If you’re looking for a new set of wheels focus on dependable over style. Buying your dream car is likely different from purchasing a car you need to get from point A to point B. List your car requirements on a piece of paper. Reliability, good fuel mileage and reasonable monthly payments are likely high on your list.
Use these tips for buying a dependable car.
Be open to different colors and options. Having a mild preference here and there is okay but being obsessed with the details closes you off to good, dependable automobiles. You’ll also be able to haggle for a price more in your favor if you’re willing to let go on some aspects of the car. For example, if you’re willing to buy a different colored ride with slightly altered options you can negotiate a better price when it comes time to talk about the purchase. Don’t get locked in to a specific type of auto. Detach from a set vision of your ideal car. Choose from a wider selection of rides and get a better price.
Work off of a make, model and year to get a feel for the car. From there be less discerning about details like options and colors.
Take the Car for a Test Ride
Before moving forward with your buy test drive the car. Spend at least 45 minutes driving in different conditions to get a feel for your potential ride. Accelerate onto the highway and cruise through stop and go traffic. Brake hard at lights. Practice parallel parking. Do whatever you’d normally do to see if you have a good match. Don’t be in a rush to get back to the dealership even if the floor sales person seems to be rushing you. This is a major investment and should be treated as such.
Don’t forget to look under the hood too; just because you’re buying a new car doesn’t mean the ride is pristine. Some folks may take a car through its paces on test drives. Other cars that haven’t moved off of the lot yet may have accrued many miles during test runs. Check for signs of damage before taking the car for a test spin. Don’t buy a car without inspecting it thoroughly.
Review Dealership Financing
Check out dealership financing and new car fees to save money on your new car purchase. Documentation fees, registry fees and sales tax can add up quickly. Ask the dealership manager to supply you with all costs relevant to the purchase. Carefully look through this worksheet before buying to avoid being blindsided. A bit of extra due diligence prepares you for your investment.
You may be able to score a far better rate at your dealership versus the pre-approved financing route. The dealership can run your credit report to assess your interest rate. If this rate beats the rate you already received go with it.
Before agreeing on a price add in the sweet benefit of having the car delivered to you. Whether it’s your home or office this is a convenient, time-saving benefit you should explore.