Buying a new car is exciting and nerve racking in equal measure. There are many car models to choose from, each promising the best performance and boasting of top-of-range features.
Other considerations such as fuel economy, green credentials, petrol or diesel, etc. further complicate the process. If you are looking to buy a new car, here are tips that will make the process smoother.
Do Your Homework
Whether a first-time buyer or not, make a list of vehicles that you would consider purchasing and note down the reasons for your preference. The choice of the car largely depends on the purpose of the vehicle.
If you intend on restarting your catering business, you may want to research on large vehicles. Often, car owners use their vehicles for multiple purposes. Bear this in mind and select a model that will be fit for the various tasks.
The first step in securing funding is running your credit report to get a credit rating. Your credit score is a key determinant in how much financing you can obtain from your lender.
While an excellent credit score does not automatically guarantee a loan, it puts you in a higher credit tier which translates to more favorable interest levels. Talk to the relationship manager at your local bank and get a pre-approved loan based on your credit score.
You can now visit the car dealership and negotiate for a good deal on the vehicle of your choice. The goal here is to get the dealership to give you a better interest rate than what the bank gave you.
Ensure that the car is as robust as the sales brochures your salesperson handed you. Get behind the wheel and get a firsthand feel of your potential new vehicle. Check for sound quality by inspecting the door speakers for bass.
Ask questions or seek clarification about any part of the vehicle. As you can imagine, your salesperson has many other customers who need his attention so make sure to arrive early or book an appointment at a convenient time.
Find out if there are dealer installed options such as all weather floor mats. Any add-ons to the vehicle will result in an increase in the original price for that particular model.
Models That Hold Their Value
New cars tend to depreciate very quickly, which means that you will get less money should you sell it later on. Remember, a car is an investment just as your home is.
Compare the depreciation rates of different models and select a vehicle that is likely to give the most return on your investment after a couple of years. A better deal means more money to re-invest in a better model when the time comes.
Buy At The Right Time
Even after knowing the type of vehicle you want and securing financing, wait a little longer to make the purchase at the right time. Be on the look-out for discounts on car models you care for at the end of quarterly sales.
Car dealerships are more likely to offer attractive financing packages at this time as compared to during the throes of a sales quarter. You may even get your dealer to throw in a couple of freebies such as door speakers for bass.
In most cases, the choice between one vehicle and the other boils down to price and subsequent expenses. Buyers want the best possible deal, and they are willing to make a few compromises.
If your budget is tight, try making direct comparisons that will eliminate added expenses and leave you with a car that fits your budget. For instance, petrol cars are cheaper than diesel cars.
Manual cars have a lower price tag than their automatic counterparts. Smaller engine cars burn less fuel than bigger vehicles, and this translates to a better fuel economy. Ensuring a small vehicle costs less than buying insurance for a 4X4 car.
Selling Your Older Car
In the tight economy we live in, consumers want to save every penny they have and put it to good use. If you want to buy a new model and have a limited budget, you may consider parting ways with your starter car and re-investing that money.
While disposing of your older and possibly run down model, you have two options; you can sell it to your dealer or sell it independently. Many buyers will opt for the former as they can re-invest the money to buy the new car.
Whether you decide to find a buyer or your own or to sell to trade in with the dealership, ensure that you know the exact value of your car beforehand. Find a sales expert to value your vehicle and haggle relentlessly to get most of this money back.
Buying a new car is not a walk in the park but rather a decision that needs careful planning and research. Draft a checklist of the desired features but do not be rigid; a few compromises may be necessary.
Christina Powell is a blogger at WheelOnRoad.net – a blog that is focused on sharing tips and tricks about automotive.