Finding and buying a new car can be a confusing process. Don’t start off by walking the dealers lot. There are numerous things that you need to think about prior to making this giant decision. Taking time to prepare for this big investment will make the car buying process less painful and more fun.
In the end this can provide you with a vehicle that will make you happy for years to come. All to often the happiness is gone in a few days. Before you set foot on a dealership’s lot you should have some vital information in hand. Here are seven ways to improve a car buying experience.
New Car Researching Tips
1. Define Your Needs on paper. Few take the time to do this but it can kick the brain into overdrive just holding a pen or pencil. Before buying a new car decide what type of vehicle you want combined with what your automotive needs are. Example: do you really need off-road capabilities or just want them? If you really need this then 4-wheel drive vehicles or all-wheel drive vehicles should be compared with like vehicles so it’s apples to apples. Skip this option if you can truly live without it!
Keep in mind that these options are costly especially (AWD) All Wheel Drive. They cost upfront at purchase and down the road for maintenance and repair. Do you need cargo space? What about the fuel consumption needs as fuel prices increase over time? Define the needs now and you will be able to enjoy the new car more with less buyer’s remorse in the future.
Buy an automobile with vehicle options, styles and benefits that are the most in demand for the family. Let me just run through an example. If you have 4 children and each one of them is involved in some activity or sport a sedan is likely not going to offer you the space you require. In this instance you will need a minivan or an SUV or some kind of crossover vehicle.
This segment of the automobile market has grown by leaps and bounds and offers more choices then ever before. I went with a Cadillac SRX (pictured right) that is not much more then the competition.
2) Honest budgeting: Nothing is more important to a car buying experience than knowing the budget. This will mean making a detailed budget and determining how much money is left for car payments. If you trade a car that is not paid off you must account for this additional amount. By ensuring that you know your budget needs you’ll be able to get the best deal.
To me the most important part of buying a new car is not overspending. This can prevent future hate of the new auto. See price ranges and ratings on top selections at Edmunds.com.
3) Your Down Payment: The amount of money that you put down on your new car purchase is important. This reduces the amount of money financed, thus reducing your monthly payments.
Of course you know the more you put down on the car the less you will pay each month. The bigger benefit is shorting the length of the loan and reducing the amount of interest paid over the term. You should also find out if the amount on which you are taxed is determined before or after the down payment is made this also affects payments and will be different from state to state.
4) The Interest Rate: Nothing is more important to new car financing than the interest rate and term length. The rate will dictate how much your monthly payments will be for the duration of the car loan and the shorter the loan the better.
Don’t forget that most dealerships markup the amount of interest for which you are approved in order to make a profit on the financing as well as the sale of the vehicle. The dealer wants to make money at every turn. So never accept loan offers through a dealership without negotiating it down first. Then compare it to outside financing.
5) When buying a new car watch out for hidden Fees and Charges. All dealerships have hidden fees and charges to at least some extent. Whether their term is storage fees, detailing fees, paint and pinstripe charges or something else, it all amounts to the same thing, another way to get more money from you.
By knowing how much you should be paying in extra charges and fees to the dealership, as well as questioning each individual charge that is itemized or applied on the purchase contract, you will be able to get the best deal possible and smile when you see your vehicle in the driveway instead of feeling regret. Some new car franchises have a name for customers that except all these extra charges without fitting back. They are called “fish”. Once the hook is set the fish winds up in the boat.
General Tips for Car Buying
6) Warranty: The vehicle warranty should play a key role in your purchase decision. The new car warranty offered is not open to negotiation, since it is provided through the manufacturer.
Extended warranties are open to negotiation, but not manufacturer warranties. Give this subject some serious consideration because few things have quite as much bearing on the enjoyment of your vehicle going forward.
Making the right choice will give you a car with long-lasting protection. The wrong choice will leave you in the lurch when you most need it. Consider shopping for a car warranty off site. Use the power of free market competition but don’t go for the lowest price without considering deductibles and coverage.
7) Just remember when buying a new car you can always look around some more before signing a deal you will regret. Too many people rush into this large purchase. Then your neighbor comes home with a new car that is better than yours and paid two thousand less.
Find more information about buying a new car from this ex dealership mechanic that has seen his share of unhappy car buyers. This next link takes you from Buying a new car to many more tips.
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