Buying a new car can be a daunting experience, especially if it is your first time doing so. Fortunately, thanks to the internet, the consumer has access to more information than ever in the buying process. This can enable every buyer to get the best deal and have the smoothest purchasing experience possible. Here are 8 handy tips for when you’re in the market for a new car.
Think about What You Need
Before you determine what specific model you would like to buy, as well as your allotted budget, you should consider the practicalities of what you will actually use your new car for. This will help you narrow down what kind of vehicle you should look at.
For example, if you intend to regularly make long-distance journeys, you should take into account comfort and fuel economy as important factors. Equally, if you have limited parking space in your garage, you will obviously need to eliminate anything too large.
Consider Different Payment Options
The expansion of the automobile market in the last few decades has resulted in there being a dizzying number of different ways to pay for a new car. While these can be difficult to wrap your head around at first, it’s a good idea to research the different options before you visit a dealership, so that you choose the plan which is best for you. Some of the most common are cash payment, credit card payment, personal loans, and leasing. Don’t forget that you shouldn’t part with any cash until you have seen a car history report.
Each plan has different advantages and disadvantages. Cash payment, because it is lower risk for the seller, often comes with a discounted total price. Comparatively, leasing can be appealing since you will only need to pay a small amount monthly. However, it also means that you will not truly own the car. You can also incur additional charges for certain breaches of the lease contract and may be liable to pay the entire amount of the car if it is damaged.
The rise of e-commerce means that you are no longer only limited to local dealerships and the specific cars they have on offer. To get the best price possible, it is therefore worth comparing prices among dealerships in your area, national dealerships, and online car retailers. This is not only because they vary substantially on price, but certain dealerships offer specific benefits for buying with them. The Royston GA car dealership, for example, includes additional features to strengthen and enhance vehicles purchased with them.
It is also worth comparing the different makes of cars in your price range, since they can also vary in terms of their affordability, reliability, and in what is included as standard. There are thousands of car review websites out there today, so you can easily find the best car model for your needs and budget.
Haggling is notoriously one of the most unpleasant experiences of the car-buying process. However, if you want the best deal possible, it is unfortunately necessary to be prepared to negotiate. The advertised prices of dealership cars usually account for the fact that buyers intend to haggle with the salesperson, so it is always worth trying to lower the price. This is one notable advantage of buying from a dealer rather than an online marketplace.
To help you negotiate, it is worth researching the “invoice price” of the car you’re interested in. This refers to the price the dealer purchased the car from the manufacturer for. Knowing this will help you determine how much you should actually be spending on the car. If you don’t feel too confident about negotiating yourself, you can always also bring along a friend or relative to ask the tough questions for you.
Factor in Depreciation
One of the most frustrating things about buying new is how quickly they lose value after purchase. In fact, it is estimated that cars drop in price by roughly 40%, as soon as they are bought. However, this can also vary substantially, depending on the type of car you purchase.
In view of this, it is therefore worth accounting for depreciation when choosing which model of car you want to buy. Taking good care of your car will also help it retain as much of its value as possible. Alternately, you can lease a car, which means that, while you will not own it outright, you will be able to swap it for an upgrade every few years.
Take Operational Costs into Account
As with depreciation, it is crucial that, when drawing up a budget for your new car, you also factor in the day-to-day costs of running your car. Car insurance, tax, and fuel are just some of the expenses you might want to research before pulling the trigger on any purchase. A really cheap car, for example, might seem appealing at first, but can also be highly fuel-inefficient and also break down regularly, incurring significant repair costs.
Be Prudent With Extras
Typically, showroom salespeople will also want to sell you all the additional extras that can possibly be included in your car. However, not only are many of these unnecessary, such as heated car seats, they are often severely overpriced. Consider what would actually be helpful – anti-lock braking, for example, is particularly popular, since it substantially increases the safety of your vehicle. In addition, if you find that there is a feature you would like to add after purchasing your car, you can always pay for the upgrade later.
Test Before You Buy
Finally, you should always book a test drive with any car you plan to buy, before deciding to buy it. This will give you some hands-on experience of whether things like the ride quality, visibility, and comfort are fit for purpose. These are all features that are difficult to determine without driving the car yourself. In addition, it pays to inspect the car’s interior prior to buying, to ensure everything is as advertised and that there are no damages.