So I refinanced my post bk car today with Nfcu, went from 17.9% down to 8.49%. That was a no brainer for the long haul. Am I going to take a big score hit for one loan closing and a new one opening? I also think long term the refi will help because the old loan was classed as a finance company, but the new will be as an auto loan, or does that not matter for scoring? I only had the old loan for six months.
You shouldn't take much of a hit at all. Recently I did a similar refi (2 actually), no hit whatsoever. Installment loans have less of an impact on one's scores versus credit cards. Where one can run into problems is if you have more than 4 installment loans, for whatever reason.