We all know that a car can be a very large investment for some and sometimes a very scary one, as they may cost a lot of money. Another daunting factor is not knowing what you want in a car. Do you know how much you should be paying for what you want? And how much can you actually pay?
How to choose the right car for you
Do you really need to spend money on a smart radio? Do you need that car that goes from 0-60 in 2.3 seconds, if you will just drive around 30mph zones? Or do you just want one that is practical to drive on country back roads? These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself before investing in a car.
You need to ask yourself what is desirable and what is a need. Needs must come first if you are buying on a budget. If you choose a more feasible make, like a Ford, you may get more special features that you wouldn’t get if you splashed out on a Porsche.
It’s important to decide what you need and want before contacting a dealer, because you don’t want to be pressured into paying more than you originally intended to for a car you don’t need.
The best time to buy
You may not always be able to plan when you buy your next car. An accident might happen, your car might be written off and then you are forced to buy a new one then, instead of when you may have planned, so it’s always a good idea to be prepared.
All car dealers have targets, so take advantage of that. These targets are normally quarterly, so they happen during March, June, September, and December. During these months salesmen will be trying hard to close deals to meet such targets, so they are more likely to offer you a better deal. Negotiating will be more favourable during these periods, so get negotiating.
However, this is not always the case. Some private dealers do not work on targets and will not settle for anything less than what they ask for, so make sure you stick to your guns – and your budget.
Do not settle for the first car that you find. You may find a better price if you shop around for a bit longer. You can also encourage dealers to compete against each other by getting multiple quotes and telling them about better deals you have been offered to try and get them to drop their price. Don’t be afraid to haggle, you will benefit from it!
It is obviously very important to test drive the car you could potentially buy. There are a few things that are vital to check before agreeing on a price, as work may be needed on the car, and it may have hidden costs that you didn’t know about.
Pay close attention to:
• Doors, boots, bonnets
• Listen to the engine
• The interior
• The paintwork
Also, you should look out for mileage. Sometimes people may lower the mileage on the car to sell it for a higher price and make it seem like a better deal.
A way that you can check if this has occurred is by looking at the signs of ‘wear and tear’ of the car: is it too worn for only 20,000 miles?
If you are buying your car privately and not through a dealership, you should check a few things out. First, we’d advise you to run an online check to see if a car has any outstanding finance on it, and/or has been stolen. That way you can avoid accidentally getting involved in something you don’t want to be involved with.
Also, if the person selling the car wants to meet you anywhere but their house may mean that the car is stolen. It could also mean that they don’t want to be located if anything goes wrong with the vehicle after you’ve bought it from them.
These are our tips to help you find your dream car. If you also need help financing your choice of vehicle, then don’t hesitate to contact Employee Loans, and an experienced advisor will help you through your financing needs.