Words by, Peter Minkoff
Photography by, Nick Urteaga
The article below is a featured guest post enunciated, and written by lifestyle writer at Men-Ual magazine UK, Peter Minkoff. Specially written for www.igeeokafor.com. Edited and Approved by, Igee Okafor.
If the time has come for you to buy a car, it probably means you’re quite excited, but also possibly worried about making the right choice. After all, not many people have the luxury to splash out a lot of cash on a car without considering many options. So, here’s a list of ten tips that should help you make the right call.
Start by defining a strict budget and make sure you don’t go over it. Also, don’t forget to calculate other expenses, such as taxes, fees and warranties and the inevitable maintenance. Remember that owning a car means you’ll have to spend more than the amount on the sticker.
- The Down Payment
Your old car can be used a down payment for a new one. Unless you’re buying a second car for your partner, there’s no need to keep the old car. Also, you want to reduce the cost of a new car as much as possible. The higher the down payment, the lower your monthly payment. It’s that simple.
- Financial Projection
Those whose financial situation is not stable really need to make some realistic projections and find out how much they’ll be able to spend on the new car in the future. This projection should include gas money, maintenance and registration. Some people suggest you think in terms of the 20/4/10 rule, i.e. you need to put down 20% of the car’s value, spend around 10% of the monthly income on expenses and complete the financing process in no more than four years. Your situation might be different, but it’s a decent yardstick.
- Saving on Maintenance
By selecting parts, fluids and other things you need which don’t cost an arm and a leg, but yet provide the same quality will help you keep your maintenance costs to the minimum. Planning ahead and looking for good deals always pays off.
If you’re not in a hurry, you should wait for the end-of-year sale to buy a car or just before a new model is announced. When it comes to buying a used car, you can get a good deal on a car with some scratches, which make no difference to its performance, but can drive the price down.
- Keep an Open Mind
Very often, people are put off from buying a particular car because of its undeserved bad reputation. There are many good cars that might not have the appeal of some famous models, but are equally good and provide excellent value for money.
- Ask for Help
If you’re not an expert, you need someone who knows much more than you about cars to help you make the right choice. It can be a friend or family member or a recommended mechanic. Take their opinion seriously and consider it before making the purchase.
- The Salesman is Not Your Friend
When negotiating a deal, you have to remember that the salesman is only interested in closing the deal and not helping you get what you need. This is particularly true if you’re ready to spend more. The higher the stakes, the more profit they’ll make and they might try to push you into buying a car that’s far from the best option for you.
- Take At Least One Test Drive
You mustn’t buy a car without testing it first. Make sure you have at least one test drive, although you might need to repeat it. Ideally, you should be able to test your potential purchase on an open road and in the city and see how it behaves and whether you feel comfortable behind the wheel. It might be good to take someone with you, who would pay attention to details, such as legroom in the back.
- Read Reviews
Many people have posted about their experience with a particular model or brand. Make sure you conduct a thorough research before buying a car. After all, you rely on such recommendations when choosing your holiday destination, so why wouldn’t you do the same when it comes to buying a car?
Thank you for reading!