Currently, new vehicle prices are around 12.2% higher than they were last year, with used car prices even more expensive. Unfortunately, just because prices are high right now, that doesn’t mean you can necessarily put off buying a new car.
So, what can you do to make sure the process is easier? Continue reading to learn the most important things to consider before you purchase a new car so you can hit the road with no speed bumps.
1. How Much You Can Afford
First this first, before you start shopping, you need to determine how much you’re comfortable spending. Take a look at your current budget and figure out a range of how much you can afford for monthly payments. To help the process go smoothly at the car dealer, it helps to look into car loans before you go and get pre-approval if you can.
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2. Which Models You Like
Once you have a better sense of what you can afford, you can start to research different makes and models in your budget. By doing this research online first, you’ll feel more prepared going into the dealership, which can help make the process feel less overwhelming.
Online, you’ll also be able to see some price estimates, so you’ll know if a dealer is trying to overcharge you if their prices greatly differ.
3. Which Features Are Most Important to You
When you’re looking at different makes and models, be sure to pay attention to the different features available to you. It might be helpful to rank them in order of importance. For example, do you want safety features like lane assist? Or do you prefer a comprehensive technology package with the best possible sound system?
By figuring out the features that are most important for your needs, it will help you eliminate certain vehicles once you’re at the dealership, making it easier to make a final decision on what to buy.
4. Whether You Want to Buy or Lease
One of the most important decisions to make is whether you want to buy a new car outright or lease it instead. Leasing is a great option if you don’t plan to keep the car for years. It also tends to offer lower payment options and comes with some included maintenance and repairs. However, most leases have mileage restrictions, which is not ideal if you do a lot of commuting.
Buying, on the other hand, is the better option if you plan to keep the car for the foreseeable future. If you plan to buy, keep in mind that your payments will likely be higher and you’ll be responsible for paying for repairs.
Be Prepared When Buying a New Car
Now that you know the most important things to consider when buying a new car, you should feel more prepared to start the buying process with confidence. If possible, try to take your time to find something you can comfortably afford that has all the features that mean the most to you.
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