Have you ever bought the wrong car? Did you feel like the salesperson was taking you by the nose and seemed unable to change direction? Buying a car can be difficult but also rewarding. When you find the right vehicle that meets your needs and gives you some of what you want, you’ve basically struck gold. Grab your proverbial pickaxe and go mining with these ten tips to help you through the car-buying process to find the perfect car.
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Your needs are not your wants. This can be difficult to understand, but you should list what you need the vehicle to include, not desired features. Some of the items to consider when assessing your needs are:
How much can you afford to pay each month? Will your car insurance go up? What are the maintenance costs? Will you pay cash for the car or finance it? As a general rule, your car insurance should not be more than 15% of your take-home pay.
If you have identified the type of vehicle you are required to drive, you will find several options available. Even if you have some brand loyalty, now is the time to put it aside and consider multiple vehicles in the same class. the Edmunds Car Comparison tool can help you learn more about various vehicles.0
The cost of ownership includes depreciation and the expected resale price. If you lease your vehicle, this is not something to consider, but if you buy, you should research the expected resale price of the vehicle you wish to purchase.
Part of the car buying process is finding the vehicle you want to drive. If you’re looking for a rare classic, you may have to cross state lines to find what you want. On the other hand, when you want to drive a fairly common vehicle, it should be easy to find in your area.
Try to narrow down your list of vehicles to three models. Once you do this, schedule a test drive of all three on different dates. An appointment ensures that the car is waiting for you when you arrive for your test drive. If not, cancel the appointment and take your business elsewhere.
Some dealers try to control the test drive by telling you where to go. Be upfront with the dealer and let them know you want to do a full vehicle test before you commit to buying a car. Some locations offer overnight test drives.
Use all features, drive in traffic, drive on highway, pass speed bumps and train tracks, and park vehicle in tight parking lots. You are evaluating if this vehicle suits you or not; the test drive is your chance to try it out before you buy it.
Don’t commit to buying a car immediately after the test drive. Give yourself at least overnight to make the decision.
After you’ve driven at least three vehicles, compare them and give each one some pros and cons. You’ve probably already started a list. Find a way to choose the right car without letting your emotions enter the equation. This is one of the most important aspects of car shopping when you want to find the perfect vehicle.
Now, it’s time to end the car-buying experience by heading to the dealership to purchase the vehicle you want to drive every day. You can drive home happy knowing that you made your decision to buy a car in a practical way.
Take a look at the new 2023 Honda Pilot Trailsport below or watch this video below with more tips on buying a car.
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