5 Tips when Deciding over the Best Car to Buy
Here's how to make your car-shopping experience hassle-free.
Have you ever thought that buying a car is like choosing a life partner? They are quite similar practices, choosing a perfect match, the one that can last you longest, if not a lifetime.
That same care and discernment that you leverage in your romantic decisions is as necessary when deciding over the best car to acquire. A car purchase will simply not work if you are being impulsive. It is always ideal to take some time doing some research and meticulous planning.
Here are five tips that can serve as a guide when finding and choosing the right car to buy.
1. Assess your requirements.
You may have a dream car, but you must always consider the possibility that it is not the right car for you. When choosing a vehicle to buy, it is always advisable to prioritize your lifestyle and needs over any other factor. Functionality should come first.
Before starting the search, consider the following questions:
- Where would you most likely drive the car—highways, surface streets, or off-road?
- Is fuel economy important for you?
- What are the safety features you are looking for?
- How big is your garage or parking space?
“When choosing a vehicle to buy, it is always advisable to prioritize your lifestyle and needs.”
2. Set a budget.
If you are getting an auto loan to finance the purchase, then it’s definitely the time to pay more attention to your budget. How much can you comfortably afford for a monthly car payment? Personal finance experts recommend taking a car loan that will amount to less than 20 percent of your monthly income.
It is critical to consider the interest rate that comes with a car loan. If you have a high credit score, you can easily obtain a competitive rate. Otherwise, you have to make do with high-interest rates. In order to mitigate the interest that you’ll end up paying, consider paying a larger down payment equivalent to at least 20 percent of the car’s tag price.
3. Consider other costs of ownership.
Beware, some vehicles might be cheaper to buy but will eventually incur higher costs on depreciation, fuel, maintenance, or insurance. There are specific car brands and models that depreciate faster, require higher maintenance, and cost much more to insure.
“There are specific car brands and models that depreciate faster, require higher maintenance, and cost much more to insure.”
4. Check out other cars in the same class.
Consider other vehicles in the same class or comparable to your dream car. You could be surprised to find another car that matches your preferences and needs perfectly. When finding cars on an online portal; try searching for cars that are of the similar vehicle type as your dream car. From there, you could consider other specifications, features, and pricing.
Upon finding an ideal car, immediately contact a dealer to confirm the availability of the vehicle. If you get a car loan pre-approval or pre-qualification, it would be better to prepare a printout or certificate so the transaction will run more smoothly.
5. Don’t forget to schedule a test drive.
Never ever get a car deal done without first testing the merchandise. Set an appointment with a car dealer for a test drive. You can’t just show up in a dealership and demand a test drive right away.
During the test drive, try to drive the vehicle in the manner you would drive it every day. Drive it along a highway, over bumps, along steep hills, or in a typical stop-and-go city traffic. Turn off the music when driving so you can easily hear the sound of its engine or any other sounds the vehicle is making. Assess the sound system upon your return to the dealership. Don’t hesitate to question the sales agent assigned to you.
“Never ever get a car deal done without doing a test drive.”
Lastly, have a clear mind when you make the decision to seal the deal. Once the transaction is complete, there’s no going back. Hopefully, you’ll have made the right choice and found your match.