The Top 10 Cities for Auto Refinance Savings

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Spending too much on your car loan? These cities offered the best auto refinance savings last year.

2020 was a tough year. The COVID-19 pandemic flipped life upside down and dealt a major blow to the economy, leading to historically low interest rates. To maximize savings during a difficult time, many people refinanced their auto loans to drastically cut their monthly payments.

For instance, according to the RateGenius State of Auto Refinance Report, 16% more Americans applied to refinance their auto loans in 2020 than in 2019. On top of that, 38 out of 50 states experienced more refinance loan approvals. And the average credit score of a refinance applicant actually dropped a few points to 657.

The numbers show that refinancing activity was high last year — but what cities experienced the best savings? RateGenius analyzed last year’s lending data and compiled a top 10 list of cities with the highest refinance loan savings.

Before we run through the list, let’s quickly walk through what refinancing is and who qualifies.

2021 Auto Refinance Rates See Today's Rates

What Is Auto Loan Refinancing?

Refinancing your car loan is pretty straightforward. If you have an outstanding car loan, you can apply for a new loan with better terms. Your refinance loan pays off and replaces your existing loan.

Why refinance? The typical reason is to secure a lower interest rate. Your credit score could have improved since you bought your car — or maybe market rates dropped. Whatever the case may be, the ultimate goal is easing your financial burden and saving you money.

Who Qualifies for Auto Loan Refinancing?

Getting approved for an auto refinance loan isn’t as complicated as you might think. Lenders review several factors that you can evaluate before applying to see if you qualify, including:

  1. Your credit score and history (you don’t need a perfect credit score to get approved)
  2. Your vehicle (particularly your loan-to-value ratio)
  3. Your current loan
  4. Your income (and debt-to-income ratio)

But, to many people’s surprise, your refinance savings aren’t solely determined by your financial profile. Your rate is also influenced by competition between car dealers and sellers, competition between consumer lenders, and your state’s (and even city’s) economic environment and health.

Now that we’re on the same page, let’s take a look at the best cities for auto loan refinance savings. You can also skip ahead to review our table summarizing our data right here.

Your refinance savings aren’t solely determined by your financial profile. Your rate is also influenced by competition between car dealers and sellers, competition between consumer lenders, and your state’s (and even city’s) economic environment and health.
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10. Hollywood, Florida

Hollywood FL is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 337

  • Average auto refinance savings: $96.14 (monthly), $1,153.73 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 39
  • Average borrower age: 726
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Toyota Corolla
  • Fun fact: The east coast Hollywood tied for the highest credit score (among approved and funded loans).

9. Cincinnati, Ohio

Cincinnati is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $96.51 (monthly), $1,158.10 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 713
  • Average borrower age: 41
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Nissan Altima
  • Fun fact: Cincinnatians had the highest original interest rate (12.5%) before refinancing their auto loans.

8. Sacramento, California

Sacramento is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 337

  • Average auto refinance savings: $98.36 (monthly), $1,180.33 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 706
  • Average borrower age: 39
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Honda Accord
  • Fun fact: Sacramento borrowers averaged the largest rate reduction: 6.9%.

7. Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $99.01 (monthly), $1,188.17 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 719
  • Average borrower age: 42
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Nissan Altima
  • Fun fact: On average, Las Vegas had the oldest borrowers relative to the other top cities.

6. Dallas, Texas

Dallas is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $99.37 (monthly), $1,192.41 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 717
  • Average borrower age: 39
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Toyota Camry

5. Arlington, Texas

Arlington is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $100.90 (monthly), $1,210.82 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 720
  • Average borrower age: 41
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Ford F150

4. San Jose, California

San Jose CA is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 337

  • Average auto refinance savings: $107.64 (monthly), $1,291.69 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 726
  • Average borrower age: 36
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Honda Civic
  • Fun fact: San Jose tied for the highest average credit score with Hollywood, Florida.

3. El Paso, Texas

El Paso is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $117.92 (monthly), $1,415.07 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 710
  • Average borrower age: 33
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Dodge Ram 1500
  • Fun fact: El Paso had the lowest average borrower age for funded loans.

2. Midland, Texas

Midland is one of the best cities for auto refinance savings 2020 - 600 x 338

  • Average auto refinance savings: $134.19 (monthly), $1,610.30 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 721
  • Average borrower age: 38
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Dodge Ram 1500
  • Fun fact: Midland had the second-highest auto loan application percentage increase: 37.2%.

1. Odessa, Texas

Odessa is the best city for auto refinance savings 2020

  • Average auto refinance savings: $146.61 (monthly), $1,759.37 (annual)
  • Average credit score: 703
  • Average borrower age: 36
  • Most refinanced vehicle: Dodge Ram 1500 (yep, another truck)
  • Fun fact: An oil town in West Texas takes the cake with the highest savings from refinancing — even though approved applicants had the lowest average credit score and only the third-highest rate reduction.
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Table Summary: Top 10 Cities for Auto Refinance Savings

The table below lists additional information about each city, including the average rates before and after refinancing as well as the average auto loan balance.

Questions about our research? Reach us at pr@rategenius.com.

You’re Not Stuck on the Side of the Road

While these cities offer drivers the most auto refinance savings, you’re not out of luck if you live elsewhere. Across all cities, approved refinance applicants cut their interest rate from 10.5% to 5% on average. That translates to average annual savings of $989.72 — no matter where you live.

Read more: State of Auto Refinance report methodology

Ready to refinance your car loan? Find a Better Loan Now

About The Author


Carter Kilmann

Carter Kilmann is a personal finance writer and editor for hire, covering topics like credit cards, mortgages, budgeting, banking, and investing. He's written for The Points Guy, Investing.com, Thrive Global, Day to Day Finance, Money Mini Blog, and more.


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