Buying a new car is always exciting because the new models are invariably far more advanced, and trendier, and boost your status. However, it is easy to be tempted into buying something bigger, better, and more expensive than you can afford. Some tips for buying a set of wheels and not driving into debt:
Get a Loan Preapproved Before Visiting the Dealer
The best thing you can do when buying a car is to get a preapproved loan. The question of how much you can afford gets settled before you enter a car dealership and prevents you from getting swayed by a hot model with fancy features and trim when all you wanted was a family sedan. The preapproval can also put you in a better position to bargain on the interest offered by the dealer and prevent them from taking you for a ride with a higher interest rate. Approach a reputed lender for a car loan because plenty of shady outfits lie in wait to jack you. Forbes recommends you keep the total cost of the car, including maintenance and running expenses to less than 15% of your monthly take-home pay.
Keep the Transactions Simple at the Dealership
At the dealership, the salespersons will want to know if you want a loan or trade-in your car. It is best not to answer these questions and focus on getting the best price for a cash deal for the chosen model. Once you have the best price, you can discuss the trade-in or the loan so that you leave yourself free to get the best offer elsewhere. Simultaneously asking about the best price, the loan, and the trade-in allows the dealer to make money on one deal while giving a concession on another. If you feel the dealer is not giving you the best offer, be ready to walk away and visit the leading Salinas Chevrolet dealership.
Refrain From Buying Add-Ons at the Dealership
After you have settled the price and the trade-in value, the salesperson at the dealership will hand you over to the finance people. They will generally try to sell you a variety of extras like extended warranties, paint protection plans, gap insurance, tire protection plans, and more. You should know that these are overpriced, and dealers make a lot of money on them. It is best to say no to everything and drive out in your new car, even if the dealer promises to include them in the loan amount. You can always buy what you need at a competitive price from elsewhere.
You must not confuse the cost of the car with the monthly installment. The dealer will invariably push a long-term car loan going up to even seven years to make the monthly installment more affordable. However, the longer the tenor of the loan, the more the total expense on interest. On top of that, long-term loans typically carry a higher rate of interest that can potentially drive you into debt. Think if you need a new car because you can get some good deals on used cars.