Are you thinking about buying a new vehicle? Because vehicles cost so much money you want to be sure to find the right car for you. Before you even leave the house to start shopping you need to ask yourself some questions and seriously consider your needs and wants. As you work on answering these questions you can begin to make a short list of the vehicles that meet your requirements and fit within your budget.
What Type of Vehicle Do You Need?
The type of vehicle that you need will depend on your situation and personal requirements:
- Are you single or married?
- Do you have children?
- Do you travel a lot?
- Will you be using your vehicle for work purposes too?
- Will you ever be towing a fifth wheel?
Your answers will help you narrow down what type of vehicle to buy.
For example, if you have kids you may need a SUV with plenty of room for people and for storage. If you use your vehicle a lot for work, the type of vehicle you will buy will depend on the type of work you do. By that I mean, are you a salesman that is on the road a lot, or are you a contractor that needs a truck?
What Options Do You Need?
It seems like every few years car manufacturers include certain features as standard options and other features cost extra.
Think about the options that you must have, the options that would be nice to have, and the ones you can definitely live without.
Options are things like power windows, air conditioning, Bluetooth, heated seats, type of stereo, keyless entry, and so much more.
How Much Can You Afford to Spend?
One of the most important questions is how much can you afford to spend on a car. Are you planning to buy a vehicle that will cost you $50,000 or one that will cost you $28,000?
Have you been saving money each year for your next vehicle so that you can pay cash? Or do you plan on financing your next car through a car finance loan, or a lease from the dealership?
Will You Buy New or Used?
There are pros and cons to buying a used vehicle and a new vehicle. Some people feel that they lose a lot of money when they buy a new car. Others believe that buying a new car is important because then they are not buying someone else’s headaches.
Your decision to buy new or used will be based on your current requirements as well as your past history with other vehicles, and of course the amount of money you can afford to spend.
How Much Will Maintenance & Insurance Cost?
Once you have a short list of the type of vehicle you would like to buy you should phone your insurance agent and get some quotes on car insurance premiums. You may be surprised at how high your premiums will be for certain vehicles. I even remember a time when the insurance premiums were higher for red cars versus any other colors.
As well you want to take into account how much routine maintenance is going to cost while you own this car. Vehicles need oil changes, air filters, new brakes, the occasional new windshield, tires, etc. And if you buy a luxury or performance model you are generally going to pay a lot more for high end replacement parts versus their standard counterpart.
If you decide to buy a used vehicle that suddenly conks out six months later your maintenance costs may run quite a bit higher.
Take all of that into account, as you make your decision.
What is The Vehicle’s Reputation Like?
Once you have narrowed your choices down always do some research to check out the history and reliability of the manufacturer and the vehicle itself.
How Fuel Efficient is This Vehicle?
Since the price of gas continues to increase it is important that you consider how fuel efficient the vehicles that you are considering buying are, especially if you will be driving quite a bit to work, and to family activities. Compare the gas mileage of each vehicle to see which one will work the best based on your budget and finances. The less money you end up spending on gas, the better.
In the old days you had to visit car dealerships to gather information on each vehicle. Nowadays many of your questions can be answered by doing research online. This is a huge timesaver, and instead of being persuaded into buying a vehicle based on a sales pitch, you can buy your next vehicle based on concrete facts and your personal requirements.