Buying a car doesn’t have to be the trial that you think it is going to be.
With a little research and careful planning, you can find the car you want at a price that you can afford.
Plus, by having a definite plan in place you will be less swayed by sneaky salesmen looking for an “easy” sale.
Resources to know more about cars
Choosing the car that you want is half the battle! There are so many makes and models to choose from that the decision could be a bit tough. You will want to create a list of desired characteristics you want your car to have. Then decide how the car will be utilized in your household.
Is it for commuting to and from work? Will it be the family car transporting kids and other family members? Talk with friends and family about their recent car purchases. Are they happy with them Are there any pitfalls to be aware of?
A few other resources to research about different cars are the Internet and your local library. The Internet is a treasure trove of information. You can visit each car manufacturer’s web sites or visit sites that offer consumer reviews of the latest cars.
Your library will have the latest issues of car and consumer review magazines too. Be sure to pinpoint several makes and models that you would be happy with.
Selecting a car
Next on your quest for a new car is deciding what kind of car payment would best fit within your budget. In order to do that, you will need to determine what the sticker prices are for the cars you are interested in as well as what the dealer invoice is.
The sticker price is often inflated so that dealerships can reap huge profits. By determining what the dealer pays, you will have some negotiating room later.
Decide on how you plan to finance your car. Will you get a loan through your own bank or use the dealership’s finance company? Keep in mind that on some occasions, the dealership’s finance company can offer you a lower rate than your bank. However, go ahead and work with your bank to get a reasonable interest rate and have that option in place, just in case.
Ok – now you know how much you can afford and a general idea of the kind of car you want. Now it is time to visit a few dealerships and test drive! Be sure to visit more than one dealership.
This is said for several reasons. First, each dealership will offer you different types of options for your car purchase so you want to be able to pick which offer sounds the best.
Plus you can even counteroffer mentioning that another dealership if presenting you a better deal, kind of working the situation to the best advantage for you.
Also be sure to look through your newspapers every week because car dealerships will often post their best sales there.
Negotiating the price is probably the trickiest part of the whole new car transaction. There are a lot of questions to ask! First of all, ask about the options for your car.
See if you can’t get some thrown in for free. Second, what about trading in your old car? Is that something you want to do and if so, you will want to maximize the trade-in value.
By researching ahead of time with Kelly Blue Book, you can have a general idea of what you could get for your old car.
Once you and the dealer have negotiated a price all that is left is signing the papers. Check and make sure that the paperwork reflects everything that you negotiated with the dealer.
Sometimes there are surprises like extra fees. And one final thought before you drive off the car lot with your new vehicle inspect it for dings, dents, scratches and any other defects.
Because once you drive it off the lot, they are no longer held liable. You want to take possession of the car that you agreed upon.