Unless you live somewhere that is completely walkable, you probably need a car to get around. However, if you are also budgeting in student loan payments, purchasing a new vehicle may seem impossible. However, buying a car, even when money is tight, is not as hard as you may think. Here is how you can purchase a car and maintain your student loan responsibilities.
Don’t Focus on a Brand-New Car
Although buying a new car is exciting, this purchase should be something simple and affordable. It is tempting to go for the most recent car model, but they are pricey and might not be the best choice. It is best to ignore the temptations and go with a model that is within your price range. Do not let the term “used” deter you from purchasing a car. It doesn’t always mean the car is in need of constant repairs. Certified used cars are always repaired prior to being sold.
Try to Reduce Your Monthly Expenses
Aside from the mandatory car payment, you do have other monthly expenses to worry about, namely student loans. However, the cost of these expenses, albeit groceries or utilities, can impact your ability to pay off your vehicle. If you want to incorporate your car payment into your monthly budget, you might need to compromise a few things. This can include eating out, TV network subscriptions or your gym membership.
But even with these budget changes, it’s possible to still find yourself struggling to make your monthly payments. If that’s the case, you can consolidate your current student loan into a new one. Since they offer lower rates when compared to traditional lenders, a private lender is the way to go. What’s more is that you can know what your payment will be by using a student loan refinance calculator. This can help you prepare in advance, which makes budgeting much easier than it usually is.
Try to Find a Cosigner
Should push come to shove and you find yourself feeling desperate, you can always consider getting a cosigner to help pay for the car. A cosigner is someone who takes on the responsibility of your debt. If something goes wrong, like you missing a payment for example, you have your cosigner to fall back on. A cosigner can be anyone ranging from family to friends to your next-door neighbor. When considering this route, be honest with your financials and your capability to repay the loan.
Keep Building Your Credit Score
The key to acquiring a car loan is decent credit score. Obviously, having perfect credit opens the door for you receive any type of loan. However, having perfect credit isn’t always easy. That is not to say getting a loan is all but impossible without outstanding credit, however, let us just say that the lower your score, the more likely you are to be denied or need a huge down payment. They might also offer you the car with a higher interest rate. A higher interest rate is a lender’s way of ensuring that you’ll pay it by increasing the responsibility. For this reason, taking time to build your credit is sometimes more important than buying a car.