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7 Steps To Finding The Right Car For You

7 Steps To Finding The Right Car For You

Buying a car can be as simple as having enough money to afford a car you really like, but that is rarely the case. Budget is a major factor, but the cost of ownership, reliability, value depreciation, and, of course, your needs are just as important.

To help you make the right decision, we’ve created this 6-step guide that covers the factors that matter with any car purchase.


1. Create A Budget

Knowing the exact amount of money you can comfortably part with on monthly basis matters when you consider the average payment plan of 60 months. You shouldn’t delegate more than 10-15% of your net income towards a new car, so you can quickly calculate how much you’re able to spend.

Besides the financing plan, you need to consider how much of a downpayment you can make. The bigger the downpayment, the smaller amount you’ll need to finance and, therefore, your monthly fee will be smaller.

2. Calculate The Ownership Cost

There’s more to owning a car than just paying for the financing plan. The initial warranty period protects you against manufacturing defects that would appear quickly, but it’s normal for components to wear out after a certain mileage.

The cost of gas, oil change, tires, new battery, and most importantly insurance will determine how much more you’ll have to spend on your car on an annual basis. As a general rule, the bigger the vehicle, the more expensive it is to maintain.

3. Determine Your Needs

With the budget figured out, you can now create a list of requirements. First you should decide which body style (SUV, Car or Truck) of vehicle meets your needs. Once you have decided what body style works, make a list of features you would like your new vehicle to be equipped with. Examples of some features available include a moonroof, heated seats, Apple Car Play or a third row.

4. Find Suitable Options

Now, that you have a budget and have determine your needs, you can begin the shopping phase of the journey. You can shop online for a vehicle that meets your requirements, or you can call a dealership and let them do the work for you.

5. Test Drive

Before signing all the papers, you should get a feel for what the car is like to drive and to “live” in daily. We suggestion bring items like car seats or dog crates if you need to ensure the cargo space or seating will work for your needs.

6. Negotiate The Price

Even when you’re buying a vehicle, there may be some room for bargaining. Paying in cash is gives you more power over financing and it can help you leverage a better deal in terms of extra equipment.

7. Sign on the Dotted Line

The last step towards buying your new car is sorting out all the paperwork. This used to be a tedious and complicated job, but now dealerships are willing to help you get everything in order. Getting pre-approved for a car loan before you even go to the dealership can help you speed up the process significantly.

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