I refinanced.

I know, I know, clickbait if there ever were any…

Having recently read DDSW’s post on getting below $80,000.00 in student loan debt, after making it to that milestone myself, it shouldn’t be surprising that despite a great relationship with my current student loan lender, PenFed, that refinancing is still on my mind. For the moment, however, I am talking about a refinance of a different kind. Today, I refinanced my auto loan.

Prior to refinancing, the terms for my auto loan with US Bank weren’t bad.

Despite a required minimum payment of $249.84, I have always made a $300.00 monthly payment because I have every intention of having all of my student and commercial debt paid before I turned 40. What I have found is that the stronger your financial position, the “less bad” your banking options generally are. So I figured, a little over a year later, with $30,000.00 less in student loan debt, and $25,000.00 in more income, and I could probably get an even better “less bad” deal. And I was right…with PenFed!

PenFed is consistently bombarding my email account with banking products, and while I generally ignore them, they finally enticed me to click with a “$150.00 rebate when you refinance your auto loan” email. Initially, I didn’t know how much sense it made to refinance. While 3.21% with US Bank isn’t amazing, it also isn’t “bad” for a used car and unless I could get PenFed’s rock bottom rate of 2.39%, I didn’t know how much I would save by refinancing. However, the more I thought about it, the more I acknowledged that any money saved is a reason to refinance and that my only reason for not refinancing was the minor inconvenience of the loan payoff process. So I applied.

And I got their rock bottom rate for used cars! A few hours later and I am still happy with my decision. Not only did I secure a better rate, my minimum payment is still less than what I usually pay, with a term that ends more than 9 months before my 40th birthday. Additionally, unlike with traditional student loan lenders, having my educational and auto loans with PenFed gives me an opportunity to build my relationship with a credit union, which could potentially be useful down the road…the $150.00 rebate isn’t bad either.

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