Outside Financial, an independent auto loan marketplace, launched its so-called consumer-first platform that it claims brings transparency to auto finance. The company is the first to offer full auto loan packages outside of the dealership, which can save customers $1,000 to $3,000. Outside Financial also arranges refinances for existing borrowers. Outside Financial is launching with three lender partners, along with two vehicle service contracts (VSC) and GAP waiver providers. The company plans to add additional partners.
In 2017, Americans spent $568.6 billion in auto loans1, yet 60 percent of buyers don’t know they can bring their own financing to the dealership. The company’s new Outside Financial (OF) Markup Index* reveals that, on average, new car buyers are charged $1,717 in hidden markups when arranging their loans through a dealer. About 44% of American adults are relying on an auto loan to pay for a vehicle. Worse, 4.1% of active accounts were delinquent 90 days or more at the end of 2017.
“Auto loans are far less transparent than other loans like mortgages, to the detriment of consumers, and it’s reached a breaking point,” said Jon Friedland, co-founder and CEO of Outside Financial. “Consumers deserve a simple, fair, and transparent auto loan experience.”
“Cars are the second biggest purchase most Americans ever make, but it’s more difficult to shop for financing than for price, make, model, or color,” said Sonia Steinway, co-founder and president.
Outside Financial was founded by Friedland, a 20-year institutional investor who specialized in the auto retail, consumer finance, and e-commerce industries, and Steinway, an attorney focused on consumer finance regulation. Both claim to be consumer advocates trying to bring transparency to the auto loan industry. The company has raised a $1.5 million seed round to develop its innovative marketplace and fill out its executive team with financial, legal, and tech expertise.
*OF Auto Loan Markup Index
The OF Auto Loan Markup Index analyzes public data from the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Reserve and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and industry sources, including the National Automobile Dealers Association, DealerStrong, and Auto Finance News. Coupled with qualitative interviews of current and former automobile finance executives, the Index details consumer costs from 2010 to 2017 on auto loans arranged by dealerships. The index is updated monthly and is available at www.OutsideFinancial.com/MarkupIndex.
1 Accenture, https://www.finder.com/car-loan-statistics