Probably the first thing that everyone should bear in mind is that when you are ready to buy a car, do not rush the process, whatever you do. True enough you may be well excited to get yourself behind that steering wheel and to call it yours finally, but what happens when it starts falling apart and stalling in the middle of the road repeatedly? You will begin to wish you had spent more time and got yourself together when you had the chance. To avoid regrets, and instead be proactive. Here are some of the main things to get you started, to help you make a more informed decision at the end of the day.
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Scout Out Prices
As you will soon find out, the same car is available for different prices at different places, and knowing what these prices exactly are, can be incredibly beneficial for your negotiating powers. For instance, some tend to look for the ‘invoice price’, which the price is paid by the manufacturer to the dealer. Needless to say, the invoice price can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending of course on the type of car itself. Your aim is to show the dealer you know your stuff and that you mean business, and are by no means, a dummy.
Whilst this naturally means how much money you can afford to spare for the car, it also means costs in terms of maintenance and other needs. So think insurance, spare parts, Car Oils, repairs and so on. The more high-end and luxury the car is, the more expensive all of these things are. Your budget will also include any loans you plan on taking out, so do not forget to include the monthly loan repayments into your expenses as well, as this will be an added cost on top of everything. When calculating your budget, it is not just about how much you can pay, it is about how much you can afford to keep paying.
You should steer clear of whizzing out of the first dealership you visit with your brand new car, for several reasons which we think are quite obvious, and so need not be explained in detail here. Go for a couple of test-drives though, with many different dealerships. Let them walk you through all the characteristics, as well as which cars they recommend for you and why. Test-driving is especially important for used cars, as you can never tell what it might be like until you have taken it out for a spin.
Just like you would assess a house based on your requirements before you buy or rent it, you should do the same thing when it comes to a car. There are different types of cars as well, after all, so making a decision will be much easier this way. Do you need it for yourself? For your family? Mainly to transport the kids? Whatever the purpose, identifying it will be useful also for your dealer, who will be looking to hook you up with the most suitable car out there.