Buying your first car? Exciting, isn’t it? But before you start browsing, it’s important to have a checklist. After all, a vehicle is a big commitment — choose the right one, and you’ll be more likely to enjoy driving it.
To help you make the right decision, follow our top three tips for first-time buyers.
1. Buying Price
What does your budget look like? If you’re not sure, you may want to set one. First-time buyers are often vulnerable to being overcharged for vehicles, as some sellers assume that they’re unaware of how the industry works.
So, to avoid paying more than you need to, pinpoint a maximum spending target. Not sure what the going rate is? Fear not: you could easily find out by exploring the market — car publications like Auto Trader and The Car Expert are particularly useful for this.
Likewise, reputable motor brokers can provide reliable advice and information on vehicle pricing.
Buying price is crucial — but it’s worth being mindful of a car’s ongoing costs, too. Most often, fuel efficiency is key, especially when it comes to buying your first motor.
If you’ve never owned a car before, you may be surprised by how much fuel prices can add up. To stay on top of your money, consider the make of car you’d like to invest in, as some can be more fuel efficient than others.
Hybrid vehicles, for example, are designed to reap lower oil costs than traditional models. Run by two different power sources — an internal combustion engine and electric generator — the former needs far less fuel than a regular car to work.
If your budget can’t stretch to this kind of make, seek an auto with a small engine. Like a hybrid, it won’t require as much fuel as a large-engine vehicle.
3. Long-Term Value
This is your first car — you’re unlikely to want to keep it forever. At some point, you may choose to sell it and invest in another model. That’s where long-term value comes in.
When you buy your first vehicle, it’s vital to consider this factor — and it’s usually easy to determine whether or not a car will retain its current worth or not.
It may come as a surprise, but a lot of the time, older motors tend to be better for this. Typically, a new model depreciates by 15 – 35 per cent in value within its first year; this amount may then rise to around 50 per cent over the next three years.
Older cars, on the other hand, lose less value over time. With this in mind, why don’t you invest in one? Find a trustworthy merchant, and you’ll be able to secure a high-quality motor.
Specialists like Imperial Car Supermarkets, for example, offer used cars at an exceptional standard. Shop wisely, and you’ll be able to secure both immediate and long-term value.
Now that you know what to look for in your first car, you can find a model that suits you. And so, you stand to make the most from your money.