If you decide to buy a vehicle with a loan, keep in mind that the lender will hold a lien
on your vehicle until the loan is paid off.
The lender will also require you to obtain more extensive auto insurance of the vehicle to protect the value of the loan collateral
. These higher insurance expenses of loan financing are one of the operating costs of a vehicle.
If you borrow, you also commit to making years of loan payments. (Most auto loan terms are three to five years.) You should have a secure source of income over the term of the loan. You should avoid defaulting
on an auto loan, which you automatically do if you stop making auto payments. Defaulting will tarnish your credit history
for years and the lender may seek to repossess your vehicle.
The best course is to make loan payments when they are due and contact your lender if you face a financial hardship. Missing one or two payments or regularly paying late will hurt you in the long run.
To ensure that you make timely payments, you may wish to make automatic payments that are deducted from a savings or checking account. Automatic payments are not always a free service (they often are if you keep your deposits with your lender) but they reduce the time you spend paying bills.