Choosing a car requires lots of planning and research if you are to get one that suits your needs. This process can even be more daunting for a first-time buyer. From assessing car models, specs, financing, insurance options, and more.
Here is everything you need to know about choosing the right car for your budget.
Assess your needs
The first step to choosing the right car is asking yourself what you expect out of a car. Do you want a flashy car that will make a business statement or one to go on long road trips during the weekends?
Maybe you need a functional car for everyday duties.
Determine the number of passengers you will be carrying, the terrain, fuel economy, cargo capacity, and your must-have features.
Determine your total budget
Now that you have assessed your needs, set a reasonable upper limit on the much you are willing to spend to lease or buy a car.
Use the 20/4/10 ratio when it comes to car financing. In other words, the down payment should be 20%.
Choose between leasing and buying
You should look into the pros and cons of both leasing and renting so you can decide on the best route for you.
For instance, leasing requires a lower down payment with cheaper monthly installments than buying a vehicle. There is also the challenge of buying a car with little to no credit rating as you seek finances.
Fortunately, there is a solution available. You can look out for companies particularly offering bad credit auto loans to get financial assistance.
Some companies even help you do financial calculations to decide the price for a loan as well as the time. It will make it easier to access finances to make the purchase and repay back the loan over a longer period.
Select your preferred body style
The main body styles include sedans, hatchback, crossover, SUVs, and trucks.
Look into the pros and cons of each and assess which of the five styles will best serve your needs. Select multiple styles and browse the models with the best ratings in each category.
Draw a comparison between other vehicles
You may have your heart set out on a specific model, but what if there are better models out there in the same category?
Take a look at similar cars in the same class as the model of your choice and compare specifications, pricing, and features.
Estimate the cost of long-term ownership
A car might be cheaper to buy but more expensive to maintain and insure in the long run.
Schedule a test drive
After doing your extensive research and finding the car of your dreams, take it out for a test drive and see if the car can maneuver tight corners, drive over bumps and ensure it has sufficient cargo space.
It is advisable to avoid limiting yourself to just one car. If you are still not sure, sleep on it and decide on your verdict in the morning.
That’s it! We hope you can leverage our tips to help you find the right car and the financing options to help the process.
Thanks for reading! Please let me know your thoughts and comments below.
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Sagar Sridhar is a personal finance blogger from Canada. His genuine passion for personal finance coupled with his unique style of writing is what stands out. Professionally, he is a computer engineer, agile certified and has a master’s degree in Project Management. His writing has been featured or quoted in the leading Canadian publications such as Credit Canada and many other personal finance publications. While he is juggling between his day job and blogging, he is the main author on this blog and has miles to go before making the final pit stop.