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Car Loans Glossary For Consumers

Understanding car loan financial terms can be confusing.
Use this glossary of common car loan terms.



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Net Effective Income :

The gross income of the borrower, minus the percentage removed for federal and/or state income tax.

Point-of-Sale (POS) :

The physical location at which a purchase is made by the consumer. Additionally, a method a taking electronic payment from a consumer without the need for a traditional check.

Prepayment Penalty :

A bank imposed fee for early payment of a loan. This penalty is meant to protect the bank from lost income not generated from interest on the loan.

Rate :

See Interest Rate

Refinancing :

To provide new financing for an existing loan. The existing loan is paid with the Proceeds from the new loan. Typically the new loan is at a lower rate, or has a longer term than the previous loan.

Service Charge :

Additionally charges based upon the completion of the defined service. May encompass a number of different charges. Services charges may relate to the financial aspects of processing a loan. A Dealer service charge may include preparation of the vehicle for delivery.

Tax :

Based upon the cost of the vehicle. Contributed to the government for continuation of services. Amount varies from state to state. Some states also place additional taxes on certain types of vehicles. i.e. Luxury tax for cars over a set value, "Gas Guzzler" tax for larger vehicles and SUV's.

Term :

For a loan this is the period of time between the beginning of the loan and the end date, at which time the balance of the loan would be due.

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