When shopping for new wheels, excitement (or worry!) can often take over our brains! Buyer’s remorse is a common feeling and a lot of ladies often ask themselves what they could have done differently. Here are our tips on what NOT to do when buying a car!
What not to do when buying a car – 13 common mistakes
1. Not shopping around
You wouldn’t buy a house without doing your due diligence, so buying a car isn’t any different! There are many comparison sites and it’s worth taking the extra few minutes scouring each one for the best deal!
2. Not buying used
We get it – everyone loves shiny new things! But buying a brand new car may not be the best financial decision. Cars depreciate in value very quickly – as soon as it leaves the dealership, it’s worth half in value! Buying a used car of the model you want might save you hundreds or thousands if you can tolerate the minor wear and tear!
3. Basing your decision to buy on the monthly instalment
If you’re bartering or figuring out whether something is worth the cost, a lot of people get tunnel vision on the monthly prices. The low instalments may look very affordable, but you could end up paying a lot more in the long run due to inflated interest rates.
4. Making the wrong choice of vehicle
You set your aims to buy a larger car because there are three kids that need ferrying around. And then you end up buying that shiny sports hatchback that barely fits you inside. Then you feel bad about it. We know it can be tempting to get a nice car, but make sure your new buy matches your needs in the first place!
5. Ignoring other costs
Just like we mentioned earlier, you can focus too much on what you’re paying per month as the final cost. Part of the due diligence will involve seeing how much your model will cost in insurance and petrol. So it’s important to factor in these as well.
6. Not making the most of the test-drive
If you want a feel of the car, it’s important to really give it a good drive. The salesperson will normally direct you where to go and you’ll turn down a few streets. But is it enough? Ask for extra time so you understand how the car backups, visibility and other practicalities. Spending the extra time in the car on the road might make or break the decision to commit to it!
7. Giving in to feature creep
Salespeople, if they’re worth their salt, will keep you talking to them. And they’ll add in extra additional features of the car that are upgrades of the standard model. What was luxury now seems like necessity. But that doesn’t mean you won’t need certain features. Make a list and come prepared for what you need to have in the car, as well as what you could do without.
8. Rushing the decision and giving in to pressure
Buying a new car is a stressful procedure. And a common line salespeople use guilt-trips you into missing out on “the deal of a lifetime”. No matter how good a deal it might be, ultimately the car and the deal have to be the best for you. Sleep on it and don’t rush it. You might need to go back to the dealership but if the car is the right one, it’ll be worth it.
9. Trading in your current car for the deposit
It sounds intuitive! I won’t need the car anyway, so why not trade it in at the same time, right? Wrong!
Car dealerships make it seem convenient for you since they’ll take it off your hands and you get paid for it. But they’ll often charge you less than what you’d get for it when selling it outright in a separate sale. Don’t skimp out on the profit!
10. Relying on dealer financing
Again with the convenience! Dealerships will offer you a handy finance plan you can take out right there and then. However, you might lose out in the long run as you’ll be paying a higher interest rate. To avoid this, visit different banks to see what they can offer for a lower-interest-rate loan.
11. Falling for after-sale products
If you’ve settled on the terms of your car, they’ll usually send you to the Finance and Insurance (F&I) department. You actually don’t need anything here – their job is to sell you extras like warranties, paint protection and so on. Don’t be afraid to just say no. When you agree on the terms of the sale, that’s all you need.
12. Not negotiating
In the world of selling cars, men heavily dominate it. So it’s understandable a lot of ladies might feel uncertain or too intimidated to negotiate. It’s easy to point out this one for what not to do when buying a car. But stand your ground and push for your terms so you can reach a reasonable compromise! You can ask for their initial terms by email or fax first if you don’t feel confident going in person. Check out our guide on how to negotiate to get the best deal!
13. Leasing instead of buying
Referring to point 3, this is a big one to look out for when considering what not to do when buying a car. Because you aren’t actually buying it if you’re leasing. The low monthly payments might look really enticing, but at the end of the term, you won’t actually own a car. And in the long-run, you’ll end up paying even more for it if you do choose to buy it.
Ladies, take note of what not to do when buying a car! Share with any friends to help them avoid these common mistakes!
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