Buy your first car Buy your first car

Getting a driving license is already stressful enough, but we know the value of having one, so we go through the process and ensure we pass. For many people, buying a car is just as stressful because there is a lot to think about and the potential to make a mistake and end up with the wrong car. While there are some complexities to deal with, this handy guide will help you navigate this process and ensure these complexities do not hinder your first car purchase.

1. Set a Budget

Before you start thinking about the type of car you would like to buy, or its make and model for that matter, it is important to determine how much you have and are willing to spend on a car. The good news is that there are a lot of financing options available, which can enable you to buy a better car than you otherwise would with the cash you have on hand.

The most important thing to do before you start considering cash or financing is the price range you can afford. Setting a realistic budget means the goal will be achieved easily, and the financing will not be too hard on you if you decide to go that route.

Buying cash is the best move since you get to save on interest and many dealerships will give you a discount since they want to have the money be part of their cash flow as soon as possible. The second-best option is financing with a large down payment. The more you have to put down, the less your monthly payments will be. A large down payment also means some dealerships will consider reducing the repayment period if you choose to increase your monthly payments a little if you can afford it.

One last thing to remember – if you decide to go with financing, always read all pages of all documents you sign thoroughly. You do not want to be caught out by a single clause later when the deal is already closed.

Also read: Car Trends You Should Consider This Year

2. Do Your Homework

Once you determine how much you would like to spend, it is time to start doing your research. Spending enough time researching improves the chances of finding the exact car you are looking for at the budget you have. Before you start looking at listings, ask yourself how you will use the car and the mileage you will cover in a week or month. Also think about whether other people will be driving the car, the features or technologies you need, and whether you will be transporting luggage or people regularly.

Once you answer these questions, you will know whether you need an SUV, saloon, minivan, coupe or another type of car, the performance, and features you are looking for as well as the car size that best fits your needs. After these questions, it is time to look at some cars.

Car listings are an incredibly important source of information for almost any car you are looking to buy, you just have to find the right listing. While you can find listings in newspapers and other guides, it is best to stick to listings that are posted and maintained by a reputable car dealership Essex. This is because car dealerships know their reputation rides on the verifiability of the information they post about the cars on their listings, and so they do their best to ensure this information is accurate.

The best car dealerships provide not only the price of the different makes and models they have but also additional information on safety, fuel economy, emissions, technology and additional features, interiors and so much more. These listings also make it easier to save these listings for later reference. Also, a car dealership that cares about the customer experience will provide financing information so you have all the information you need on that front right away.

3. New or Used Car?

You also have to decide if you want a new or used car. This will largely be determined by your budget, research, and needs. It used to be that used cars were the better and cheaper option, but the global shortage of some car parts has caused a shortage of new cars.

With fewer new cars being produced, the demand for used cars has increased, thus driving their prices up. Many used car models are going for close to what new cars would, so it is better to just consider new cars. Do note that the prices of specific new cars have also shot up, so it is a balancing act when choosing between used and new cars.

New and old cars do have their pros and cons. For new cars, maintenance costs are low, they have better fuel economy, they can be customized easily and come with the latest technological features.

Old cars often attract lower insurance rates and there is a huge variety of cars to pick from. Also, you can get a customized used car with lots of features for cheap and, barring some specific models, used cars are typically cheaper than their new counterparts.

When buying a used car, it is important to go with reputable dealers who have been in it for a long time. All their cars should already be inspected, but the car dealer should be open to letting you bring your mechanic to inspect the car. Additionally, ensure the car dealership is registered with a consumer protection agency since a car is a serious investment.

Also read: Best Comments for a New Car

4. Always Do a Test Drive

Once you’ve settled on a budget, found a car you like and a dealership that has the car in stock, take it for a test drive. A test drive lets you know how it feels to drive the car and can point out any potential issues that you might not have caught earlier. Many dealerships know how to hide issues when the car is standing still, but these issues can come up when the car is on the road.

Buying a car is an exciting milestone, but it is something you should be careful with. You can end up with an expensive financing option, the wrong car or a car that has issues. Always think about what you need, do your research, and only deal with reputable dealerships who would gladly help you out if something went wrong with the car.

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