I'm starting this simply as a warning to other veterans. I feel like I've been baited and switched twice on autoloans through USAA. It seems I'm not alone in this reading through the threads.
Both times I've gone to buy a car I called USAA ahead of time so I could figure out the APR to expect, both times I was told one thing and got a totally different rate when actually buying the car.
The most recent one really takes the cake.
I looked up all the rate information on USAA's website, got my credit score of 799 from experian (which they show is excellent)...and most others seem to agree.
I called USAA and was told that since I was purchasing the vehicle from a sourced dealer I would get 2.99 (as shown on their site), which checked with my credit score and research.
The next day I went to buy the car and was told 4.54% was the best they could do (1.5% higher). The dealer was able to easily beat that rate and USAA came down to 3.52 to compete, but still not what I was told on the phone.
On discussion with the USAA rep, I was told I needed an 800 credit score to qualify for 2.99 and she had pulled a 790. DEAR GOD! The banks control the credit score and wouldn't my asset worth + 15 years of faithfulness + already paying off a car loan with them equate enough to give me that extra 0.5%...nope.
I've never really had any gripes with USAA up to this point, but having this happen to me twice makes me wary of their other services. As I started doing research on other banks, I've found better rates on just about everything so I don't think my loyalty is going to hold out on this one.
I just had to do something similar. I've had several loans with USAA over the years and never really tried anywhere else as I had this (proven to be false) belief that they took care of veterans. I tried to refinance through USAA several times over the years at a lower rate but each time they gave me a higher rate than my original. I just blindly accepted this as it must be me and my credit. Not USAA and their loan practices.
I went to USAA for a refinance on a loan again and for the last time, I've had with them since 2015. I felt it was a little high when I got it back in 2015 but felt it was the best I could get since USAA takes care of Veterans. The apr was 8.49% at that time. Fast forward to 2018 and my refinance of the vehicle. I felt I should be able to get a lower rate since I've not missed a single payment with them on any of my loans through them and my credit was much better than in 2015. They came back with an offer to refinance at 16.14%. I was told it was computer determined and there was nothing they could do about it and that was the best rate I could get. This is when I decided to really look for a loan elsewhere. I found one at 5%. But USAA couldn't do any better than 16.14%?
I had three auto loans with USAA until a few days ago. I now have ZERO. They would not give me a rate, would not even try to match a rate by others and I felt my loyalty to them over the years meant nothing to them. They just wanted to overcharge me for my loans. Every loan I had with them was much higher than I found elsewhere. It's sad. I sincerely felt 'connected' to USAA until this. It felt like they were taking care of me when now it seemed they had been just using my veteran status and their support for veterans as a way to overcharge on loans. I am terribly disappointed in being treated in such a way for such a long time thinking all the while that they were looking out for the veteran. How many thousands of dollars in interest have I overpaid due to my loyalty to them? I had a $45,000 loan with them and still owed almost $27,000 in principal after three years. That's about $11,000 in interest in three years on ONE vehicle. I had three loans and the one I'm posting about was the one with the lowest interest rate I had through them.
I still have a single loan through them at a ridiculous interest rate of 14.19%. I will be looking to get it somewhere else too or just pay it off early. I hate to, but I feel I am being taken advantage of and basically taken as a fool. I was a fool, but not longer.
I will admit, for now, that I still have their insurance. But I'm going to look around now, where I never have before, to see if they truly are giving the Veteran the best deal. If they are I will keep them. If not I will leave. My loyalty to them does not exist anymore.
They also completely turned me down for a loan on a new vehicle. I went elsewhere and got the loan at a good rate, can't remember the rate off the top of my head, and I am driving a brand new vehicle where USAA wouldn't even give me anything. I got an almost $60,000 loan when USAA wouldn't give me a dime and took almost two weeks to turn me down. I was already driving my new ride before I even heard back from USAA.
This is, of course, my new opinion on USAA and others may have fared much better than me with them. I'm just posting what happened to me.
It's not that I feel that way. I am telling you what has happened over the years. You guys can look at what you have offered me over the years and see it's not a feeling. It's your business practices. I have recommended you guys over the years to hundreds of fellow military/veterans. I actually started using you because you were recommended by another soldier to me plus your advertising sold me on you guys. And yes your employees are very nice. I have never been mistreated over the phone. They are very respectful and very nice. I give your employees a solid 5/5 stars. They are the best.
