Tips for buying your first car
December 18, 2014 at 2:46 PM
It doesn’t matter whether you’ve just finished school and in your first job or you’re not the prototypical first- time car buyer. Car buying is never easy and especially so if it’s the first time. It takes proper planning and good decision making to make sure that you get the best value for your money.
The most important thing is to be patient. Do not be in a rush. Rush decisions – you might know this from experience – do not turn out well most of the time. Consider your options and make a decision based on information and nothing else.
The process can be a bit tricky and confusing but with these few tips, the process will be a bit easier.
Tips For Buying Your First Car.
1. Make a budget – I know it seems like the first tip in all buying guides is budgeting. But that’s because it’s the most important thing when buying anything. It’s important that you calculate how much you are willing to spend without affecting your usual living standards too much. This should include monthly spending as the car will require fuel, insurance and car payment if you choose to use a financing option. Keep it affordable or this might be the last major thing you ever buy.
2. Know your needs – Does the car suit your needs? You might get the urge to buy a convertible in the spur of the moment or a pick-up truck for those times you need to transport your stuff. But is it practical? Can you use the vehicle every day? Can the need you want to satisfy be satisfied with a once in a while rental? These are questions you need to ask yourself.
3. Identify your wants and prioritize them – It is not feasible to get a new car every 18 months. You will be stuck with your purchase for a while. It is thus important that the car fulfils all your most important needs even if it will stretch your budget by just a bit.
4. Research – Researching on a good car to buy has never been easier. With the internet, you can do all the research you need in the comfort of your home. Check out different dealers and what they are offering and compare prices. Read reviews from users and critics alike. Compare your options and then make a decision. But remember, whether used or new, never buy a car online without inspecting it physically: first impressions can be deceiving.
5. Take a test drive – If it’s a used car or a new car, ask the seller to let you test drive the vehicle. The longer the period you can drive it the better. You cannot begin to understand the problems in a vehicle unless you take it out for a spin. Major problems can be detected as soon as you turn on the ignition. Insist on a test drive.
6. Get the car inspected by a reputable mechanic – This only applies to used-cars. Do not, I repeat, do not rely on the sellers word. The seller may be looking to make an easy buck by selling you junk. Give the car to a good mechanic for a comprehensive check-up. This will help you adjust your budget appropriately for any repairs necessary.
7. Have fun! – Yes, have fun. It is your first car and the stress should not take away the excitement. Enjoy the variety available to choose from. Test-drive a few before making the final decision. And as I mentioned earlier; patience is key.
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