Whether you’re a recent college grad, starting your first real job or someone who hasn’t ever purchased a car, the first-time car buying process can be overwhelming and confusing. Being a first-time car buyer isn’t easy and there’s a lot that goes into it.
Check out a few tips to help you navigate these new waters with ease.
1. Create a Realistic Budget
Creating a realistic budget is the first step in the car buying process. This should be based on how much you can afford to pay for your car each month.
You can also check into a first time auto loan to pay cash for the car, but you want to do your research well before choosing which company to go with. Calculate your cost of living, utilities, rent, groceries, and entertainment, then figure out how much you’d have left over for your car payment, this is the figure you should go with.
2. Consider Other Car Expenses
When working out that budget, you not only need to figure out your monthly car payment, you also need to determine the other car expenses you’ll incur as well.
Figure out how much you’ll be spending on your car insurance, gas for the week, and any car maintenance or repair issues that could crop up at any time.
3. Determine the Type of Car You Need
It’s important to note here that “needs” and “wants” are two very different things when it comes to buying a car for the first time. Just because you want a convertible, doesn’t mean you need one. You need to take into consideration what the car is needed for, the impact of car accidents on your insurance, (because you never know what can happen), and even the upkeep and maintenance on the car as well.
Once you determine which car you need, then it’s time to get down to the business of finding it.
4. Do Your Research
Online research is crucial when you’re looking for your first car. There’s an amazing amount of research available at your fingertips, day or night. Make the decision of whether you want to buy new or used according to the research you’ve done and the budget you’ve created.
While you’re researching the best car, make sure to look into the different dealers in your area as well. You want to be proactive when trying to find a car. If you see someone with the type of vehicle you like, don’t be shy about asking them its pros and cons, and if they would make the same decision again.
5. Choose a Dealership
Choosing a dealership isn’t as easy as just walking into a showroom and choosing the car you want. Instead, you should do your research here as well. Then make sure to go to the dealer’s website and read any reviews.
Don’t stop there, look on social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and others to see what people are saying about the dealership you’re considering.
6. Browse and Buy
Once you’ve chosen a couple of dealerships head over to browse their car selections. Make sure that you stick to your budget and find the right car for you. Don’t let pushy salespeople talk you into extras that you don’t need and can’t afford, and soon you’ll be driving off the lot in a car you love.
These are just a few tips to follow as a first-time buyer. This is a big step in your life, a huge milestone, and you never want to regret your choice. After all, no one ever forgets their very first car, now do they?