Tag Archive | "Economic Advantage Corp."

Add Value to Your Product Mix with Bi-Weekly Payment Plans


Bi-weekly payment plans have been around the automotive industry from more than a decade, but like many F&I products, they have grown and adapted through the years. Today, “bi-weekly” is something of a misnomer, since the companies who offer it often have more payment options than just that one; however the term itself has stuck, and continues to be used to classify a category that covers the ability to break payments up in a variety of ways.

The benefits to this type of plan for consumers are numerous, and include making cars more affordable since they can tailor the payments to be paid automatically as paychecks come in. Many of the plans are automated, so consumers do not have to worry about missing payments, or racking up late fees if they forget one month. They can also consider more F&I products, since this type of plan can help keep a larger total amount to a more manageable payment amount.

And that last point is one of the prime benefits for F&I managers. For many consumers, especially in today’s market, budget is a major concern. The car loan by itself can stretch them to the financial limit; trying to add additional products can be a difficult sell. By including bi-weekly payment options in the “bag of tricks,” the F&I manager can offer a product that is presented as being almost solely for the convenience of the consumer, generating good will. That can then open up an opportunity to talk about other products that can benefit them as well, and be affordable at the same time.

For agents, this is an important tool to give to the dealers and F&I managers they work with. Most, if not all, of the bi-weekly payment options are sold through agents, and while the product has been around for a while, it has not yet achieved a high penetration rate, mostly due to dealers not being exposed to it. This offers agents an opportunity and a strong selling point with which to go in to both new and established clients.

What options are out there? We talked to two of the biggest providers in the bi-weekly space, and asked them about their products, what sets them apart, and where they see bi-weekly payments going. This is a good place to start researching if you are looking to add this powerful and valuable service to your product mix.

Bi-Weekly Payments

Economic Advantage Corp.

Lynn Simmons, President
Economic Advantage Corp.

Can you give me a bit of your company history? How did you become involved in the smart payment category?
EAC has been offering the biweekly payment alternative since 1989. We began with the mortgage industry and we are the company that introduced this alternative payment method to the auto industry in the year 2000. We were also the first to offer a fully web-based version of this program. We have longevity, which brings with it maximum experience which keeps us at the forefront of our industry.

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SMART Payment Plan

Rod Tobiason, Principal
SMART Payment Plan

Can you give me a bit of your company history? How did you become involved in the smart payment category?
We have been servicing customers primarily in the car industry for over a decade. We help customers budget by matching a smaller payment to their payday in order to pay off their loan 5 to 8 months sooner, and build equity faster. We help both the customer and the dealership.

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Economic Advantage Corp.


Lynn Simmons, President

Can you give me a bit of your company history? How did you become involved in the smart payment category?

EAC has been offering the biweekly payment alternative since 1989. We began with the mortgage industry and we are the company that introduced this alternative payment method to the auto industry in the year 2000. We were also the first to offer a fully web-based version of this program. We have longevity, which brings with it maximum experience which keeps us at the forefront of our industry.

What makes your product different from others on the market? How do you differentiate it?

There are now a number of providers in this space and we all offer the same basic service…a structured loan acceleration option that reduces the customer’s debt term and helps to increase aftermarket product sales. Bi-Auto PriorityPay offers more options than any of our competitors, the most important of which is the ability for the customer to add multiple debts such as credit cards, student loans and mortgage debt.

This “upgrade” option offers a single draft from the customer’s account to cover their total debt obligation and generates significant benefits, saving the customer thousands of dollars and knocking years off their debt. The sales and enrollment process is fluid, easy and completely electronic. And EAC’s support and customer service leads the marketplace.

What is your primary sales channel? How do you market to that channel?

Our service is provided to the Dealers through industry Agencies. We work with the Agents to train and support their Dealership Finance Managers. We have various commission plans that generate significant revenue for the Agent, the Dealer and the Finance Manager. Our program can also be accessed through DMS and Menu providers.

What are the biggest advantages to this type of payment plan? What would you say the disadvantages are?

The flexibilities of this alternative payment method enable the F&I Manager to use it to satisfy the needs of each sales situation. They may simply offer it as an option that makes is easy for the customer to automate their payments and benefit with early loan payoff. They may use it to reduce the monthly payment for the customer. They may use it 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 with Bi-Auto PriorityPay — the ability to benefit from significant interest saved and total debt reduction. The only disadvantage is inadequate disclosure to the customer — which EAC works to minimize with agency support and proper training.

In your opinion, where is the greatest growth potential for the smart payment category?

Although the accelerated payment option has now been around for 13 years and there are a number of providers in the marketplace, many Dealerships have still not been introduced to this service. There is yet much room for growth. Additionally, the enhanced benefits offered by Bi-Auto PriorityPay will provide significant growth potential for many years to come.

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