Does buying a car bring about mixed feelings of excitement, joy, dread, fear, frustration, and even depression? You’re not alone. Like many things in life – being a mother, opening a bank account, or saving for retirement – buying a car was never in the school curriculum.
Arguably, only second to buying a house, buying a car is one of the most expensive purchases for a typical household to make. And that is why when you step onto the dealership floor you had better look like you know what you want, and how to get it!
Know Your Needs
Think of buying a car as if you are buying a practical pair of shoes. You’re not buying them on a whim, or because they’re too pretty to ignore, you’re buying them because you need them.
So, determine what you will be using the car for by asking yourself the following questions:
What will be its main purpose? Daily city driving, commuting between work and back, taxiing kids between school and activities?
What will be its secondary purpose? Driving vacations, transporting goods?
Calculate How Much You Can Afford
No matter how much you love those shiny new wheels, the last thing you want is to empty your bank account so that that car is parked in your garage. When you know what your budget is you won’t be so easily swayed in buying a car you don’t actually need. Online calculators differ but are easy and convenient to use. They typically allow you to enter figures such as the price of the car, a deposit amount, and the repayment period – and then at the click of a button they’ll calculate your monthly premium.
Do Your Homework
With so many vehicle options to choose from within a given price range, how do you even begin to make a decision? Armed with Point 1: Know Your Needs, you’re already halfway there. Now what’s left is for you to do your research.
The best place to start is within your own circle. Family, friends, and colleagues will likely give you their honest opinion, and the best thing is you’re hearing it first-hand. From their feedback, you’ll begin to form a picture in your mind of which car brands have the best reputation in terms of reputation, reliability, safety, parts availability, customer service, and more.
Choosing a model and variant is where your budget and personal needs come in. But don’t let the amount of options daunt you – in fact, this can be loads of fun! Take some time to read reviews and watch test drive videos – these will also provide the necessary ammunition when you walk into a dealership with a particular car in mind.
Bring on the Attitude
You’ll no doubt find dozens of potential cars online that you’d like to test drive. Now that you’re geared up with self-knowledge – what your needs are, how much you can afford, and a good idea of what make and model you’re leaning towards – it’s time to visit a few car dealerships.
You’re going to call up the dealers with a list of cars you would like to test drive. With each dealer, make an appointment for a specific date, and take note of the name of the salesperson. Turn up dressed for the occasion – this means comfortable in your own skin. When you arrive, smile, shake hands, look him in the eye, and say, “Hi, I’m Beyoncé, and I’m here to get a great deal.”
Be firm about your price range, this in itself will help you come across as a confident car buyer. But what will really bowl them over is when you display your knowledge of cars and the jargon that comes with it. So, make sure you brush up on these.
Most importantly, take your time. Be completely satisfied you’re buying the right car, at the right price. You will encounter a lot of hype, but remember the final decision is yours. So, own it.
Disclaimer: This information is for educational, or entertainment purposes only. It must not be construed as advice, legal, financial, or otherwise. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability, and accuracy of this information. The views expressed in this article are the views of the author and not necessarily the views of Auto Pedigree.