Top tips when buying a new car

Want a new car, but afraid you don’t know what you’re looking for? Try these handy tips for finding your next motor. Remember, never rush into a purchase, and don’t feel pressurised to make a decision right there and then.

  1. Know what you want.  Do your homework and make a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves for your new car.  Do you value comfort the most?  Do you need the extra boot space to fit in the pram?  Or perhaps fuel consumption is your biggest concern?  Whatever it is, write them all down so you can tick them off as you compare different vehicles to find the right one for you.
  2. Utilise the internet.  You can research about potential vehicles from the comfort of your own home in order to narrow down your choices.  Not only will you be able to find detailed specifications of most cars online, you can also look out for honest driver reviews to help make up your mind.
  3. Going for a test drive.  Whether you are buying a new or second hand vehicle, it is vital that you take it out for a test drive.  If you are getting a pre-loved vehicle, you should take with you someone who is knowledgeable about cars.  They might be able to help identify any unusual sounds or movements, which could impact on how much you are willing to pay for it.
  4. Pay the right price.  When you purchase something as big as a car, there is no shame in asking for a good price to make sure you are not paying more than you need to.  How do you do this?  Well, you need to do a bit of homework first.  Research car websites to see if you can find the invoice price of your chosen vehicle – that is, the price dealerships pay the manufacturer for the car.  Then compare prices across different dealerships to get a sense of the sort of mark-up to expect.  After this, you should have a pretty good idea of what a good price is.
  5. Get better car finance.  Even if you succeed in getting your chosen vehicle down to a good price, you will still need to match it with a good car finance deal to keep overall costs low.  Although many car dealers offer finance packages, some are definitely better than others.  Apart from monthly repayment amounts, make sure you also check out the length of the car loan, the cost of the overall package, whether there are any set up fees and what happens if you would like to sell your car before the loan expires.  You should also take a look at price comparison websites  to get a sense of the deals that are on the market.
  6. Get paid for your current vehicle.  Whether you drive an old rusty car or a fully functional modern vehicle, you should try to make some money from getting rid of your car.  If your car is in perfect working order, you should consider selling it privately or to other car companies.  Of course, many car dealers allow trade-ins but just be aware that you probably won’t get a good price for it.