Top Car Buying Tips
Buying a car isn’t much of an investment - one needs to keep that in mind.
It’s in your best interest to do the research and compare all available options before you walk into the dealership. That said, here are some tried-and-tested evergreen tips for buying a new car.
Do Some Research
Before you visit the dealership, it is important to do your homework. There is no denying the fact that knowledge is power.
If you directly visit the dealer, chances are you’ll be more confused than you initially were.
Hence, it is in your best interest to do some research beforehand.
Thanks to the internet, there is no shortage of information. With just a few clicks, you’ll have a pool of resources in front of you.
Websites such as Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, and Consumer Reports are great places to get started.
Explore Pre-Financing Options
Don’t opt for dealership financing, if possible. You’ll only end up paying higher rates and fees. Instead, try seeking alternatives like credit unions and banks.
The best place to start searching is with a bank or a credit union where you have an existing relationship.
Try getting quotes from multiple banks and apply for pre-approvals.
While pre-approvals don’t guarantee that you’ll receive the exact rate, it is still worthwhile given you’ll have a clearer idea of the rates and terms you’ll be eligible to receive based on your credit score and other factors.
Negotiate With The Salesperson
Keep in mind that there is always scope for negotiating the price of the car. Do not fall for add-ons or unnecessary fees that dealerships quote.
When you do your research, you’ll have a better idea of the current rates and trends. This information helps you to avoid common dealership traps.
Walk into the dealership with confidence, know what you need, and negotiate hard. These efforts will help you lower the total cost of the vehicle.
Moreover, if you already have a pre-approval handy, you’ll find it much easier to negotiate better rates and terms.
Only Buy What You Can Afford
Budget your purchase and look for options that you can afford. Consider your ongoing debts, monthly expenses, and other liabilities.
You need to have a clear understanding of the monthly payments and the total price you’ll be paying for the car.
Make use of online calculators to get a clearer estimate of what you might pay monthly and over the life of the loan.
This will help you minimize the chances of going upside down on a car loan or facing payment delinquency.
Look At Purchase Price Not Monthly Payments
Most dealerships will try and lure you into accepting longer repayment terms.
At first glance, this looks great because of the low monthly payments, but once you calculate the total interest, you’ll realize that you’ll eventually end up paying more than the car is worth.
Always negotiate on the purchase cost of the car, not on the monthly payment that is being offered.
Ask about the total price of the car and any hidden costs before you accept the deal.
Don't Get The Add Ons
Car salesmen will persuade you to opt for unnecessary add-ons with a new car. In most cases, these are overpriced and serve no purpose.
Picking these frivolous options will only increase the overall cost of the car and your loan.
In case you need some add-ons, we recommend that you search for other options outside the dealer.
You can find better rates online for most of these accessories and add-ons.
Always Take It For A Test Run
Make it a rule of thumb to test-drive a car before you settle for it. There are many reasons why you should opt for a test run, comfort being the primary reason.
Consider all factors such as the handling, front and rear view mirrors, control, engine sound, braking, and other features before buying.
You can even bring a trusted car-professional alongside to get an expert opinion.
Ultimately, getting a new car can feel like a major investment - second to that of buying a home.
You should invest time and effort to do thorough research and understand each aspect of the process.
Gather the required information and compare all available options before making any final decision.
By following the tips listed above, you’ll be able to get the best value for your money and drive home without feeling like the dealership has taken advantage.