When it comes to buying a car, getting a brand-new one has plenty of benefits. For one, you’re going to have more peace of mind because you don’t have to worry about how the previous owner treated the vehicle. A brand-new car also has the latest parts and safety features, which increases its reliability.
Before you go to the dealership, however, you need to keep in mind a few important things. This is so that the purchase goes as smoothly as possible and that you’ll get the best value for your money. Check out the tips below if you’re getting a brand-new car for the first time:
Determine Your Budget
A new car costs a lot of money, which is why you need to think about your budget first and foremost. In particular, you need to consider a few things: the money you’re willing to spend and the money that you can actually spend. They should be around the same figure—there’s no point in gunning for a car that costs so much more than what you can afford.
Most likely, you’ve been saving for a few months (or even years) so you don’t have to start from zero. Still, it’s possible that what you’ve accumulated isn’t enough. If that’s the case, you can get a car loan from a bank. Ideally, you should have more than 30% of the car’s value as downpayment and then the car loan can cover the rest. This gives you more breathing room when it comes to monthly amortizations.
Of course, a car loan isn’t an excuse to get a luxury vehicle. Compute how much you can afford to allocate for your loan payments and then buy a car within that range so you don’t drown in debt.
Research the Best Car for Your Needs
Aside from your budget, you should also factor in your needs and lifestyle when deciding on the type of car you’re going to buy. For example, if you’re married with three kids, a sedan will have ample space for all your needs. Meanwhile, if you’re single and have no plans on settling down just yet, an SUV may be a little impractical.
You should also consider things like how frequently you will use your car and where you will drive. If you’re the outdoorsy type and planning to take your car on your adventures, you’re going to need a more powerful engine. Meanwhile, if you’re mostly going to drive in the city, say going to and from work, a compact sedan or a hatchback may be a better choice.
Be Careful with Add-Ons
Some car models give you the option to add features such as a backup camera, lane assist, collision warning system, blind spot detector, and the like. These are nice to have, sure, but are they really necessary? Again, evaluate your needs before making a decision; you should also think about alternatives. For example, while built-in GPS might be nice to have, you can compensate using your smartphone and a navigation app.
By being a little more selective about the extra features of the car, you can save a lot of money and ensure that you’ll be able to make the most of your new vehicle.
Compare Similar Models
When you’re buying a brand-new car, it’s a good idea to shop around. Even if you already have an initial decision on the make and model, it can be good to check others that are similar in style. You may find something more affordable or a model that costs the same but has more built-in features.
If you can, try to check out different car dealerships as well. Sometimes, you can find cheaper options in less “central” locations. Of course, factor in the time and effort of going to a dealer that’s farther away.
Book a Test Drive
Last but certainly not least, it’s best to experience the vehicle first-hand before you buy it. This way, you can get a good feel of your potential future car and see if it truly meets all your requirements and preferences. After all, you’re going to spend big money that you’ve saved for years; it’s only logical to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your investment.
Make sure to book a test drive well in advance, especially if the vehicle you want is popular. You can let the sales personnel know, or you can also book online if the dealer has the option on their website.
A few more important things to keep in mind would be to check the gas mileage and verify the warranty coverage. For the former, you generally want a car that lets you cover more distance per liter since this can lower your ownership cost. For the latter, knowing what is and isn’t covered by the warranty can spare you from future headaches.
Buying a new car is definitely exciting, but don’t let your emotions get the better of you. Keep these tips in mind so you can make a hassle-free purchase and fully enjoy your brand-new car.
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