Your Options to Decide Which Offer Could Be Right For You

Ford, Nissan, Toyota, General Motors, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Genesis and Hyundai have different ways for you to save and defer payments. And yes, you can purchase a new vehicle for 0% interest and deferred payments; that’s a pleasant surprise in this very unpleasant time!

Ford announced it would defer first car payments by 90 days for purchases or leases. Even Nissan is allowing customers to delay their payments by 90 days on their 60 and 72-month purchases. Want that new shiny truck with all the bells and whistles? Pull up in tailgate luxury for no payments for 90 days and 0% interest for 84 months. General Motors is offering the same 0% on an 84-month loan, but it offers 120-day deferred payments on new vehicles. However, you have to be in the top credit tiers. 

Genesis and Hyundai give shoppers the opportunity for financial support, especially in uncertain times. They’re offering 90-day payment deferments and their Assurance job-loss protection program again. If you lose your job, they’ll cover 6 months of payments.

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Car Payments During Coronavirus

Automotive brands are looking to help you afford a new car, truck, or SUV without worry. ? Nissan

The Internet Ages Truly Comes to Car Buying

Once you’ve researched the deal you want, call the local dealer to see if they will deliver the car and paperwork to you. Many will, including Chevrolet, Hyundai and Genesis, which has been on the forefront of home delivery of new cars for a few years now.

And many local dealers (and their service departments!) are still maintaining retail hours for test drives and in-person shopping with a salesperson. So you can shop however you’re comfortable with as little human interaction as you’d like.

How Long Will These Deals Last?

Auto makers typically offer deals like this at certain times of the year (like right before New Year’s) and during times of national crisis, such as after a hurricane. This crisis is a bit different; the offers may continue for a while, auto makers may sweeten their offers, or they may decide they’ve sold enough cars and end the incentives. It’s anyone’s guess.

The Caveats. Yes, There Are Always Caveats

Be sure to read the fine print. You may need to meet certain credit requirements, need to purchase by a certain date or make a minimum downpayment to qualify. Be sure you understand what criteria you may need to meet in order to qualify for deferred or covered payments for a given offer.

Make sure the terms are a fit for you. 60 and 72 month payment terms mean you’ll be paying for that car for 6 or 7 years; is that sustainable and financially sound for you?

Be prepared with your own financing. If your credit keeps you from that ideal 0% down deal but the price is right, you may still come out with a great deal.

And, know the value of your trade in; often when deals are great like this, dealers are less generous with trade in values (though sometimes they are very generous, so be sure to know your trade in value).

A bargain on a new car isn’t a good deal if it’s not what you want, need or doesn’t fit your budget.

And if you are having, or afraid you might have, trouble making your car payment, call your creditor. They don’t want you to default as much as you don’t want to default and they should be able to help you find a solution.

And don’t forget: wash your hands and stay healthy.

I'm Natalie "Kitty" Merola. I'm a cool mom who loves fabulous style + beauty accessories, fast cars, video games,... More about Natalie Merola