Buying Your First Car? Things to Know Before You Drive!

The journey between planning to buy a car and owning the one evokes a wide range of emotions in the first time buyers. On the one hand, the first time buyers get dreamy when they envision themselves driving a swanky car. On the other hand, they look confused over whether they should buy a new car or go for a used one. They have butterflies in their stomach whenever they browse through the automotive websites and see the unbelievable prices.
All these emotions make buying your first car a unique and unforgettable experience. You will definitely rejoice these emotions when you will go on a ride remembering the days which went into anxious planning.
These emotions are good as you will later realize, but there is a flip side to this journey. The first time buyers need to always keep in mind that buying a car is not all about emotions. It involves a lot of calculation and practical research. If your calculations are wrong and you mess up with your research, goof-ups are bound to happen. You may regret your decision for years to come.
Here are a few tips you can use to avoid the most common mistakes and to make the experience of buying your first car truly rejoicing –
Used Car versus New Car?
Confusion over this question is probably the most prevalent emotion in a first time buyer. Everyone wants to buy a new car, but you should ask yourself whether it is the right choice for you. The answer to this question may be tough, but it needs to be addressed properly. Several factors including your budget, your specific requirements and your expectations from a vehicle are involved when you take a decision.
It is better to understand the advantages and disadvantages associated with a new car and a used one.
While a new car will come with the latest features introduced every now and then by the automobile industry and will really make you feel good when you drive it around, it will be quite expensive compared to a used car.
In case, you buy a new car, you will have a wide range of options to choose from. On the other hand, your choices may be limited when you buy a used car. A warranty and several other securities are offered when you buy a new car, but the used ones usually come with no such assurances.
Car is a depreciating item, so as soon as you drive it out of a showroom, its value will go down tremendously. Within two or three years, you better not hope to get more than half the price if you decide to sell it.
The used cars will be cheaper and a viable option if you have budget constraints. The flip side is you will always have a nagging feeling that you are driving a car which was earlier owned by somebody else.
Budget
New car or used one? This model or that one? SUV or sedan? Your budget will help you decide most of these things. If you have decided that you will go for a new car, you can further zero in on the car’s segment and the brand by determining how much you can spend. It will help you decide the right car from the segment best suited for you. If you have a brand close to your heart, you can go for it only when your budget allows this.
Determine why you need a car and how you will use it
There are several reasons behind buying a particular kind of car apart from its being a long time wish of yours. Some factors including who will use the car – only you or your family members also – should be kept in mind. If you have a large family, you will need a car which provides more passenger and luggage transportation capacity. If you are all alone, you can definitely choose something smaller, but luxurious. Mileage may be a deciding factor if you are going to use your car for long distances, that too frequently. The list of reasons could be really long. Determining the right purpose behind buying a car will help you make the right choice.
Financing
After you have determined your budget, you will realize that you have a wide range of loan options available. Car loans usually come with a fixed rate of interest which allows you to see what your payments will be each month. As with all of our car finance options, you can choose to settle your outstanding balance with the lender at any time. You should make a precise calculation about how much you can spend every month on instalment and other expenses like insurance, periodical maintenance and fuel.
Testing
The car websites have made it really easy for anyone to browse through car models, compare them and make a decision. But, it is still important to physically test a car before you purchase it. There are several ways to do it. You can consult with someone close to you who already owns the kind of car you are planning to buy. You can also avail the free test drive opportunities offered by almost all companies and car dealers. In case, you are buying a used car, you must get a mechanic to carry out a thorough inspection on it.
So, choosing the right car may initially feel like a hazardous exercise, especially if you are buying your first one, but you should enjoy the process. As mentioned earlier, you will remember the days which went into anxious planning when you go on a ride in your first car.
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