When buying a car, whether new or used, it is extremely important to know exactly what you want. Too often we find ourselves buying something we don’t need because we didn’t take the time to look through all the options available to us, or just because the dealer had cheap car prices. The same applies to buying a car. Knowing what you want, and arming yourself with as much information as possible will make us more confident in our decision and ultimately in our purchases.
These tips in our article will make sure you are getting the best deal possible when buying a car.
1) Do your research
Try to learn as much as you can about the car you want to purchase. Look at things like the invoice price as this comes in handy when negotiating the price. For a used car, you can research recent resale prices of the same vehicle from other sources such as USreviews of car sale companies. Also be sure to research the market value of your car should you want to trade it in.
2) Research available financing options
It is no secret that dealerships charge higher rates for financing your vehicle. Approach your bank first, and get a quote from them in writing. This is particularly useful to show to the seller to negotiate a better price and a lower interest rate on vehicle financing. You can also search online for good loan options with almost instant approval rates.
3) Shop around
Don’t buy the first car you see. Take your time in exploring your options, such as an out-of-town dealer. Often you will find that prices may vary due to the location of a dealership. Know what you should be paying for a new or used car by looking at the cost online versus what a dealer is charging for the same vehicle.
4) Use the internet
Buying a car online has so many benefits. Not only is it convenient, but it also means avoiding salespeople who might pressure you into buying a specific vehicle or add-on that you don’t really want or need. The overall final price will be lower as there will be no commission costs to cover. Most dealerships post their cars online on various car sale sites.
5) Buy a car you can afford
Try not to overspend on a car that you know you cannot afford. While we all want that flashy sports car, our budget might be more suited to a more fuel efficient, easier to maintain hatchback.
6) Look at both new and used cars
A good thing to remember is that a new car depreciates in value the minute you drive it off the showroom floor. Often a used car that has been well maintained will still have a good resale value if you take care of it.
7) Buy based on purchase price
Try not to focus on the monthly payments, no matter how enticing it may sound. Always negotiate on the full price, and make sure you know what that full price is to avoid any hidden extra costs such as taxes, delivery fees and the dealer handling costs. Avoid impulse buying – go in with a plan and stick to it. Do as much research as you can so that you can make the best decision possible.
8) Always test drive the vehicle
You need to be comfortable in the car you are buying. Listen for things like engine sounds when you idle the car, make sure the controls are easy to use and that the brakes and accelerator are not too sensitive.
9) Visit a mechanic
Having a mechanic inspect the car you are interested in buying can help you identify any wear and tear on the vehicle that could possibly cause future problems. A mechanic report can also help you negotiate a lower purchase price if you take the issues into account.