If you are like me, you will do anything in your power to avoid the dreaded trip to a car dealership in search of that perfect car. It all starts the minute you walk through their doors: a school of hungry sharks, better known as the salespeople, immediately greet you. They are aggressive, pushy, and often overbearing —— their goal being to make sale.
In addition to the interaction with the sales person, there is the financing. This is the step in the process where the sales person takes all the information you have provided and begins negotiating on your behalf with the finance manager.
Even for those with perfect credit, or those who have the financing set up before arriving at the dealership, the process can take as long as two hours. If you are walking into the dealership with none of these, the process from start to finish can be as long as six hours, according to AutoTrader.
Buying a car is a big decision, and it should not be taken lightly. The pressure from an overly-aggressive salesperson should not be a determining factor in such decision. Thanks to advances in technology, we no longer have to be subjected to such treatment, unless of course you are into that kind of thing. Although we still want to touch, feel, and indeed test drive a vehicle before signing on the dotted line, there must be a better and faster way.
Thankfully, today, we can buy a car from the comfort of our own home, giving us the car buying experience that we’ve always wanted. There are endless number of online car buying sites, and in an effort not to be left behind, many dealerships are offering similar options to car buyers. But the process is still lengthy. In this fast-paced environment we live in, I think we can all agree that we would like to spend as little time at the dealership as possible when shopping for or buying a car.
AutoFi is the next generation in auto financing. The company connects dealers to lenders, making it possible for customers to finance, and purchase vehicles online in minutes, not hours. They provide dealers with a transparent process, the tools to sell and finance vehicles online. Lenders get direct access to customer financing from AutoFi network of dealerships and customers get fast and transparent online financing —— more like a lending club.
The San Francisco-based financial technology company raised $17 million in its pursue to streamline one of the toughest parts in the car buying process, the financing. “When I read that total U.S. auto lending reached a trillion dollars in the second quarter of 2015—and discovered the auto industry has yet to use the internet as a point of sale—I knew there was a substantial opportunity for AutoFi to give consumers the ability to purchase and finance a vehicle entirely online,” said president and co-Founder Jonathan Palan.
Earlier this year, Ford Motor Credit Company announced it was partnering with AutoFi in an effort to make the financing experience better. “By combining our fast and efficient credit-decision process with AutoFi’s online capability, we are making the customer experience faster, smoother and simpler,” said Lee Jelenic, Ford Credit director of mobility. “With its experience in used-vehicle online financing and well-developed platform, AutoFi makes it easier for us to adopt new technology quickly to meet evolving consumer expectations.”
With AutoFi, customers select a vehicle online from one of the company’s enabled dealerships. After filling out the online application, the customer gets a financing decision in 30 seconds or less. Once that is done, the customer can then proceed to selecting the finance and insurance that best fits their needs. The last step in the process is signing the financing documents online and arranging pick up of the vehicle.
AutoFi has set out to prove that car buying does not have to be a draining and stressful experience. Dealers stand to close more deals, quicker. Lenders are able to offer financing to more customer and for their part, customers don’t have to spend part of their weekend at a car dealership filling out paperwork. Everyone wins!
To learn more about their services, visit autofi.com