Skip to Main Content

RateGenius auto loans: 2024 review

2024-01-01 13:59:00

At a glance

4.1
Rating: 4.1 stars out of 5

Bankrate Score

  • Repayment options
    Rating: 4.3 stars out of 5
  • Affordability
    Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
  • Customer Experience
    Rating: 4.2 stars out of 5
  • Transparency
    Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Compare auto loan rates
See Rates

About RateGenius

  • Moneybag

    Loan amount

    $8,000-$150,000

  • Credit Good

    Min. credit score

    Not specified

  • Rates

    APR from

    4.99%

  • Funds available in

    24-48 hours

RateGenius auto loans are best for comparing loan offers

Unlike traditional lenders, RateGenius is a loan marketplace. This means that it works with a network of different lenders and helps match borrowers with the best loan for their specific needs. Once you receive offers you can easily compare them side by side. This is ideal for a borrower who is unsure of what type of loan they can afford or are looking for. RateGenius will handle much of the heavy lifting with many of its partners even offering the ability to prequalify via a soft credit check.

RateGenius pros and cons

Although RateGenius works with a large network of over 150 lenders, consider both the benefits and drawbacks before hitting apply.

Green circle with a checkmark inside

Pros

  • Perfect credit not required
  • Interest rates published online
  • Co-applicants permitted
Red circle with an X inside

Cons

  • Fees
  • Limited loan options
  • Restrictions
RateGenius is an online platform that connects borrowers with lenders that offer auto refinancing. There are over 150 lenders in the network, and you can have your information shopped around with no impact on your credit score. If there is a match and you decide to move forward, your application can be processed within 24 to 48 hours. 
 

Do you qualify?

To qualify with RateGenius you must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Have a loan balance of at least $8,000.
  • Have at least 24 months remaining on your current loan
  • Have a steady source of income that’s deemed satisfactory by the lender.
  • Own a personal use vehicle that’s under 10 years old with less than 120,000 miles.

If you plan to use a co-applicant, they must live in the same state as you and be present when you are applying for a loan.

RateGenius versus Upstart

Upstart similarly offers borrowers the ability to refinance their vehicles from the comfort of home, though their qualification requirements differ. Upstart is a great option for those lacking a lengthy credit history as approval criteria include factors like employment rather than credit alone. Both lenders boast similar loan amounts.

See our RateGenius vs. Upstart guide

RateGenius versus LendingClub

Unlike RateGenius, LendingClub provides its own refinancing loans. Refinancing with RateGenius carries comparatively less stringent requirements comparatively. Borrowers with RateGenius, for example, must have a balance of at least $8,000, whereas LendingClub sets its minimum at $4,000. Check out our full RateGenius vs. LendingClub comparison for more help choosing between the two.

See our RateGenius vs. LendingClub guide

What we like and what we don’t like

Available in all 50 states, RateGenius may help you save a bundle on your auto loan or buy out your lease without doing a ton of legwork. However, there are also drawbacks to be mindful of before using the platform. 

What we like 

  • Perfect credit not required: The RateGenius network is extensive, and some lenders work with applicants with low credit scores.
  • Interest rates published online: You can find the current auto refinance rates by credit rating on the website, and the figures are updated daily.
  • Co-applicants permitted: If you’re unable to meet the lender’s income or credit requirements, you can include a co-applicant when you apply to strengthen your approval odds. 

What we don’t like 

  • Fees: Some lenders in the RateGenius network assess prepaid finance charges and title processing fees.
  • Limited loan options: Auto purchase loans aren’t available through RateGenius. Borrowers are limited to refinancing and lease buyout loans.
  • Restrictions: Borrowers can only refinance cars, trucks and SUVs with a minimum loan balance of at least $8,000 and amounts cap out at $150,000 — a smaller range than many rivals offer.

How to contact RateGenius

Representatives are available by phone at 866-728-3436 or email at hello@rategenius.com to help you apply or address any questions you may have. RateGenius does not list its business hours on its website. While it does not offer a mobile app, you can receive live help through the online chat tool. 

