Shopping for a car can be fun and exciting if you take some time to do research and prepare yourself. In Part Two of our article, we look into a few items to research before you go much further.
Does it have all the features you need?
Make a mental list of all the features you would like your ideal car to have and make sure the car you are considering has them. Do you want leather seats, automatic start, keyless entry? Make sure you have a checklist that you can run through when you are researching on-line.
Car’s accident history (if it’s a used)
If you are buying a used car, check into the vehicle’s history to see if it’s been in an accident, or more than one accident. While insurance will fix a damaged car and make it look new, the fact that it has an accident in its history will affect its value when it comes time to sell it or trade it in.
The new cost of your insurance
Especially if you are driving an old car, your insurance is bound to go up when you buy another car, especially if you are getting an expensive new one. Call your insurance company and ask for a quote just so you know. Oh, and this might be a good time to shop around for different insurance agencies too. Doing this could save you hundreds of dollars.
Consider leasing over financing
If you are thinking about getting a new car but don’t intend on keeping the vehicle for a long time or if you would like to drive a new car every few years, the sales department at Rochester Hills Chrysler Jeep suggests doing some research into leasing a vehicle. Leasing a vehicle isn’t for everyone and sometimes can require a higher credit score or more money down, but it can provide lower monthly payments and typically covers all repairs.
Look Into GAP Insurance
Different from an extended warranty or auto insurance, gap insurance will cover any negative equity you might owe if your car is totaled out. Most new car dealerships will offer some sort of GAP Insurance that you can add in addition to your warranties. GAP insurance may be more money a month but in the event that something did happen, you wouldn’t be out of thousands of dollars paying negative equity on your car.
How You Plan On Using the Car?
The car that you may have in mind may not be the most logical car for you to have. Spend some time thinking about how you are going to use your car. If you have to drive an hour and a half one way to commute or if you carpool or take children to school every morning then a car with poor gas mileage may be a poor choice. On the other hand if you if you rarely drive your car or don’t have far to go to commute, then you can look into a vehicle that may have more features or isn’t as great on gas mileage.
How much is the down payment
Most of the time, whether you are buying a new or used car, a down payment will be necessary. A good rule of thumb is to have around 10-20% of the car’s cost ready for a down payment and sometimes more if you want your monthly payments to be low.
Fill out an on-line loan application or talk to your local banker about your options before going to the dealership. Sometimes you will find a better rate and you can ask your dealer if they can match it.