US Equity Advantage (USEA), a leading provider of biweekly and custom consumer loan acceleration services to the automotive industry, announced today that Vaden Automotive Group reports that their customers average $3,000 improved equity position when using USEA’s rapid loan payoff solution AutoPayPlus™. And, Vaden’s entire AutoPayPlus™ customer base will be in a better equity position of $13.5 million over the next two and a half years.
Vaden was founded in 1968 as a single Chevrolet dealership on an old dairy farm in Savannah, Georgia. Today, the Vaden family operates 10 dealerships throughout Brunswick and Savannah, Georgia as well as Beaufort, South Carolina. Vaden began using AutoPayPlus™ approximately two years ago with the goal of improving PVR, but also with a forward-reaching goal to help their customers improve their equity and their financial viability to purchase vehicles from them in the future.
According to Michael Barrett, finance director with the Vaden Automotive Group the program’s true benefit is that “AutoPayPlus™ places our customers in an average $3,000 better equity position.” He adds, “We are already enrolling in excess of 150 customers per month, producing an average of $3,000 additional equity per contract. Multiply that by 12 months and that figure is $5.4 million. Extrapolate out for two and a half years and it equals $13.5 million in improved equity for our customers!”
Vaden’s customer retention has improved in response to its strategy to help customers build equity faster for an earlier trade-in opportunity. The auto group has also augmented its per vehicle revenue (PVR) by 37.5 percent; with a product sales increase from 0.8 to 1.1 per vehicle.
“One of the biggest problems with car buyers today is they lack an adequate down payment. AutoPayPlus™ helps alleviate the problem because the payment strategy enables the customer to build a better equity position. With AutoPayPlus™, not only will the customer reduce the payoff term of the loan, but also the amount of interest paid, and build equity in their vehicle faster,” Barrett explained. “With more equity earlier in the life of the loan, they will be in a better position to trade-in. Additionally, we enable the buyer to afford a maintenance plan, save a substantial amount in interest and have a built-in down payment for their next vehicle with no out of pocket costs, and for little, if any, increase in car payment. It’s an easy sell — an absolute no brainer.”
According to Barrett, Vaden Automotive Group is well known for its above average F&I performance and the group’s PVR is on target to put an additional $1.1 million on the books this year.
AutoPayPlus™ is a valuable payment service offered to dealers at no-cost. Dealers access biweekly auto loan calculators, scheduling tools and enrollment forms through a web service or through menu integration (all menus powered by MenuVantage have AutoPayPlus™ as a core feature.) AutoPayPlus™ allows Vaden customers to make loan payments by having their checking or savings account automatically debited a half payment amount every two weeks. Instead of making 12 monthly payments, the customer will make 26 half payments, applying extra payments to principal and thereby reducing the term of the loan and interest paid. Customers can later customize their equity building plan by enrolling an unlimited number of loans for their families.
The flexibility of AutoPayPlus™ enables the F&I Manager to satisfy the needs of each sales situation. They may offer it as an option for the customer to automate their payments and benefit with early loan payoff; as a way to reduce the monthly payment for the customer; or as a way to increase aftermarket product sales by keeping the payment and term from increasing with the increased cost of products. The advantages to the customer are term reduction; accelerated equity; reduction in vehicle wear and tear and mileage as a result of earlier trade-in potential; convenient automated drafting for easy payment; and the ability to benefit from significant interest saved and total debt reduction.
Vaden Automotive Group has long been known for its quality of customer care and support of the local community. In 1992, the late Dan Vaden was chosen as one of the top eight new car dealers in the United States, winning the prestigious Time Magazine Quality Dealer Award. In 2006, Vaden won the Better Business Bureau’s Diane Wahrman Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics. And, in 2008, Mr. Vaden received the Savannah business community’s highest honor when he was inducted into the Savannah Business Hall of Fame in recognition of his leadership and support of many community projects throughout his career.
Founded in 2005, US Equity Advantage (USEA) stands as the industry leader in biweekly and custom loan payment services, from home and automotive to RV, boat and student loans. USEA helps its members reach their financial goals faster through flexible payment plans to accelerate their loan payoff, ultimately saving money in costly interest, staying within their budget and building valuable equity. For more information please visit: www.usequityadvantage.com.