There’s nothing more exciting than getting ready to choose a new car, but it can also be one of the most stressful experiences out there. You want to get a car that is going to work for you, but how do you find that? Everyone has different tastes, and the commercials on TV are all more confusing. Forget about all of that, we have the perfect formula to help you decide which car is going to serve you the best.
Everyone has different needs in a vehicle. You have to decide what you need for your car to work for you. If you have a family, space is going to be the most important. However, if you have a far commute, you’ll want to find a car that gets really good gas mileage. Different driving skills like whether or not you plan to off road in your car is also important. Here are some questions that can help you figure out your needs:
- How many seats do you need?
- Do you do highway or city driving?
- Is gas mileage important to you?
- Do you need four-wheel drive?
- What’re your safety concerns?
- Do you need a large trunk space?
- Do you use children’s car seats?
- Do you need to tow anything?
- What’s your parking situation like?
Perhaps one of the most important things to consider is your budget. You may have found the perfect car for you but it is $10,000 over your budget. Obviously, this car isn’t going to work out for you like you thought. To save yourself wasted time by searching for cars above your price range, set a strict budget. Figure out what you can spend a month on a car loan and how much you are planning to put as a down payment. You shouldn’t be spending more than 20% of your monthly salary on a car, so consider that when calculating your budget and what you can afford.
Lease or Buy
While many people choose to buy, there are more and more people who are turning to leases. If you don’t have a lot of money to put down, a lease might be a good option for you. They can have lower monthly payments than a car you purchase, and you don’t need a big down payment. However, you’ll be on the search for a car again once your lease ends. While buying a car is more expensive upfront, it is a much better deal in the long run. You can drive it until you can afford something better, and you get to sell it to make some money back.
Brand and Model
There are many times when we come into car shopping with a certain brand or model in mind. While it is good to know what you want, having tunnel vision can limit the cars you can view and find. This is ultimately bad because there are many comparable cars that could suit you better in the long run. Looking for similarly priced cars that are comparable to the brand and model you like it a better way to buy a car. You get a bigger view of what is available, and you might just end up liking the new car you find!
If you are buying brand new off of the lot, you may not have an issue with what is available. However, if you are buying used, this can create a big problem. Buying a car outside of your city or state complicates things a lot, and most people don’t want to buy a car and have it shipped without seeing it in person first. Because of this, you are limited to what is available nearby. There are some areas that are more popular with certain brand or styles, so you’ll have to see what is being sold nearest to you.
There is nothing more important than when you test drive a car. Think of it like your first date with the car. You want to take things slow and steady. If you immediately fall in love with it then you’ll probably overlook some flaws that are there underneath the surface. You should lift up the hood of the car, listen to the engine, and see how the car handles while in freeway speeds. Lots of people take the car for a spin around the block, but that’s not enough time to figure out what could be wrong with it. You could also take the car to a third party mechanic and see what they think about it. The shop is going to be able to tell you if there is anything concerning about it. If everything seems to check out mechanically, you like the car, and it fits the answers to the questions above, then you just found yourself the best new car for you.
Buying a car is never something to take lightly or rush into. It can take a few weeks to find the car that you love. One thing is for sure, you should never settle with a purchase that big. Make sure the new car is going to fit your lifestyle and help you rather than hinder you. If you follow the above steps, you’re sure to find a car that is going to be the right fit for your day to day life.