Guide to business vehicle finance in South Africa
A business vehicle finance loan is also known as a business car loan. It is a specific type of financing option that gives you cash for buying vehicles that you use for your business. If you’re an entrepreneur looking for such a loan, several options are available for you in South Africa.
In this article, we will look at the ins and outs of business car loans. Here’s a brief look at what we will cover:
- Business vehicle finance options;
- How it works with business car loans;
- Benefits of business vehicle finance;
- How to choose the best business car loan; and
- How to apply for business car finance;
Types of business vehicle finance loans
- Commercial hire purchase. You can hire a car from a lender for a specified period. Next, you pay monthly instalments throughout the hire. If you finish paying for the vehicle after the hire term is over, you can take ownership of the car.
- Business loan. Standard business loans can also be used by businesses to fund vehicle purchases. There are a lot of options available in this class of loans. You can take a term loan or make use of a line of credit.
- Car loan. Regular car loans can also be used by business people to finance the purchase of business vehicles.
How it works with business car loans
- Shop for the vehicle: Choose the car you want to buy for your business.
- Apply for your loan: Next, agree on the interest rate and select a monthly repayment amount that you are comfortable with. Finally, you will have to select a payment period.
- Interest rates: The vehicle finance loans feature either fixed or variable interest rates.
- Fees and charges: The business will be charged an initiation fee as part of the loan application process. There is also a monthly service fee that comes with the loan. This fee can be paid as part of the monthly instalment.
- Deposit: Usually, an upfront deposit might be required depending on the risk assessment.
- Insurance for the vehicle: You will have to take a comprehensive car insurance policy on the financed business car for the length of the loan.
- Credit life Insurance: Most business vehicle finance loans feature affordable Credit Protection Plans.
- Balloon payment: In some instances, you can pay lower monthly instalments and then make a lump sum balloon deposit at the end of the vehicle finance loan period.
- Paying back the loan: The ownership of the car will be transferred to you once the loan has been paid in full. However, since most business vehicle loans are secured, if you fail to make repayments, the lender will repossess the vehicle.
- Early repayment: Depending on the lender, you can be able to opt for an early settlement. This might come with or without a fee.
What types of vehicles can you get using business vehicle finance?
- Passenger vehicles
- Heavy commercial vehicles
- Farm vehicles
- Mobile plant
- Light delivery trucks
How to choose the best business car loan
Compare loan terms from different lenders. This can be done effectively by using a business vehicle finance calculator. The calculator will show you the money you will pay each month and over what period. With this result, you can calculate the total cost of the loan and hence compare which loan is most affordable.
Using a business vehicle finance calculator
The business vehicle finance calculator is an important tool that will allow you to have a rough idea of the monthly instalments before you make an application. To use this calculator, you have to enter the amount you need and the loan repayment term. It will then give you a quick estimate of the monthly instalment. You should, however, know that the figure you will get is only an estimate and it might differ from the actual amount by the lender.
How to apply for business car finance
The application process can be done online. Once you have picked a lender from our comparison tables, proceed to click the “Go to Site” button for that lender. You will then be directed to their vehicle finance loan application page. The following are some of the general business vehicle finance requirements:
- Your company registration and VAT number
- The business banking details
- Balance sheet and cash flow information
- Your information and registered business address
- The personal information of the Director, or Trustee
- Details of the vehicle you wish to purchase
- Declaration of business assets
You will be required to manually upload the supporting documents from your computer once you have successfully finished the application process.
Getting the best out of your business vehicle loan
Choose a loan term that will not strain your business’s budget. When taking out a business vehicle finance loan, you have to strike a balance between a longer loan term and not to pay too much in interest.
You should also do your research before applying for the loan. Knowing the conditions and terms of your loan will help you know what to do when things do not go according to plan.
Benefits of business car finance loans
These types of loans often feature longer repayment terms as compared to other types of loans.
This means that your monthly instalment will likely be lower and much easier to afford.
If you choose to use a secured option for your loan, it will have a much lower interest rate than would an unsecured loan. You can use the vehicle you will purchase as security for the vehicle finance loan. If you do not pay up, the lender can repossess that vehicle and recover their money from it.
When taking out ta business vehicle loan, you use the car that you are purchasing as collateral. That means that you do not have to put up other assets belonging to your business as security.
Your business might get some tax benefits depending on the amount of money that you spend and the vehicle financing option that you choose.
Business Auto Loan Repayment Terms and Structure
Most business car loan financing loans are structured, similar to regular business term loans. The payments are made on a monthly basis via debit order. You might, however, see some variation like balloon payment options.
It is therefore important to make sure that you understand how your particular loan works before making your application. Also, due to the higher amounts of money associated with these types of loans, the terms are usually on the longer side. They range anywhere from 1 year to 7 years.
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