Observations on life

Irresponsible home mortgages, short-sighted student loans and now underwater auto loans …

Is there no end to Americans irresponsible financial behavior? Living within ones means seems only a faded memory.

Car Loans Force More Borrowers Underwater

Some 33% of people who traded in cars to buy new ones in the first nine months of 2019 had negative equity, compared with 28% five years ago and 19% a decade ago, according to car-shopping site Edmunds. Those borrowers owed about $5,000 on average after they traded in their cars, before taking on new loans. Five years ago the average was about $4,000.

Rising car prices have exacerbated an affordability gap that is increasingly getting filled with auto debt. Easy lending standards are perpetuating the cycle, with lenders routinely making car loans with low or no down payments that can last seven years or longer. Wall Street Journal November 9, 2019

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5 replies »

  1. If irresponsible lending is the norm for mortgages, why not for vehicles? You need a mortgage to buy some new car models.

    We have traded high interest rates for low interest rates but higher vehicle prices in my lifetime. My first new pickup truck (vinyl seats and no radio) loan for $8k had an interest rate of 18%, which was great in 1982. The truck cost 1/8 of the price of my first house. I recently spec’d out a new truck on a website for $50k which is about 1/3 of my current house’s value. I just want a plain, vinyl seats pickup truck again. Less things to break but no one sell one. I doubt that I’ll ever own another new truck since in retirement I no longer need it as much as did in the past. Beside, I do not want another mortgage.

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