2. Let the calculator do the work for you
There is some math involved in figuring out the monthly payment, but the good news is we have calculators to do the heavy lifting. Let’s say you have your eye on a mid-size SUV. Select the make and model of your choice, or enter the cost of the SUV in the auto loan calculator. It will ask for some other details like down payment, expected value of trade-in and interest rate. After that, it will calculate compound interest, estimate taxes and title fees, and display the monthly payment.
If you have monthly payments in mind but you’re not sure what it will buy you, then the affordability calculator is perfect for you. You start with one monthly payment, and after a few questions, the calculator will give you an estimated price range, along with a number of vehicles that fit that criteria.
If you’re using the Edmunds app, there’s an option to estimate payments when you’re browsing any vehicle that interests you.