Car buying, either new or used, can be an emotion and adrenaline charged experience that you really need to get right.
The team at Motor Codes, a leading provider of Codes of Practice and Alternative Dispute Resolution for the automotive industry, believe there are seven things we should all have in mind when it comes to buying a vehicle.
Motor Codes boss, Bill Fennell, says the golden rule is to take your time.
“Motorists should avoid rushing any decisions and should instead take the time to read up and ensure that their prospective purchase meets their long-term requirements and finances.
“It’s also a good idea to make a concerted effort to examine the small print to avoid any repercussions at a later date.”
Other car buying tips from Motor Codes:
Protect your rights
Buying a vehicle face-to-face or online through a dealership offers you the most protection with the least risk.
Take it for a test-drive
It’s all well and good reading reviews, and seeing what an expert thinks of a certain model. However, the only way to really find out if a car is right, is to get behind the wheel and to see how it performs.
Taking it for a test-run also allows you to get a feel for how it will fit in with your lifestyle and daily commitments, and help determine the specification and the space that you and your family may need.
Stick to your budget
Choosing a car is often an exciting time, and it’s therefore easy to get carried away when seeing new models in the showroom.
Remember, it’s not only about being able to buy the car, but equally significant are the longer term costs for running it.
Look at the figures for fuel consumption, insurance group, registration, servicing and parts.
You should consider affordability both in the short and long term, as circumstances may change, and payments could be harder to make.
The sticker price is rarely cast in stone
When you are ready to go ahead, the price on the car windscreen is often indicative.
Sales staff frequently have some room for negotiation, so it is worth having a conversation to discuss a possible reduction.
Before agreeing the final number, take into account any other costs such as delivery, and ask if this, as well as any options such as floor mats, can be included as part of the package.
Once you have reached an agreement, inclusive of any extras, read the small print before signing any documentation, and never feel pressured into doing so.
It pays to shop around
It’s worth visiting a few sites operated by different car brands before deciding where and what to buy.
The demos can also vary within a franchise group, and therefore, a call ahead will determine which location you should visit.
Value your trade-in
Trading in an existing car can be an effective way of reducing the overall cost of a new one.
There are plenty of guides and resources that are widely available on the internet that will allow you to get an idea of what constitutes a fair price based on criteria such as age, mileage and condition.
This will help avoid handing your car over too cheaply.
Got any other car buying tips you could share with our readers? Send us an email via firstname.lastname@example.org, use the comments section below or the Contact page.