I took the bait and was a pawn that gave free advertisement to you guys by way of mouth. I'm afraid that you guys push the veteran angle so much that you will still get loyal people like I was coming in every day. So it doesn't matter to you that when someone like me sees the light and you know you don't have to truly take care of veterans like you advertise because there are hundreds of younger naive new veterans to take my place every day.
I was upside down in the vehicles I traded off for the new one because of the high interest I was paying to you guys. So much was going to interest that the vehicles depreciated at a much higher rate so I had to get a loan to cover the upside down amount I was in with the loans through you guys. That's a fact. You made your money off of me and I highly doubt the loss of my business did anything to you as I am just one person and there are plenty of people promoting you guys so you don't care about me as an individual. I understand it's a business and you need to make money. That's not an issue. The problem is that you are all over the military/veteran angle when you don't seem to care about the individual soldier/veteran. The advertising brings them in, in droves. You won't miss me I'm sure. You aren't going to send me a check for the outrageous overpayment of interest on my loans. You are just going to look into it. Then what? Tell me in an email that there was nothing better you could offer? What is it that you looking into it going to do? Will it give me back some of the high interest I paid you? Are you going to try and win me back? No. It will do nothing. I will be an old post on your message board. Nothing more.
I'm not trying to be difficult. I'm just worried there are so many more military/veteran out there that believe in loyalty to a fault. So they can be taken advantage of by companies that do not appreciate our loyalty to them. Soldiers tend to be way more loyal to others than most other people. Of course, you know that. That's part of your advertising.
I held USAA in high regard. I felt as though I was part of something special. Though out of the military, still a part of the military in a way. Only veterans need to apply.
So unless you are willing to make a wrong, right I don't know what you are going to look at with my history with you. I will tell you, you will never find a missed payment.
After 30 years I no longer have my multiple vehicles with USAA. I had only ever had one claim, over 20 years ago until 3 years ago. My son, who was 17, skidded off an icy road and went into a ditch. I had just put nearly $5000 into rebuilding a 90s Chevy truck for him and it had only been complete and on the road for 2 weeks. The body shop(no more adjusters) declared it a total loss, and my frustration with USAA had only just begun. They absolutely refused to acknowledge my receipts for the completely rebuilt motor and new suspension and tires! So, my full coverage only paid $3,000 versus the actual value of around $7,000. It was a sweet truck! Then, I was treated so insultingly by the agents, that I began to think I might not even get the 3k! They were rude, and impossible to get ahold of, and were implying that I was being dishonest in my claim and were "investigating". 40 days later...I figured out, on my own, what the "issue" was- the VIN on my claim "didnt match" the VIN on the policy. WHY? Because the nimrod at the body shop took the VIN off the inside of the door! Absolutely the worst, most stressful, experience I have had! So, "WHY did I not change companies?" was what I was asking myself last year when I made a small claim on my renters policy- the first ever, for $1,200. THE SAME BS AGAIN! I still bank here, but have a happy new insurance home with a real person in a real insurance office now and I highly recommend it! These stories are sad and so disappointing. They should be ashamed! Those TV commercials perpetrate a fraud!
@ 30 yrs,
Thank you for 30 years of membership. However, it is disheartening to hear about your claim experience on your two previous claims, and I definitely want to have your concerns reviewed further. I have escalated your situation to our CEO Member Relations Team who will be reaching out to you to address your concerns. ~Mike
@FlyingForFun, That whole FICO score thing seems to be a a scam--just like the way USAA uses it to determine who gets a loan and who doesn't. Seems CSRs can tell you whatever they want--and they're probably getting that from their leadership. I think it's just a way to see how many people will take the bait and then be brainwashed to just take it. It's probably an industry wide tactic, but USAA's use of veterans to pull the wool over their heads--bothers me. I've found dealerships to be more competitive than USAA for several years now. They are no longer my first or second option for any kind of loan. In fact, I've moved all my banking/investments to a financial institution that will give me better discount rates for doing business with them. You just have to shop around. Good luck.