Making this dream a reality, however, takes a bit of planning to ensure you are driving away with a good deal because as any experienced motorist will tell you, owning a car offers a tremendous sense of freedom and independence, but it also comes with a big responsibility.
So to help you make your first car purchase a little less bumpy, Tyre Compare is here to help out with a few important tips.
1. Set a realistic budget
If your parents are helping you with the purchase, get them to help you set a reasonable budget. If you are looking to take out a loan, it’s important to take all expenditures into account, the most important numbers being the down payment and monthly payments. Taxes, registration, and insurance costs must also be considered.
And remember, the bigger the engine and/or the faster the car, the more gas it will consume. Better go for small or midsized sedans and hatchbacks instead if you are on a tight budget. They might not turn heads, but they are cheap to buy, cheap to run, and cheap to maintain.
2. Do your research
If you are on a budget, look for practical options and vehicles with a strong track record of affordable maintenance and reliability. While a shiny new BMW can no doubt bump up your street cred, you might want to think twice once you realize the maintenance costs of such European cars.
Test-drive your top picks
If you’re ready with a shortlist, it’s time to head to your nearest dealership and take your top picks for a test drive. This is your opportunity to see whether you will be comfortable in your car and whether its performance suits your requirements and expectations.
Regardless of whether you’re buying new or used, it’s important that you spend a reasonable amount of time getting to know the vehicle on the road. It’s also a good idea to bring along a checklist to assess the vehicle, taking into consideration factors such as exterior and interior appearance, ride comfort, braking handling, acceleration and more.
If you are buying used, there are pre-purchase inspection services out there that will take the risk out of buying something of unknown history. There is a fee for such inspections but you can treat it as buying peace of mind.
3. Negotiate like a pro
It takes a lot of patience and persistence to get a good deal on the right car—but the rewards can be worth all the effort. Following these tips, you can be well on your way to getting behind the wheel of your dream car as painlessly as possible.