Jan 04, 2020 10:31 PM EST
Thanks to the transparency of online shopping, purchasing a new car has never been easier. Yet, it's a challenge to carry out and can lead to a lot of frustration and loss of money. Most people find their car purchase their second-biggest expense.
In this guide, we hope to help you navigate the process with a little more ease.
No matter whether it's your first time buying a car or your fifth, the golden rule stays the same. The first step is always a budget.
Before even considering the type of car you want, determine how much you can spend. The less you spend on a vehicle, the more you'll have later for extras, and you won't overspend on a model because you got fixated on it.
If possible, go for a reliable sales assistant for a used car or a lease. Cars aren't an investment, and we all know that used vehicles provide better value for the price. Get to know your numbers and then find a model that corresponds to them.
If you can't afford to buy a vehicle from your savings, getting preapproved for a loan will start you on the right foot. Check out different banks and their offerings to find a deal that works best for you.
If you do go for a loan, make your term no longer than 60 months. Get all the needed documents - salary info, balances of debt, and more.
After getting preapproval, you need to be ready to buy in the next two weeks to reduce the number of hard inquiries on your credit score.
Check out your candidates and pick a few possibilities that work best. Then, you should go and see them in person before you make a decision.
Schedule a test drive, make sure you aren't getting any dealer-installed options that you don't need, and that add to the sale price, and make sure you have your seller's full attention when you test it.
That way, it will be much easier to determine whether that car is the right one for you.
Nowadays, one of your best options is to request dealer quotes by email. You could contact the dealership directly or use one of the websites that compare quotes of different establishments.
Then, to determine how much you can haggle, consider the seller's price toward the average market one.
You'll have much higher chances of success if you're a cash buyer. Besides, stay cautious and track the numbers the salesperson is naming and ensure you're discussing a price that includes all taxes and fees, too.
If you see no point in negotiating or you don't like the way the seller is approaching you, be ready to walk away. It's better than settling for a less-than-satisfactory deal.
Once you get your new car, you need to get insurance for it. Many insurance brokers are there to offer advice and best deals for your coverage. Be sure to shop around a bit before you decide on any policy, but don't hesitate too much.
Getting the right insurance coverage will save you thousands in the long run while making you more confident in your new car.
When it comes to warranties, any third-party extensions not backed by the manufacturer are a no-go. Dealers often add extras that you don't need, so you need to refuse them.
The only one you truly need is the factory warranty, which will ensure you against the cost of significant repairs.
Once you've finally managed to make the price, fees, and financing methods feel right, it's time to seal the deal. Go to the dealership or have the car delivered at home, and hit the road the very next day.
Whichever way you choose, be sure to review the contract and ensure that the numbers match.
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