A vehicle can be a great buy if it can serve its purpose, allow you to travel with ease, and even help you in your daily life. Now that you finally managed to save enough money to buy your own car, you can’t wait to go car-hunting. With the down payment ready, all that’s left is to get your car loan approved.
Does a Car Investment Make Sense During the Pandemic?
Many consumers are investing in cars in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis. They fear their health and safety when sharing public transport with other passengers. They also value the convenience that private cars have to offer, thus the increase in pandemic car-buying.
More people are also craving the great outdoors and want to have their own cars they can use when going on a road trip. As states and cities open their doors to travelers, consumers use their vehicles to drive out of state. Modern consumers also like the fact that during the crisis, car-buying became more high-tech.
Sellers now post their cars for sale on the internet. Dealers are allowing online car loan applications. Contactless test-driving options are also offered to minimize nowadays.
Private vehicles offer a kind of travel convenience no amount of public transport can offer to consumers. Even if the pandemic has serious consequences on many people’s finances, consumers still make car investments. They are investing in their cars for convenience and safety purposes more than for recreational reasons.
Must-dos Before Investing in Your First Car
While preparing yourself financially is one way to safeguard yourself when buying a car for the first, there are other things worth knowing before you make the investment.
Do Enough Research
It is not enough that you already know why you want to buy your first car, what your vehicle and driving needs are, and what your ideal vehicle is. There are too many things you need to know to ensure your investment will be worth it. Here are some critical considerations every first-time car buyer should never forget.
Check if the Car You Are Buying Is Still Under a Lien
In essence, one can consider a lien as an insurance policy for car loan lenders. They use this as protection in case the borrower defaults on the loan. They won’t put your name on the car title unless you manage to complete your car loan payments.
Not all cars being sold in the market has a lien. You want to make sure your seller owns the vehicle outright. Once everything is settled, you can hire vehicle title services.
Compare Terms and Prices When Buying From Dealers
Some people would instead buy a second-hand vehicle from a dealer. This is since dealers often offer different payment options, give you up to 48 hours to make the decision, and are legally bound to ensure the quality and conditions of the cars they are selling. If buying from a dealer is your go-to choice, make sure to explore your options and compare terms and prices from at least three different dealers.
Check for Car Model Recalls
Not all vehicles are created the same. Some car models are recalled due to safety and quality purposes. If you want to risk investing in a recalled car model, do enough research so you can avoid identified issues from being your future headache.
Don’t Forget About the Vehicle’s History Report
You want more than just the previous owner’s details and the car’s complete papers. A car’s history report holds enough information that you can use when negotiating with the seller and in sealing the deal. You can check for the car’s secrets and save yourself from potential headaches by getting to know the vehicle before buying.
Set a Reasonable Budget
Not many car buyers know how much of a vehicle they can comfortably afford before buying. For one, it should not exceed 20% of your monthly income if you are buying it with a car loan. If you buy a car in cash, make sure you have separate savings for future maintenance and repairs.
Hire a Mechanic
If you are buying a car but are clueless about vehicles, talk to a local mechanic and ask for their help in test-driving your desired vehicle for sale. This will give you better confidence that you are investing in a car that is checked and verified by a mechanic. Don’t forget to work closely with your mechanic so you can keep your new vehicle well-maintained.
Car-buying is on the rise even in the middle of the Covid-19 crisis. If this sounds like your plan, consider this list as your guide to get the most out of your investment. Do your research and buy with a purpose so you can enjoy your first car investment.