RateGenius Review – Is This Auto Loan Service Legit?
When you’re shopping for auto loans, the entire process can be a little intimidating. It’s tough to know whether you’re getting the best rates or whether your monthly payments will be affordable.
Fortunately, RateGenius can help.
RateGenius isn’t an auto loan refinancing bank in and of itself. However, this broker will help you shop for auto loans from its vast network of partners. It can also arrange lease buyout loans, making the entire process easy and convenient.
But is it right for you? In this RateGenius review, we will tell you everything you need to know so you can decide if this service is right for you.
What is RateGenius?
RateGenius is an auto loan refinancing broker that makes it easier to shop for the auto loan that’s right for you.
Created in 1999, this company matches borrowers to auto refinance loans among a large network of lenders. It does not refinance auto loans directly but instead, shops for you within the network.
RateGenius’ mission is to streamline the loan approval process as much as possible. It’s a good choice for you if you have good credit (ideally, a credit score of 720 or higher) and are serious about shopping for an auto refinance loan.
Is RateGenius a Bank?
RateGenius is not a bank, nor is it a loan agency or lender. It is instead merely a platform that can connect you to more than 150 lending partners – typically, credit unions – so you know whether you might be eligible for auto loan refinancing.
How Does RateGenius Work?
RateGenius has a simple, streamlined platform that makes it easy to apply for an auto loan.
You can apply over the phone or online. You’ll need to provide basic information on the application such as:
- Basic identification information, like your name, phone number, email address, and home address
- Your date of birth and Social Security Number
- Income information and employment status
- The vehicle year, make, model, trim, and mileage
- Your current auto lender and existing monthly payment
- Residence type and housing payment
There are a couple of ways you can start your online application. If you’re just shopping around for a loan officer and aren’t serious yet, you can try the Get Pre-Qualified Tool, which will perform a soft credit pull that won’t affect your credit score. This will give you an idea of pre-qualified offers for auto loan options so you know whether RateGenius is a good match for you.
If you complete the formula application, you’ll get results within 48 hours of submission (but usually less). After it’s processed, you’ll be contacted by a loan officer and receive financing offers that you can either accept or decline.
If you accept, you’ll be sent documentation that will need to be notarized and sent back to RateGenius, such as a new loan contract and title transfer paperwork.
Since RateGenius’ services require a hard credit pull, which can temporarily ding your credit report, it’s not a great idea to use it if you have a shaky credit history or aren’t totally sure that you want to get an auto refinance loan in the first place.
Despite the hard credit inquiry and need for a good credit score, RateGenius can make it easier for you to find reasonable terms and services within its lender network.
Now, anyone can use RateGenius – even folks with sub-part credit scores. However, its best rates are reserved for borrowers with excellent credit.
As with any kind of loan, your interest rates and monthly payments will be higher than if you had a better credit score.
In total, you can borrow anywhere from $10,000 to $90,000 with RateGenius’s lenders. You won’t be limited to one vehicle per applicant, either. APR rates vary from as little as 2.92% to as high as 12.59%.
How Much Does RateGenius Cost?
To use RateGenius initially, you don’t need to pay a dime.
However, there will sometimes be prepaid finance charges that are associated with loans you decide to take out. The exact amount of these loans can vary depending on your lender and your state.
RateGenius does sometimes charge a small fee on behalf of the state’s DMV to process the title – however, this is a fee you’d likely have to pay anyway. RateGenius is simply covering the costs.
You may be charged a membership fee of up to $35 (usually closer to $5) to use RateGenius. These fees are used to pay the various banks and credit unions in the lender network. On top of that, RateGenius also charges a $125 flat-rate application fee.
Although this cost might seem steep, the good news is that you can choose to pay the fees upfront or via monthly payments.
RateGenius is a safe, easy-to-use platform. It has a solid rating with the Better Business Bureau and offers a verified service that will keep your personal information and data safe.
Third parties won’t retain any of the data you provide – including your Social Security Number, driver’s license number, or date of birth – unless you choose to select the given lender as your RateGenius auto loan provider.
RateGenius Customer Service
RateGenius has a solid reputation in just about every aspect you can imagine. It’s accredited by the BBB and most consumer reviews agree that this company offers quality customer support and fast service.
You can get in touch with questions at any time, either by calling directly or by using the online web chat feature.
It has a high rating with TrustPilot, with customers saying that RateGenius helped them secure low rates on new and current auto loan deals and did so with exceptional customer service from start to finish.
Only One Hard Credit Pull
One of the biggest benefits of using RateGenius for your auto refinance needs is that it only pulls one time from your credit report. If you shop for auto refinance loans yourself, you might find your credit score being impacted three, four, five, even six times – as many times as you submit a serious inquiry with these lenders.
With RateGenius, your credit report will reflect the inquiry only once. And if RateGenius’s algorithms don’t think lenders will offer you loans, it won’t perform the hard pull at all.
Many Types of Loans Serviced
Although RateGenius is really only helpful if you’re looking for a car loan (and not a mortgage, personal loan, or anything else, for that matter), it provides a variety of loan terms and types.
You can apply for purchase loans, refinance loans, lease buyout, or even private party purchases. Of course, the loan amount, term, and rate will vary depending on the lender, but this is a great platform to find a car loan of just about any kind.
Plus, you aren’t required to accept any kind of deal unless you know this is the right pick for you. It’s a zero-obligation service.
Gap Insurance Available
RateGenius is one of the few types of online providers that offers an affiliated insurance broker who can provide gap insurance. This will protect you from any depreciation should your new car be totaled shortly after the purchase.
Available in all 50 States
There are some auto loan refinance services that are only available in certain locations. With RateGenius auto refinance, you can access the services in all 50 states.
Certain RateGenius Restrictions
It’s important to note that there are some restrictions involved in using RateGenius.
For instance, it isn’t ideal for people who have older cars. Your car must be seven years old or younger and have fewer than 100,000 miles. You can only get a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 120%, making it inopportune for people with older car loans or those who are upside down on their auto loans.
Minimum Income Requirements
In addition to needing to have a decent credit score in order to qualify for the best loan terms, you also have to meet certain income eligibility requirements just to use the service. In general, you’ll need to make at least $2000 per month to qualify.
How Does RateGenius Compare?
There are plenty of other places you can turn to when you’re looking for a way to finance or refinance your auto loan.
Some top choices include LendingTree, Autopay, PenFed, and Auto Credit Express.
LendingTree offers faster service than just about any other loan provider, with APR rates starting at 2.99% and approval in just five minutes. That said, RateGenius is easier to use, especially if you’re new to shopping for auto loans or refinance loans.
Another option is Autopay. Autopay has the best variety when it comes to refinancing options, with a 94% loan approval rate and the ability to accept applicants automatically. However, RateGenius almost always offers better rates, especially if your credit score is on the lower side.
Those aren’t the only competitors to RateGenius, of course, but they are two of the most common.
Don’t be afraid to shop around! There’s a provider out there for everyone. However, for most people, RateGenius still comes out on top.
Is RateGenius Reliable?
RateGenius auto refinance is a great option if you’re serious about getting a new auto loan and don’t want to shop around with multiple lenders.
It’s accredited with the Better Business Bureau and has an A-rating, so while you’ll need to read the fine print to make sure it’s right for you, don’t worry – you aren’t dealing with yet another typical dealer scam here!
RateGenius is a fast, reliable, and secure way to get detailed information on which auto loans might be right for you. So give it a try today!