Rob Looker

Prepare your adventure with the road trip planner
  Ideas and resources to get the wheels turning There’s nothing quite like the freedom, independence and sense of discovery you get on a road trip, and there are few better places to load up and hit the highway than America. Whether you’re looking to get away in summer or at other times of the year, here are some ideas to get you started, along with tips for what to take, what to eat, what to listen to, and how to prepare your vehicle. Get perusing, get planning, and enjoy the ride.   Where to go: Destinations and experiences California… Read More

10 Cool new cars under $18K
  Are fun, stylish, versatile and affordable on your new-car wish list? If so, Kelley Blue Book’s latest recommendations of quality cars costing less than $18,000 are worth perusing. The automotive guide’s annual compilation of cool, budget-friendly vehicles includes a little expert comment about each car’s appeal as well as information on consumer ratings, miles per gallon and engine size, plus images and videos to help your car-buying decisions. Among the 2017 models it has rated and ranked are three newcomers, along with some reliable contenders. Leading the way is the Mazda3, the “all-time champion” that appears in the top… Read More

Understanding an upside-down car loan and the options for changing vehicles
What is an upside-down car loan? An upside-down car loan is a situation in which you simply owe the lender more than the vehicle is worth. For example, you still have $12,000 outstanding on your auto loan, but the vehicle’s value is just $9,000, so you’re upside down by $3,000. It’s also known as negative equity or being “under water,” and it’s a growing problem in the U.S., according to Debt.org, a debt help organization. How an upside-down car loan might occur There are numerous ways negative equity on a vehicle may arise. Common scenarios include: Depreciation– Cars inevitably lose… Read More

The longest-lasting cars and trucks – Vehicles that go the extra mile
  If you’re looking to buy a car from among the longest lasting and most reliable on the road, you’re in good company. Many buyers in the U.S. consider the longevity of a vehicle to be important when shopping. Often, buyers do not actually intend to own the vehicle for its entire lifespan, but rather, they see a correlation between longevity and a vehicle that is mechanically dependable with routine maintenance. In reality, this correlation does not always hold; sometimes vehicles that last a long time require more maintenance than others to do so. Even so, buyers still often associate… Read More

‘Cars 3’ lines up with an inspirational tale
  It’s tough at the top, even for a serial winner like Lightning McQueen. The latest lap of Disney-Pixar’s “Cars” franchise, “Cars 3,” is a great sports comeback story that looks set to inspire as well as entertain young moviegoers this summer. The multi-Piston Cup winner, voiced by Owen Wilson, is having a hard time keeping up with the new generation of younger, faster cars and the movie opens with McQueen crashing out of a race in spectacular style. In fact, he faces being completely pushed out of the sport he loves, the makers tell us, but you can bet… Read More

What is a lien on a car?
  How to know lien from loan, and what to keep in mind when buying and selling a vehicle If you’ve been approved for a car loan you’re likely to encounter the term “lien,” but the chances you’ll know what it means may not be quite so great. A lien on a car is like a safeguard for the lender or other interested party. When you take out an auto loan, a lien is created, which is a lender’s legal right to possession of the vehicle until the loan is repaid. That means if you default on the loan, like… Read More

How Does Refinancing a Car Work?
    It’s a simple principle. Refinancing a car is a process where an existing car loan is paid off and replaced with a new one, often with a different lender, that has new agreed upon terms. Many people want to refinance a car to save money or find terms that are otherwise better suited to their situation. There are various possible outcomes, but three things borrowers often look for are a lower interest rate, different loan duration or monthly payment amount. Let’s look at these areas in more detail. 3 Potential advantages to refinancing an auto loan: 1. Lower… Read More

Going off the grid for Memorial Day weekend
5 scenic park getaways to unplug and unwind Why not make the most of the long Memorial Day weekend with a break from the norm? These five trips will feel a world away from home, yet are surprisingly accessible. So get ready to relax and enjoy some of America’s finest state parks and protected areas. You might be able to finally test the AWD on the SUV, too.   Adirondack Park, NY At more than six million acres in size and with 2,000 miles of hiking trails, this place is plenty big enough to get lost in nature – in… Read More

What to know when buying a car out of state
Sometimes the perfect car is just a short trip to the dealership away. Other times, you’re looking at buying a car out of state – and that comes with a bit more legwork. Doing your research first, however, will put you on the front foot. Tips for buying across state lines Check your home state requirements Check the laws that affect registering an out-of-state vehicle with your own state’s department of motor vehicles (DMV) or vehicle registry body to get an overview of the process. Look at requirements for vehicle standards, including emissions, inspections, transporting the vehicle and any other… Read More

Try the free RoadLoans app for car shopping made easy
    When was the last time you shopped for a vehicle? Whether you’ve clocked plenty of miles or are new to it all, the RoadLoans app can make the experience fast, simple and hassle free. Simply downloading the app to your iPhone or Android phone places handy auto financing and car-shopping tools right in the palm of your hand; available to help whenever and wherever you want. Here’s what you can do: Estimate a car payment – You don’t want to bite off more than you can chew, and the payment calculator enables users to gauge what an affordable… Read More

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