Financing With CarHub: An Interview With Financial Services Director
Posted on February 2, 2021
Ah, financing! Depending on where you are in the process, this may be your favourite or least favourite term. For many people, the financing process is a minefield of questions and a little bit confusing, to boot.
We’ve heard our customers' concerns about this process. That’s why we decided to sit down with CarHub’s Financial Services Director, Abdul Rahman Sheikh, to get a full picture of what the CarHub Automotive Group financial assessment and credit approval process looks like.
Abdul brings over 20 years of experience to the table and he was more than up to the task of giving us a full overview of the financing process.
Curious? Excited? We bet you are. Let’s get into it!
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: My name is Abdul Rahman, I’m the Financial Services Director for the CarHub Automotive Group. I help to maintain our credit approval process and take care of the Financial Services department.
CarHub: We’re going to be chatting about something that is often a bit of a murky subject for people who are in the market for a new or a pre-owned vehicle, which is financing and financing through their car dealership, specifically. We know that this is your area of expertise, so let’s get into a few questions!
What is the biggest misconception of people who are looking to finance through CarHub Automotive Group?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: I would say, that when a lot of people come in, they have a wall in front of them, and they’re scared that the dealership is going to try to rip them off. There’s a stigma attached with financing through a dealership but in actual fact, the dealership has millions of dollars of referral business with the five main, chartered banks that we deal with. What we try to do is get you the best rate of approval with the most competitive rate that we can based on your personal credit situation. So it’s not just about getting you the lowest rate, but about getting you a rate that matches your lifestyle and your budget.
CarHub: Would you say that it’s advisable to get preapproved before shopping for a vehicle?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: As per pre-approval, I think it can save you a lot of time. If you fill out a credit application and email it to one of our Finance Specialists and we can steer you toward some options for vehicles that you can afford. It’s a free service of ours, so we can take a look at your current credit situation and not allow you to be let down if the results aren’t what you were hoping for. Or, maybe you’ll qualify for more than you previously thought.
Carhub: What are the benefits to applying for financing through CarHub rather than applying elsewhere?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: I would say the biggest benefit is that we have competitive rates because of our relationships with the chartered banks and because of the sheer amount of volume that we do every month. We have cars that range in price from 5000 all the way to 500,000, so we have a large network of brokerages and banks that we deal with that would benefit you immensely in dealing with us because we have that knowledge of how to deal with the banks to get you what you need.
CarHub: Can you walk me through the process of obtaining financing through CarHub?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: The process of obtaining financing is very easy through CarHub, we just need to verify your identity, we ask that you bring paystubs if you have them, fill out a credit application and we take care of the rest. We enter your information into a system called Dealertrack and through Dealertrack we look at your credit score and at the best bank to offer you the most competitive rate possible.
We have super-quick answers. Probably the fastest answer that I’ve had was within a minute. Submitted, approved. Boom! That simple.
CarHub: Wow! They must have been pretty happy.
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: Oh yeah, they were happy.
CarHub: Are there any common mistakes that people make when they come in for financing that should be avoided?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: The biggest one is withholding information. If you give us a full picture of your financial information, we’ll have a better sense of what banks to deal with. If you qualify for A-lending and you have a relatively high credit score it’s different but if you qualify for B-lending and you give us all of your information upfront, we can send it to the right lender who will still get you the best rate that we can possibly get you.
CarHub: Is there anything that people can do to expedite the process of obtaining financing?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: If you could send us the credit application in advance, just with your scanned and emailed I.D., we can get started on the paperwork in advance. When we start the paperwork, I can have an answer for you before you even come into the building. It would speed up the process immensely. You can apply right on our website at CarHub.ca and we can have you approved before you even come in.
CarHub: I know that CarHub does things a little bit differently from other dealerships. Can you tell me some of the ways that CarHub’s process is different?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: Yes, the biggest difference from us is that we’re not looking to charge higher rates just to make more money. We want you motoring, our goal is to get you in the vehicle that’s right for you. Every time we get an approval and someone gets into a new vehicle, it’s exciting for us.
The biggest thing that sets us apart though is probably speed. Our speed of approval is above industry standard and we can give you an answer in-store, as you’re in the process of choosing your new vehicle so that you get the peace of mind of knowing that you’re approved at the most competitive rate possible.
We’re also open and transparent. We don’t withhold information. There are a lot of shady practices out there but we tell you exactly what has been approved, what your rate is and what is required of you. Being upfront with our customers is very important and that’s one thing that we do very well.
CarHub: Do people need to come into the store to go through the process of financing?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: No, you don’t need to come into the store at all, you could do everything over the phone and email. We ask for a quick phone or Zoom interview first. If you email us all of the appropriate credit information, we can have the approval done for you and have you sign documentation through email and Docusign.
CarHub: I know in your career you’ve probably seen a few credit horror stories. Does anything stand out as one worth relaying to people in the CarHub community?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: The worst is when people come to pick up their vehicle and their credit score has changed before they are able to pick up the vehicle. So, they come in, get approved, decide to shop around that’s fine but when you go with another dealer there’s no telling what banks they’ll push the application through to. So if that dealer puts in the wrong information and you have given us conflicting information, the bank could pull your approval. Then you come in to pick up your vehicle and it’s a disaster. We obviously try to avoid that as much as we can.
CarHub: On the flip slide, are there any financing successes that may allay a few fears?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: Yes! So many. The one that really gets me excited is when someone is starting off a new business and we’re able to help them out. For instance, we have a customer who started a landscaping business. He came from a poor family and he worked really hard on establishing his credit so we were able to obtain financing at a very competitive rate on a RAM 2500, which is a more commercial vehicle and he used that for his landscaping business and now he’s bought over ten vehicles from us for his business. That’s exciting for us. He’s growing his business and building something and we’re there to help along the way.
CarHub: I know that potential buyers are often interested in a ‘soft pull’ credit preapproval. Can you tell me what a soft pull looks like at CarHub?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: We don’t necessarily have to do soft pulls or pull your credit ahead of time. Our mini-interview ahead of time, or if you’re at the dealership, we can determine your credit by asking you some questions. Due to our experience - I’ve been at this for over 20 years - we ask you some very important questions pertaining to your credit application and we’ll generally know from that where to send your application. Soft pulls are great but they’re not actually going to help you a lot of the time.
CarHub: Good to know! Is there anything else that you’d like to say to anyone who is coming into CarHub Automotive group looking for a financing option?
Abdul Rahman Sheikh: Know that we have many years of experience, we are upfront with our customers and we’re here to get you the best approval possible. If you could just have your documentation ready to go, we can have a quick answer for you about your financing. Our communication is amazing. One thing that I can guarantee you is that we give you a fast approval and our turnaround time is incredibly quick. We can have you in your vehicle in less than 24 hours.