Purchasing a new vehicle is a significant investment so it’s essential to do all you can to ensure you’re making the right choice. You can’t always trust the opinions of the people at the dealership or the individual selling you a car if you’re buying used. Following these three tips while looking for your next car will protect your time and investment!
1. Put Some Thought Into Your Test Drive
Test drives are an excellent way to familiarize yourself with a new car, especially if you’re switching to a different style. Always schedule a test drive where you can keep the car overnight. Scheduling overnight test drives prevent salespeople from pressuring you once you return to the dealership. Overnight test drives also allow you to get intimately familiar with the car.
A successful test drive involves trying the car on multiple surfaces. In addition to driving it on the highway, you should drive in residential areas and on rough, uneven roads. It’s also a good idea to test drive the car in your home area and see how it feels.
If you have a family, involving your children in the car buying process is fun for everyone and makes your decision a bit easier. Seeing how the car handles when it’s full with your family is a great way to get familiar with it.
Finally, when it comes to test driving a car, make sure the dealership allows you to drive the model you want and not the luxury version. You’ll be disappointed if you enjoy the test drive only to find out you drove the luxury version that has thousands in add-ons. Always book your test drive ahead of time so the dealer can ensure you test drive the right model.
2. Always Buy On Total Price Not Monthly Payment
Buying based on the total price may seem obvious however it’s a common mistake people make once they get in front of a salesperson. Chances are you’ll be offered an attractive monthly payment, but that usually means a longer lease period. Buying solely on the monthly payment price leaves out a lot of details that could end up harming you financially.
Before making a decision get an idea of the total price. The full price includes taxes, car preparation, delivery fees, dealership fees and other costs. If the total price is outside your budget, you may have to pass on the car. While the monthly payment you’ll be offered is usually in your price range, it will end up costing you more in the long term.
3. Get Extra Opinions On A Used Car
Buying used has many advantages, namely saving on price and not having to worry about depreciation. However, when purchasing a used vehicle, it’s crucial to put some extra time and effort into researching the car.
The first step when you see a used car you like is to do a Vehicle Identification Number lookup. VIN lookups give you a look at the car’s history and its condition. VIN lookups include information on how many accidents the car has been in, repairs that have been done and if the car has ever been reported as stolen.
Another crucial step to safely buying a used car and getting the best deal is getting it inspected by a trusted mechanic. A mechanic can give you an objective overview of the car’s condition and give their opinion on the price. An inspection from a professional mechanic ensures your used car is safe to drive and that you’re not buying a lemon.
Following these three tips will make buying your next car a breeze. Remember to do a VIN lookup to get a full sense of the car’s history if you’re buying used. Spending a little extra time on research and preparation will ensure you make the best investment possible.