There is a large selection of car finance brokers you could use for your next car loan. But how can you tell if the one you’ve selected one you can trust?
Is Your Car Finance Broker Licensed?
Under the current legislation, any credit assistance providers are required to either be fully licenced, or a credit representative of an Australian Credit Licence holder. If your car finance broker isn’t either of these, you should probably try and find one that is, as they may not be trading legally.
If they hold their own Australian Credit Licence, they will require to have certain protections in place for the consumer, which would include having adequate Professional Indemnity Insurance and to be a member of an external disputes resolutions company, such as the Financial Ombudsman Services (“FOS”) or the Credit Ombudsman Services Limited (“COSL”)
Your car finance broker should have a decent selection of lenders available, which will give you a greater chance of achieving the best deal for your circumstances. As every lender has completely different criteria in how they analyse loans or interest rates, this is important when selecting your next car finance broker.
You should be able to get an idea of the level of experience the finance broker has, by doing some research to find out how long their business has been in operation for. An established business should have an about us page that covers who runs the business, what it does and for how long it’s done it. If you can’t find this kind of information, you can use free websites, such as ASIC or the ABR to do business name or entity searches. LinkedIn or Facebook are also good tools which most businesses are active on these days.
Size of the Business
By searching the business’ ABN online, you will be able to see if they are GST registered or not. If the business is not GST registered, it would most likely be a very small operation as their turnover is under the GST registration threshold, which is $75,000 at the time of writing. The smaller the business, the less volumes they would give to their lenders, which may mean they won’t have access to the better deals available in comparison to those companies that are larger and provide more business.
Do They Have a Physical Location?
This can be important to make sure that you are dealing with a company that is in Australia. Fraud on the internet is a real concern and it becomes more difficult when the fraudsters are overseas. Check the location online through Google Maps, or other free programs and you can even do a Yellow Pages search to see if they are listed there with matching details. Ring the phone number listed on their website and request if you can come and visit them, even if it is not your intention. These are just some measures that you can take to find out if they are Australian based.