Many people begin to look forward to the new year as the 2020 ends, and for some, it means it is time to start considering buying a car after using their current ones for some time. According to the available data, the average person buys 9.4 vehicles in their lifetime. With new models coming in, it could be a tough choice settling on which car to buy. But if you’re thinking of buying a car, here are some things to consider first.
Do your research
A new car costs quite a handsome amount, so it is only fair that you do your research to get as much information as you can on what you need. Unless you are super-rich and the price is not a defining factor, such information will come in handy when making a decision. One way to conduct your research is by using the internet; there is so much you can learn regarding the matter, and no matter the kind of information you seek, you are sure to find it. Studies on consumer behavior have shown that up to 80 percent of car buyers use the internet to research vehicles they would potentially buy.
Budget and financing
Before you make up your mind when buying a car, you must have a fair idea of how much you are willing to spend. Once you establish your budget, you can consider the payment options available to you, and if you have enough to pay outright, good for you. More people are opting to finance the payments on their cars to save a bit more cash upfront. If you decide to go with financing, you should get a car finance calculator to help you deal with the payment plan’s breakdown. Do not forget to factor in the sales tax on your purchase as well as the registration fee. It will help you settle on how much you can comfortably afford to pay every month.
When people talk about a car’s quality, they usually refer to its workmanship and durability over time. Cars of high-quality experience fewer problems in general and do not need frequent repairs or upgrades. With modern vehicles, manufacturers pay a lot of attention to the amount of technology that goes into them. The quality and functionalities of such tech could also play a decisive role. Technology such as forward and backward facing cameras that assist in parking can be beneficial. Others such as navigation, telematics, charger ports, and cross-traffic sensors will keep you safe while on the road. Even cup holders could be the defining factors that settle your choice between cars.
Many people would love to own a Ferrari or that muscle car with immeasurable torque. Indeed, everybody has their idea of a dream car but is it really practical when it comes to the usage and functionality they offer? You should consider how and when you plan to use your car most, as this will give you an idea of the functionality you need from the vehicle. If it is just to get you from home to work in the city, then a sedan is excellent, but if you have a farm and often get supplies or transport stuff, it is best to get a truck.
There is the age-old argument of making a bold statement. True, the type of car you use may represent who you are and your style, but that should not override the basic functionalities you need from the machine.
Improve your negotiation skills
We use negotiation in almost every aspect of our lives, and obviously when buying a car. In the long run, improving your negotiation skills is a sure way to make a good deal on the car you plan to purchase. Make sure you do thorough research and arm yourself with factual information.
Before you begin, inquire about the available rebate and cash incentives and factor them into your negotiation strategy. Now be sure to put emotions aside as you start the negotiation process and be clear and firm about what you want. As much as possible, offer a lower price than what you expect to pay for the car and adjust it to a price that you can comfortably pay off outright or with monthly financing.
Type of transmission
This is one consideration you should give ample thought to. Manual transmission seems to be out of vogue, and many now prefer an automatic transmission. Consider the benefits of each type and make your decision. Keep in mind, though, that the prices are a bit higher due to the increase in demand for an automatic transmission.
The type of fuel that powers your car is another major factor to take seriously. Most cars are either powered by petrol or diesel. Relatively, cars that are powered by petrol are considerably cheaper than those that are diesel-powered. Due to this difference, a diesel-powered vehicle’s operating costs are somewhat less expensive than a petrol-powered car, even though vehicles powered by diesel tend to cost more and need more maintenance. Let this guide you in your decision-making.
Your credit score can be used effectively as a bargaining chip at the negotiation table. It is often the reference point when it comes to such purchases and a good credit score always comes in handy. Make sure you check your credit score and have a good idea about interest rates. This can benefit you when negotiating and can potentially save you hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on your purchase.
When you finally decide on what car you want to get, it is best to compare the prices from several dealerships in order to have an idea of how much it costs. The best way to do this is to go to their websites and get information such as deal pricing and invoice. This information will put you in pole position when you negotiate a price with the dealers.
Trade-ins are a great way to save some extra cash when purchasing a new car. Therefore, research the value of your car and its trade-in value, as this will give you an idea of your trade-in’s worth. Salespeople are quick to adjust the worth of trade-in to suit them, so knowing the trade-in value of your old car will give you an advantage when negotiating. If you do not know the value of your trade-in, you could lose some money.
Quite a number of people do not take test drives when they are buying a car. No matter the reason, it is recommended that you test drive the car you are opting to buy even if you are used to its make and model. It is also advisable to inspect the car and have a good test drive to ensure it is in perfect working condition and has no hidden faults that you have to deal with later.
Take time to find out more information on the car you have decided to buy. Look out for consumer reviews and read up on what other people have to say about the vehicle. These are consumers who have had first-hand experience driving and servicing the car and better understand what to expect from it. If you decide not to check the history of the machine or reviews, you may be setting yourself up for quite a bad experience.
Additionally, it is vital to check the repair history of the particular car that you want to buy, especially if it’s a used car. This will help you know which areas have been replaced and what you are likely to replace later. If it is a brand-new car, find information on how the car ages and the cost of repairs and parts.
Getting a mechanic to perform a thorough inspection is also advised. Some dealers tend to keep some things to themselves when it comes to making deals. Therefore, ensure you have the car inspected by a trusted mechanic to confirm that it is in perfect condition. If a dealer refuses inspection, that should be a red flag, and you should progress carefully with such a deal.
Insist on your rights
Purchases are legally binding, so before you commit, make sure you know your rights and insist on them. Ask for the warranty package and return policy and take time to get acquainted with them. If necessary, get legal interpretations so that you understand exactly what you are getting. Find out if you need to supplement the warranty or if you are covered by lemon law under the terms of the purchase.
Buying a car is one of the most significant financial investments you will make; before you make a purchase, ensure that you are getting the best value for your money. With proper research and excellent negotiation skills, you can make a good deal and save some extra cash.