Assess and Prioritize Your Needs
When it comes to choosing a car, you have your needs and you have your wants. This time, however, you should prioritize what's essential - your needs, not just for today or tomorrow but in the future as well. Here are some things you need to keep in mind when assessing your needs:
- number of passengers you expect to carry
- safety features
- cargo capacity
- your available garage or parking space
- type of driving you will do: highway, off-road, etc.
- climate in your location and road conditions: Will you be driving in snow or ice?
- the distance of your commute
With your priorities set, it's time to do some research and find the car the fits your needs. You can also refer to customer reviews for added specifics on the brand/model you are researching for and, as much as possible, confirm such testimonials Although you may already have some types of car in mind, it is still good to search into some alternatives. There are countless of sites on the Internet that provide informative posts regarding almost every car there is out there. Take your time investigating each model.
Set a Reasonable Budget
There are a lot of sleek and beautiful cars in the market but these can also rip your bank off. Set a reasonable budget and make sure you stick with it. If you cannot pay all costs upfront, then ask yourself how much you can afford for a car payment each month. Consider the depreciation time, insurance, maintenance and running costs (check the car's miles per gallon value).
When budgeting, also take into consideration the overall cost of ownership. As a rule of thumb, not more than 20 percent of your monthly salary. Two cars may have the same purchasing price but one might be more costly in the long run. Taking note of these information will help you save thousands of dollars in the long run
New or Used
In most cases, the overall value of the car is decreased to almost half or more after the first three years. Further, some manufacturers will also offer warranty of five or even seven years for these! With secondhand cars, you can do away with the issues of depreciation. You will also have the freedom to choose the colors and specifications you need, and enjoy the pleasures of driving a brand new car. The good thing about buying a new car is that you can be certain that it will not experience any problem in the next few years, and that in the event something goes wrong, it is covered by warranty.
Interestingly, many dealers will offer cars that are nearly new - cars that have run only a few hundred miles, usually used by showrooms only for test drives. Several auto websites will post up great discounts for some of the best cars of today These cars usually come with big discounts. However, one of the biggest drawbacks of a new car is depreciation. In the instance that you are to go for a brand new car, then it would be wise to search for sales.
Take the Car for a Test Drive
Do not let the sales talking distract you. Do not settle down on a car just for the sake of getting done with the process. Make sure that you test the exact model you want to buy, including the exact gearbox or engine and other specific devices you need so that you can make a sound judgment of it. Further, it would be better to test drive all the cars on your list on the same day so that you can have a better comparison of each. Inform the dealers that you will be making a visit so that they can prepare the car to be tested. Focus your attention on ensuring that the car you are testing is the car you want.
You can also ask questions at the end of the drive. If you have already found the car, or list of cars, you think fits your requirements, it's time to set them up for a test drive. If you still cannot decide, then do more research and go for more test drives. Nonetheless, you might also want to know that cars of today are much better than models of the past, especially in terms of safety, gas mileage and other amenities. After the test drive, you might already have a final decision. Everything really boils down to what meets your needs and personal taste