Things To Consider When Buying A Car On A Budget
Buying a car is often the second largest investment most people will make after buying a house. Therefore, there are various aspects to keep in mind when on the hunt. This is especially true if you are on a budget when you purchase a car. Despite this, you can follow a few tips that will enable you to afford the vehicle of your dreams and do so without dipping too deeply into your rainy day fund.
Does It Need To Be New? (Or Is Leasing An Option?)
This is the first question you should ask yourself before going out and getting “convinced” by a salesperson. It would be helpful to consider whether you want to get a lower-specced model that is brand new or a higher-spec for cheaper. Although it sounds like a no-brainer, after all, you can get nearly new models at a fraction of the price these days, it isn’t quite as clear-cut as it seems. For example, new cars will often feature multi-year or mile warranties which is great peace of mind. And then there’s the option of going for a lease. The used vs. leasing argument has been going on for as long as cars have been mass-market commodities, and for a good reason. For instance, you can often find great deals on brand-new vehicles rather than buy them outright when you lease them. One disadvantage is that you will never truly own the car, but it significantly reduces costs.
Think About How You Will Use The Car
This is a major step in determining which car you will buy. It should be evident that if you have a large family to transport, going for a used Ford Fiesta will probably be a waste of money. Conversely, if you opt for a large car with terrible MPG, you will equally have a money pit on your hands. Consider carefully and choose accordingly.
Do Your Research
This is slightly different from understanding your requirements. The research you should engage in here will focus on shopping around and finding the best deals. Apart from possibly finding the right car for less, you will give yourself leverage when you negotiate with dealerships. For example, you might prefer buying from a dealership because of their extra services, but you might not know the car’s actual price. If you had done your research beforehand, you would be in a far better position to negotiate, which leads nicely to the next tip.
Don’t Be Afraid To Negotiate.
Western countries have an inherent fear of negotiation for the best price. While this is often because people don’t usually care about getting an extra 5 cents off a candy bar, you can save significantly by merely haggling with the seller when buying a car. This includes negotiating the price of any vehicle you might be trading in.
Consider If You Can Afford The Upkeep
Although cars aren’t quite like boats in that you have to fork out 10% of the vehicle’s value each year, they have high costs that vary depending on the model you choose. An example is if you find a fantastic deal on a nearly new BMW. A deal like that might look impressive until you change a tire or an oil filter. These vehicles are often costly to maintain, and the parts can be prohibitively expensive. Therefore you could end up not being able to use your fantastic new car for lack of spare parts.
Check Your Credit Score
When purchasing a new or used car and using finance, you should check your credit score before setting foot into a dealership. It doesn’t matter if it is good or bad; the critical point is knowing what it is. This could save you from getting manipulated into using credit lines for those with poor scores. Certain finance houses credit those with bad scores, but the monthly payments are far higher than usual. If you go into a dealership not knowing your score, they will attempt to lock you into one of these bad credit loans you will regret. Instead, you could ask around friends or family for a loan on much better terms.
You must carefully evaluate all options if shopping for a car within a specific budget. Making sure you do your homework before negotiating gives you a competitive advantage. You can also consider leasing if you don’t have the monthly budget to own a vehicle outright. However, the most important thing is to think about what you need it for and how you will use it. This will ultimately be the most significant deciding factor.
Transporting Your Car If Buying Out Of State
When trying to find the perfect car on a budget, sometimes it might help shopping out of state. Don’t let the location of the car deter you from purchasing it. Many reputable car transport service companies can help you ship your car home. They will also provide a detailed exterior inspection report; this way, you will know the exact condition of the car when it was picked up.