Auto loan types offered 

Through the site’s matching capabilities, you can secure auto loan refinancing and lease buyout loan offers.

Auto loan refinancing 

  • Amounts: $8,000-$150,000
  • Terms: 12-96 months
  • APR: Starting at 4.99%

Refinancing your car loan through a lender in the RateGenius network could be a smart financial move for a few reasons. Refinancing could make sense if your monthly payment is too high or your credit score has improved, potentially qualifying you for a better interest rate. It is also ideal for borrowers who want to shorten their loan term to save on interest or remove someone from the current auto loan. 

Lease buyout

  • Amounts: $8,000-$150,000
  • Terms: 12-96 months
  • APR: Starting at 4.99%

The lenders in the RateGenius network offer lease buyout loans if you plan to keep your leased vehicle. You don’t necessarily have to wait until the lease is up to apply for financing. But it could be more cost effective to wait until the lease term ends so you can avoid penalties associated with ending your lease early. 

How to apply for a loan with RateGenius 

Applying for an auto loan with RateGenius is easy, and it only takes 24 to 48 hours to complete the process and receive your funds. To get started, complete the online application or call RateGenius to apply by phone.

You will need to provide your contact information, the name of your current lender, current monthly payment and vehicle information.

RateGenius will share your information with lenders in its network to determine if there is a potential match. If you choose to apply with a lender, submit a formal application and any required documents. Upon approval, the lender will send the loan documents electronically for you to review and sign or mail them to your doorstep in a pre-paid postage envelope. 

RateGenius will share your information with lenders in its network to determine if there is a potential match. If you choose to apply with a lender, submit a formal application and any required documents. Upon approval, the lender will send the loan documents electronically for you to review and sign or mail them to your doorstep in a pre-paid postage envelope. 

Features and additional perks

Loans with RateGenius serve borrowers in all 50 states and work with a large number of lenders that cater to a range of different credit backgrounds. One standout feature of this process is the ability to compare different loan options available in the network. 

Fees and penalties 

RateGenius’s website does not list specific fees but does disclose the possibility of a prepayment penalty when you pay off your original auto loan. Along with that, there will likely be a fee to process the vehicle title with the DMV.

RateGenius FAQs

How Bankrate rates RateGenius

Overall score 4.1
Repayment options 4.3 RateGenius’s high minimum loan amount knocks an otherwise good availability score down.
Affordability 3.5 With 150 lenders on board, RateGenius can offer some leniency around qualification standards, though some charge fees.
Customer experience 4.2 A quick funding turnaround time helps boost RateGenius’s score.
Transparency 4.5 RateGenius allows prequalification but only publishes some fees.

Methodology 

The Bankrate team assessed more than 35 auto lenders to find the best. To rate lenders specializing in auto refinance loans, Bankrate considers 16 different criteria, including the loan amount, disclosed APR and acceptance criteria. Each lender receives a Bankrate score based on four categories

  • Availability: This accounts for loan amounts, vehicle restrictions and availability in each state. Lenders that serve customers nationwide with flexible loan amounts rank higher.
  • Affordability: Primarily, this section covers expected APR, acceptance criteria, discounts for autopay and the number of fees. Lenders with the lowest rates, fewer fees and most generous acceptance criteria receive higher scores.
  • Customer experience: Our team looked at how easy it is for customers to apply for and manage their loans. Criteria include online access, support availability, funding timeline, option for automatic payment and app availability.
  • Transparency: This includes prequalification and disclosure of rates and fees. We favored lenders that make it easy for customers to preview possible costs.

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by Bankrate.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the lender’s website for the most current information.

Written by
Allison Martin
Contributor, Personal Finance

Allison Martin is a contributor to Bankrate covering personal finance, including mortgages, auto loans and small business loans. Martin’s work began over 10 years ago as a digital content strategist, and she’s since been published in several leading outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, MSN Money, MoneyTalksNews, Investopedia, Experian and Credit.com. Martin, a Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFE), also shares her passion for financial literacy and entrepreneurship with others through interactive workshops and programs.

Edited by Editor, Personal and Auto Loans