I just purchased a new car through the USAA buying service. All went great and I got the $500 discount MINI provides. I was also approved for a USAA loan, and the application/approval process was easy. It was under the 1.0% for 36 months, etc. rate offer in November. My car had to be ordered, so the loan approval expired before the car was delivered, but USAA said to just print out the Dealer Electronic Check which was good for 30-days. So, all was good.
This week when the dealer called to say the car was ready, he added "MINI is now offering a 1.40% loan, I know you are using USAA, but you might want to compare rates." I was planning on borrowing just $10000 for 48 or 60 months, but I had lost my loan rate notes. I couldn't remember if I was getting 1.5 or 1.75 for that length of time. My fault for bad record-keeping, but I figured USAA could provide the rate fairly quickly. So I called USAA to review the rates, thinking if it was 1.5 I would still use the USAA loan simply for the convenience of auto pay and my long-standing relationship with USAA. Well, the nice lady said because my loan was already in some processing status, she could not give tell me the rates I applied for, but currently the rate was 3.49% I said that didn't make sense, and explained the Nov rate offer, etc, and that 3.49 was double or triple what I was approved for. She said that the 3.49 was just an estimate and no one could tell me my actual rate until the dealer submitted the paperwork to USAA. I said I couldn't believe that no one at USAA could answer my question, so she agreed to check with the "back office." Moments later she said that the rate wouldn't be finalized until the dealer submitted the paperwork, but the back office said the temporary rate was 2.25. I feared bait and switch so went with the MINI corp loan of 1.40%. I still can't believe that somewhere on my loan approval paperwork at USAA the approved rates for 48/60 months were not listed. I am a 49-year USAA member, and this has been the only frustrating experience in that time.
RetiredinTX, While I can certainly understand your concern on not having to resubmit a new application, please know, that loan applications are only available for a limited time and are unable to be reopened or extended beyond that expiration date. When a loan application expires and financing is still needed, a new application will need to be submitted. This is because there may be updates to the credit profile that were not available when the original application was completed. This could mean rates would be different as it is a new application. Regrettably, we are unable to make an exception to re-open your original loan application. Thank you, Jen
Thanks Jen, but that was not the issue. I was approved for a $40,000 loan that was good through Jan 7th. I explained that my car would not be delivered until the end of January. I was told that was not a problem, I should print off the Dealer Electronic Check, and the check and associated loan rate would still be good for 30 days from the date I printed it, or roughly Feb 4th. I did not need to initiate a new application, as I understood the electronic check was still good for 30 days. Are you saying that, had the dealer submitted the electronic check, my approved loan rate (1.0, 1.5, 1.75) was no longer applicable and the loan would be finalized at prevailing rates -- 2.25 or 3.49? If that is true, it is not what I was told -- I was told twice -- in separate phone calls, that 1.0, 1.5, 1.75 would be the rates associated with my approved loan with the electronic check. The only decision I would have to make after the dealer submitted the electronic check would be to decide the length of the loan. Believe me, had I been told the loan was no longer valid after Jan 7, I would have applied for a new one in late December -- I was told that was not necessary by customer service people at USAA. My credit rating is 830, so applying for a $10,000 loan was not an issue, I was simply led to believe I did not need to do that. There is a happy ending to this story as I took the MINI corp 1.40% loan, but it is disturbing to me that the instructions I received on the phone were not accurate.
RetiredinTX, I am happy to her you were able to purchase your vehicle at a rate of 1.40%. I realize your concerns are with the information you've received since you initially contacted us in November. I will route your concerns to the appropriate team to review and to follow up as soon as possible. Thank you for contacting us today regarding your recent experiences. - Rhonda
Thank you Rhonda. Yes, this is a communication problem it seems. My first note reflected frustration that the "back office" didn't know my approved loan rate, but the customer service lady (or the back office) did not say, "the loan offer expired Jan 7th, and the electronic check does not guarantee a rate." So, that was one issue. But Jen's reply showed there was a second communication problem. I was given incorrect information about the electronic check -- I was told it & the approved rates were good for 30 days and that information was wrong. Anyway, thanks, I do appreciate you forwarding this to the right offices. I personally do not need a follow up from one of the teams, thanks.
USAA called the police one time on me trying to get them to lower my APR. I spent a whole day on the phone hearing miscommunication lies after lies.
I was also told that all refinance are at 9% APR no matter who or their credit looks like.