NADA Chairman Outlines Steps to Help Consumers Understand Vehicle Financing



LAS VEGAS (November 10, 2005) - Jack Kain, chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), credited recent industry initiatives for building consumer awareness of the automobile finance process, but said more progress is needed.

In his keynote address to F&I Magazine's National Conference & Expo in Las Vegas, Kain called on the industry to continue to push for:

  • Widespread certification of F&I employees;
  • Greater transparency; and
  • Improved public understanding of auto financing.

"Transparency is the key," said Kain.  "We need to correct misinformation and misperceptions when we see them," he added.

Kain cited the formation of a new auto finance coalition to advance consumer education - Americans Well-informed about Automotive Retailing Economics (AWARE) - as one of the industry's most important steps toward that goal.

"NADA is firmly committed to the AWARE effort," said Kain. "We want to reach out to credit customers who don't necessarily rely on traditional sources of information, including young people, single parents and members of the military," he added.

The AWARE coalition, which includes NADA, the American Financial Services Association (AFSA), a variety of auto finance companies and large retailers, launched a national campaign and consumer website last month.

Kain also urged dealerships to continue to step up F&I training for their employees, noting that NADA produced a study guide, CD-Rom and video, "F&I: Absolute Integrity … 100 Percent of the Time," for that purpose.

He recommended that finance employees become certified through the Association of Finance and Insurance Professionals.
In earlier steps by the industry, NADA and AFSA produced a consumer guide, "Understanding Vehicle Financing," provided to dealership customers. The guide was reviewed by the Federal Trade Commission.

In addition, on NADA's recommendation, many dealerships are now taking the voluntary step of informing their customers that the interest rate for a vehicle may be negotiable and that the dealership may retain a portion of the finance fee.

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