Automobile Shopping – 10 Tips and Tricks

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Image result for Automobile ShoppingThe day I have dreaded for years recently arrived – my husband informed me that it is time to think about shopping for a new car. My current ride has served me well, but as it has surpassed 100,000 miles I must concede that my husband is right. A car can only last so long, and as I rely on mine not only for the work commute but for several long trips through the year, I realize I am on borrowed time with mine.
Some years, I can’t decide which is more harrowing: the thought of giving up my current car or the prospect of buying a new one. I do not consider myself an expert in the automotive field, though lately I have come to know the sort of car that suits me best. That said, there are a few tips I have learned over the course of shopping for several cars that others may appreciate.
1) Determine first how much money you have for buying the car. I would love to own a Mercedes Benz, but if I don’t have the budget for a Mercedes, I won’t buy one. You definitely don’t want to go in over your head with an outrageous car payment.
2) Determine the costs associated with the car, in addition to the actual retail price. So the car you’re looking at costs $14,000. Okay, that’s the car price. Will your insurance go up or down, or stay the same, Is it a hybrid, and will you be expected to pay for premium gas, A new car can change the way you pay for things.
3) Research Blue Book values on your current ride. It’s very likely you will trade in your present car to get the new one, so know the trade-in value.
4) Research possible money-saving incentives. If you are military or a senior citizen, some dealers may be willing to cut you a deal. Shop around and see what auto retailers are doing to get you into a car.
5) Know the financing options available to you. Some dealers may be more willing to work with you than others, depending on your financial situation. Most dealers offer financing, and you must figure out if it’s worth it and won’t hurt your bank account.
6) Test drive the car. Drive the cars that most appeal to you. Make notes, and compare the qualities of Car A to Car B, and so on.
7) Be prepared for disappointment. You may find a car that literally calls to you to take home. It’s roomy, offer great gas mileage, and the kids love it. However, the price may be too high or the dealer doesn’t want to give you anything for your trade in. Sometimes, you have to concede that it isn’t the right purchase.
8) Don’t let a salesman intimidate you. We all know about the stereotypes attached to the car salesman. Truthfully, some can be hands-off, but it’s important to know the salesman is not your friend. He’s trying to sell you a car, and you must be strong during the negotiation process. Don’t let anybody guilt you into buying a car you’re not sure you want.
9) Don’t settle for one make/model. Even if you’re a die-hard Ford fan, or you’ve driven Chevys since you were sixteen, don’t rule out other possibilities. Explore different makes and models and see how they stack up to your needs.
10) Lastly, take your time. Even if there is a sense of urgency in buying a new car, this is a big decision. Go into it informed and ready to deal.

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