Buying your first car is a very exciting thing, but it can also be stressful and overwhelming. Aside from a home, it’s probably one of the most expensive things you will ever purchase. Whether you are in the market for a new or used car, there are lots of helpful tips to remember so that you don’t get taken advantage of and you get the best deal possible.
Set A Budget
Cars can get expensive, and fast. Make sure you set your budget before you even go out looking. In most cases, you’ll need to put down a down payment, and the higher this payment, the lower your monthly car payments will be. Don’t buy a car you can’t afford. Not being able to pay your payments can result not only in you losing your car but can also ruin your credit.
Do Your Research
You probably have some idea about what type of car you want to buy, but it’s best to know for sure the exact make, model, and even year before you go into the dealership. Car salesmen make commissions off of sales, so they often try to talk you into bells and whistles you don’t need.
There are some cars that look great but start to have problems much earlier than they should. If you do a ton of research before buying, you should be able to nail down exactly which car you want for your specific needs, and how much it should cost.
Especially when buying used, negotiating is sometimes an option. Know the value of the car you’re looking at, and if you do try to negotiate for a lower price than what it’s listed at, try to be fair about it. The worst that can happen is they say no, but it’s at least worth a try.
Take A Test Drive
Never buy a car without test driving it first! You need to be certain not only that it drives properly, but also that it feels comfortable to you. If you’re tall, you need to make sure there’s enough room for your legs.
If you’re short, you need to make sure you can reach the pedals. It’s also important to check out how much space is in the trunk and things like that. Take your time with this. And if a dealership will not allow you to test drive a car, that should be a big red flag.
Overall, buying a car can and should be a fun, positive, and rewarding experience. Once you’ve done your homework and decided on a budget, you’re ready to get out there and start looking. Good luck and drive safely!
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