Streamlining Your Next Car Purchase
We all love the experience of getting a shiny new car, but the process leading up to getting one is something many regard as a necessary evil. There’s finding the right car for a start, then you have to worry about selling or part-exchanging your old one, negotiating a good deal and arranging finance. If you’re not careful getting your dream car can become a nightmare.
So what can you do to make the car buying process easier and ensure everything goes smoothly? Well, first you need to do your homework. Spend some time working out what kind of car you want and use one of the many price guides, either in print or online, so you know what you should be paying. This puts you in a much better position to negotiate.
Looking at the Car
When you go to view the car it’s important to take your time. Examine it carefully for problems and don’t be rushed on the test drive – if you’re buying privately make sure you’re insured to drive the car. Check that all of the extras like electric windows and air conditioning are working correctly. You can find a useful check list of what to look for on a used car at TheAA.com.
If you’re buying new make sure you understand what’s included in the price. You may be able to get a better deal on a car the garage has in stock but do check the specification, is it an unpopular specification or colour that will be hard to sell on later for example?
Selling Your Old Car
Once you’ve found the car you want to buy you have the problem of getting rid of your old one. If you’re buying from a dealer you may opt to trade it in. Remember that the important thing here is not how much they offer you for your old car but the price you need to pay to change.
If you decide to sell your car yourself then you need to spend some time ensuring that it’s well prepared. Clean it inside and out and ensure you have all the paperwork to hand. To avoid the hassle of advertising the car yourself you might want to look at one of the companies who buys cars removing the hassle from the process.
When it comes to paying for your new car you have a number of options. You might be lucky enough to have the money sat in the bank and after all it won’t be earning much interest at the moment. For most of us though some sort of loan will be involved.
Here you need to compare costs carefully. Whether you get a finance package from the dealer or borrow from your bank, look at the monthly payments and at how long you’re going to be paying them for. An increasingly attractive option is a personal contract plan (PCP) but remember that you won’t own the car at the end of this so make sure you understand all of the options.
Buying a car should be a pleasurable experience and the better prepared you are going into the process the more likely you are to enjoy it and to get a good deal.
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