Most people agree there’s something special about experiencing new things for the first time in life. Whether it’s going overseas, bungee jumping, or falling in love with your first crush. Adding to that, there’s something special about buying and owning your very first car. The realisation that you no longer have to rely on difficult public transport or organising lifts is exhilarating. Buying a car gives you independence and the ability to go anywhere you want at any time of day.
Whether you’re looking for a new car now, or in a few months, here are a few tips for buying your first car.
Buy what you can afford
The latest high-horsepower model might be gorgeous but it can dent your pocket. There are many second-hand cars which are in great condition and won’t cost you a salary each month. You could get your car through a private car sale or a dealership. Why not buy a car that’s affordable now, while saving up for your dream model? This will not only allow you to pay cash for the sports model of your dreams, but also eliminate the need to acquire debt.
You should avoid buying a larger car as it will end up costing you more than a smaller one. You’ll have plenty of time in life to buy a bigger, luxurious car which will suit your lifestyle and bank account.
When owning a car, you’ll encounter unforeseen costs, such as car repairs or replacing windscreen wipers. Be sure to set up your monthly budget so that these costs are covered. There are, of course, the recurring costs of petrol and car insurance, which you’ll need to budget for on a monthly basis.
Go online to see product reviews about the car you want to buy. Customers often complain about certain problems which they might have encountered while using the car. Reviews will give you valuable feedback on deciding if buying the car is worth while. If customer are complaining about crucial features, such as the air conditioning or stabiliser car, they rather reconsider your future purchase.
Here’s what you need to know if you buy the car secondhand
If you’re buying a pre-owned model from someone then make sure you meet them in a public space. Be sure to let your loved ones and friends know where you’ll be. You could be buying your car from scammers who don’t have a car to sell, but instead want to steal your deposit money.
Before you even set a foot in the car to take it for a test drive, inspect the exterior of the car to see if it’s in good condition. Use a paint gauge if necessary. If a car has been repainted it could be a sign that it was involved in an accident and may have been totalled. Although a car may have been fixed after being in an accident, there could still be problems with it. The panel beater may have done a poor job with fixing the car, which could lead to constant repairs and maintenance.
When you test drive the car, you must make sure the headlight, brake lights and turn signals all work. Also, make sure that the heater and air conditioner work. You should also listen out for strange sounds as you accelerate the car and make sure the steering wheel doesn’t shake or vibrate at any speed.
Make sure it’s roadworthy
You should take it to a mechanic who can do a thorough inspection of the car and they’ll let you know if it’s roadworthy or has problems. The person selling the car might be hiding critical information about the car such as if it’s been in an accident. If you buy a car which will give you problems down the line, you could end coughing up money to fix the damages.
Ask for the necessary paperwork to ensure that the car wasn’t stolen. And you should also ask for service records to make it has been maintained over its lifespan.
A lot of emotions could run through you when you buy your first car but don’t let sheer excitement lead you to buying a car on a whim. You first need to inspect the car to see if it’s roadworthy and ticks all the right boxes.