During a period of economic instability caused by COVID-19, people should be twice as careful about expensive purchases. This article contains precious advice on how to buy a good new or second-hand car.
When choosing a new car, many people get too emotional. When they come across a model that they find prestigious, they want to sign the contract as soon as possible. But if you want to plan your budget rationally, you need to carefully think over your purchase. In this article, you will find valuable recommendations on how to get a top-notch car щn the most favorable conditions.
Consider an Electric or Hybrid Car
National governments and car manufacturers believe that the future belongs to electric cars. The latter announce their plans to stop making new vehicles that consume diesel or gas. The former update their legislations to foster the production of eco-friendly cars and make the exploitation of older models economically unviable.
Modern electric cars are functional and comfortable. Their acceleration is impressive and they produce very little noise when you drive them. If compared to gas, the price of the electricity that such an auto consumes might be 10 times as low. But it needs a long time to charge, preferably all night long. If you need to drive a lot during the day, the last thing you want is to see your battery die in the middle of a highway. This is why you might prefer a hybrid means of transportation. An electric car is equipped only with an electric motor and has no internal combustion engine. For hybrid cars, the electric motor is auxiliary and they get their main energy from the internal combustion engine.
Purchase a Car at the End of the Year
Most dealers start offering discounts in October. In December, you should be able to find the best bargain — but your choice of vehicles might be too limited. Those who are looking for autos of a particular color or a certain configuration should buy one in Autumn.
Make the Most of Your Insurance
Some insurance companies offer discounts for clients who have completed an approved defensive driving course. Thanks to such courses, drivers can also reduce the number of points on their licenses. Before signing up for the class, ask your insurance company whether it will give you any perks.
Also, there might be incentives for vehicles that have several drivers or drivers who insure several vehicles. If you are planning to drive the car on your own and this is the only auto that you insure in this company, be ready to pay the maximum price.
Mileage matters too. The more miles you drive per year, the more you need to pay. When filling in the questionnaire of your insurance company, you will most likely come across the mileage question. Ask your agent in advance whether you can cut down your expenses on this point. Think of ways to reduce your mileage to meet the threshold. But please do not tell lies — if the insurance company gets to know that you deliberately indicated wrong data, next time you would fail to get any bonuses from them.
Weigh Up the Pros and Cons of Leasing
When leasing a car, you would normally pay less than when financing it. Actually, you will need to pay only towards depreciation but not the full value of the auto. Lease contracts normally last for around 3 years. Then, you can trade your means of transport in and opt for a new one. Such an approach will enable you to try different models, colors and configurations. Thanks to a short lease term, you will be unlikely to come across many mechanical issues. And if there are some, the manufacturer’s warranty should cover them.
But of course, it all depends on your driving style. If there is too much damage, wear and tear by the moment you turn in the vehicle, you will need to pay for it out of your pocket. Plus, the mileage for the lease will not be uncapped. If you exceed the limit, you will need to pay extra for every mile.
Discard $0 Down Offers
They might seem tempting at first sight — but in the end, you will need to overpay. The sum of the loan contains not just the full price of the auto but also taxes and other fees. When you put 20% down, this means you will not need to pay fees for this sum. If you accept the 0% down offer, you will need to pay your dealership or bank much more than your purchase is worth.
Be Picky When Selecting Second-Hand Vehicles
Before the pandemic, consumers with a limited budget should have purchased used cars and not brand new ones. But today, it might be challenging to find a second-hand auto in good condition and at an affordable cost. If you look, for instance, at used cars in Philadelphia, you will notice that their prices are higher than usual and the selection is limited. Due to COVID-19, many people are unsure about their economic stability. But they do not want to use public transport for the fear of catching the virus. This is why they prefer buying old cars. Besides, during the lockdown, fabrics temporarily stopped producing new autos. This was another factor that contributed to the rise in prices on the second-hand market. Do not hurry to buy just any used car. Examine it carefully and try to avoid overpaying.
Avoid Buying Cars that Are Too Far Away from You
On the Internet, you might find attractive announcements from dealers from remote states. Most often, their prices do not include the costs of transportation. If you genuinely like the car, get in touch with the seller and ask them how much it will take to transfer the purchase to you.
If you want a new car, you can buy or lease it. You can choose a gas, diesel, electric or hybrid vehicle. You can minimize your insurance expenses but you should not accept 0% down offers. Invest enough time and effort in calculations and you will find a deal that perfectly matches your individual demands.