Buying your first car can be exciting and scary in equal measures. After all, you probably worked hard, saving up all your hard-earned money to buy your first set of wheels. So, it’s only natural that you’ll be a little nervous about making the right decision.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you approach the process of buying your first car in a responsible way.
Step 1: Be Sensiblewith Your Choice
Sure, cruising down the road in a convertible will definitely be fun in the summer, but what about the winter months? When picking a car, be very clear on all the practical must-have aspects. For instance, if your student who regularly has to lug around project material and other stuff in your car, you will need a vehicle with more storage space. Similarly, if you’ll often be driving within city limits, look for a car that will give you good value for money as far as fuel costs are concerned.
Having your priorities right will ensure that you don’t end up having buyer’s remorse. In short, avoid getting sucked into temptation and make a practical choice instead. Two of the most important questions to ask yourself when buying a car are:
- What is the down payment? The higher your down payment, the lower your monthly payments will be. So, aim to put in a sizeable chunk as a down payment.
- What is the monthly payment? Write down your monthly income and deduct all monthly debts and other expenses from it. The amount you’re left with is how much you can afford to pay every month for your car.
Don’t forget to take into account other associated costs of owning a vehicle, such as taxes, registration, insurance, fuel and maintenance costs. It’s also a good idea to consider the future. So, keep in mind that you will be selling your car sometime down the line. And when that time comes, how easy will it be to find a buyer for your car? Although, it’s not too much of a concern if you think about it. Even if your car is in bad shape after a few years of use, you can sell your scrap car for cash to a car wrecker. So, that’s always an option.
Step 2: Get Your Financing Sorted Out
It’s always a smart idea to get your financing preapproved by a lender before you approach a dealership. Talk to different lenders to find which one offers the best rates. Going into the dealership with your financing sorted out will give you the upper hand when it comes to negotiating the sale price.
If you’re credit history is lacking, that can pose another problem when it comes to financing. Lenders typically rely on your credit history to determine whether or not you’ll be able to repay the loan as stipulated. To build confidence and gain lenders’ trust, it is a good idea to build your credit history six months before you start hunting for a car. That way, you’ll have a good credit history to show to the lenders, and they can conclude that you’re a responsible individual who pays your bills on time and does not default on payments.
Step 3: Don’t Skip Out on The Test Drive
Always test drive the car before signing on the dotted line. Have a checklist handy and make sure you look for each item on the checklist when you take the car for a spin. Make sure you drive for at least ten to fifteen minutes to get a good feel of the car. Check the headlights, wiper and other features to make sure they’re all working properly.
Step 4: Have the Car Inspected by A Mechanic
If you’re buying a used car, then this step is crucial. No matter how good the car looks and how smooth it feels when you drive it, there could be some hidden problems or issues that you just won’t be able to spot. So, have a trusted car mechanic take a look at the vehicle. A mechanic will be able to quickly identify any potential problems that could end up being expensive for you.
Step 5: Negotiate the Sale Price
Car salesmen tend to be charming and know just how to manipulate you. So, be smart and always negotiate the sale price – and don’t lose your head. Just because a car’s monthly payments are affordable, doesn’t automatically mean that you can afford that vehicle. Take your time to make a decision and don’t get pulled in by their tactics. A common tactic that car salesmen employ is to instill a sense of urgency in the deal. They’ll say things like “This car’s hot property. If you don’t buy it now, someone else definitely will.” But resist the urge to jump into the deal without thinking it through. Even if the car does get sold, it’s not the end of the world. There are plenty of good cars out there and you’re bound to find a great deal if you do your research and make an informed decision.Buying your first car can be a nerve wrecking process. But going into it with all the necessary information at hand and being aware of the local car market will help you navigate better and buy a first car that you can be proud of – even if it’s an old one! You can always get Cash for old cars Brisbane by selling it to a Car Removal company when it’s time to let go of it.