By Lonnie Fritz, Market Professional, Construction Industries, Caterpillar Inc.
Shopping for heavy equipment? There are plenty of financing deals out there; but before you start talking with lenders, make sure you can answer these questions.
1. Have we considered all the options?
Maybe a new machine is exactly what you need. But you might be equally successful with a low-hour used model, a factory rebuilt unit or a longer-term rental. A capital lease could be an option, too, — if you want to own the asset eventually. Operating leases provide similar leasing flexibility. The point is, there are multiple paths to success. Take time to consider them all.
2. What can we afford?
Many factors affect affordability — cash flow, down payment size, interest rates, contract terms and more. Additionally, investment in technology should be considered in your affordability assessment. The affordability calculator at CatFinancial.com can give you a quick handle on your financial limits. Find it here.
3. How will the monthly payment fit into our budget?
Whether you’re financing or leasing, you want to end up with a monthly payment that meets all your business objectives. To see how changes in price, down payment, interest rate and other factors affect monthly payment, check out the payment calculator at CatFinancial.com. Find it here.
4. What does our credit score look like, and are there any issues we may need to explain?
Review your credit report before reaching out to a lender. Correct any inaccuracies and update any information that’s no longer current. If there are negative things in the report, be prepared to explain them.
When you’ve answered these questions and are ready to take the next step, look for a financial services organization that treats you like a partner — someone with the knowledge, resources and capabilities to help you succeed. Cat Financial can be that partner. Their Field Reps are on the ground and ready to help you with your financing needs. Don’t settle for anything less!