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Media post: Tools and tips to help you buy the right car at the right price

Most people want to keep the cost of owning and running a car as cheap as possible. This is the case whether they want to drive a sports car or a used car. Because purchasing the vehicle is the biggest element of the overall cost it makes sense to keep that as low as you can.

Understand what your car financing options are

If it has been a while since you last bought a car under finance, it makes sense to familiarize yourself with the subject. Refreshing your memory and making sure that your understanding is as up-to-date as possible is the key to being able to identify the best product for you.

There are several ways to finance a car, including:

– Hire Purchase (HP)

– Personal Contract Purchase (PCP)

– Bad credit financing

– Dealership financing

– Leasing

– Bank or credit union loans

– Secured finance packages

– Co-sign financing deals

– Grant schemes – for example, Motability in the UK

Check which of the above are available in your country and read up about each of them. Make notes if you need to. The aim is for you to understand how each one works, and what the pros and cons of each option are. Also find out what the criteria are, for example, whether you need a good credit limit to apply for a certain form of financing or if there is an age limit.

Armed with this information you will be able to narrow down which is the most likely to work for you. It will also make it easier for you to understand any deal that you are offered.

Work out roughly how much you will need to borrow

Working out how much you can afford to pay for a car in advance is a good idea. You don´t want to waste time looking at cars that end up being outside of your current price range.

There are two components to doing this. First, work out how big of a deposit you can pull together. Then, calculate how much you can afford to pay out monthly for your car payment. When you do this remember to keep enough in your budget to also cover insuring, taxing, running, and maintaining your vehicle. There is no point in having a car sitting on the drive that you cannot afford to use.

Car finance calculators

Armed with this information you can use car finance calculators to work out what type of car you could potentially buy. Using calculators is much better than simply going from company to company and getting quotes. You do not need to fill in any personal information, which saves time and using these calculators has no impact on your credit score.

Check your credit score and use credit builder apps to improve it

Generally speaking, the better your credit score is, the more you can borrow and the lower the fees and interest rate will be. So, it makes sense to go online and find out from your country´s credit agencies what your current rating is. If it is low, consider delaying the purchase of your car for a year or so. This will give you the chance to build up a far better rating, which will save you from paying hundreds extra for your vehicle.

There are some excellent credit-building apps out there that make it super easy to improve your credit rating. Because ours is an international audience we cannot recommend a specific one. It needs to be an app that works for the way the financing systems operate in your country. Use online reviews to help you to identify the best ones.

Use apps to help you find cars at a bargain price

Once you know how much money you have available, you can begin your search for a new car in earnest. That could mean going to a dealer you know and trust and asking them to notify you when something you like comes in.

Or you could search for yourself. Should you decide to take this approach, it is worth downloading a few apps to help you. If you have them available in your country, use an app that will notify you automatically when the type of vehicle you are interested in buying is added to their database.

Following the above advice will take time, but it will save you money. As well as greatly improve your chances of being able to afford the type of vehicle you really want to drive.

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