* Tips for Buying a Car, for the Newbie

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Perhaps you’ve never purchased a car - because you never needed one, or you may have been gifted one as a teen - or you’ve bought a car, but always paid cash upfront, and never dealt with a dealership. Whatever the reason for your car-buying nerves, we’re here to tell you that there’s no reason to fret. With just a few simple tips, you can strut confidently into any showroom or dealership and buy a great car, one that is affordable and stylish and everything you want in a vehicle. 

 Here’s a few tips to get you started. 

Go to a Reputable Dealership

“Buy here pay here” car lots serve a purpose, and if you can’t avoid going to one, you can navigate these carefully by remembering that price points can always be negotiated, knowing your rights as a consumer, and making sure that the dealership discloses any problems with the vehicle upfront and before cash changes hands. But beware: many of these lots of strict rules (such as weekly payments instead of monthly payments), usually make you sign a contract to buy “as-is”, meaning that if the car breaks down after you buy it, you’re still stuck paying, and often the prices, while cheap, aren’t always going to line up with the Kelley value. 


A reputable dealership, while still trying to make a sale, is a much more honest and fair approach to car buying. It is harder to obtain fencing from these dealerships based on credit, that’s true, but you’re going to get a fairer shake. Reputable dealerships like Harwoods Group Dealerships and others will ensure you get a car based on your budget, down payment, credit and most of all your needs and preferences. You’ll be able to test drive a number of new or like-new vehicles that you know have been carefully maintained, check for safety issues, repaired and detailed. Most cars you purchase from a dealership will include a warranty so that if any issues arise, they can be fixed. Many dealerships also offer free or discounted oil changes and more. And there are options if you happen to miss a payment. It’s worth going to a legit dealership, if you can. 


Negotiating

Most cars on a lot, especially the used ones, have some wiggle room for price. If you see one you love and it’s just slightly out of your price range, don’t be afraid to haggle a little. If the salesperson sees you’re about to walk, they are likely to come down on the price. Letting them know your budget upfront - what your down payment is, and what monthly payment you can afford - will also weed out any cars that are way out of range so you can focus on the ones that are affordable. Don’t be afraid to make an offer! 


Test Drive Multiple Cars

You might set sights on one that you love right off the bat, but be sure to test drive and examine several cars before making the final choice. Choosing the first car you see isn't smart - you never know if a better, more affordable car is waiting in the wings. Be sure to ask questions, and don’t be afraid to inspect the car for damage, scratches, signs of an accident, and pop the hood and check out the engine. Read reviews, look up recall info, and do all your research before signing on the dotted line. 

If you follow these steps, you can easily and smartly buy a new car without any hassle.  Disclaimer: Collaborative Post*


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