What Questions to Ask When Buying A Car
Car buying isn’t for the faint of heart. It takes research, time, and dedication to find the right car for you. Once you find that special car, then it takes extra energy to work the price in your favor. Before you put a down payment on any vehicle, make sure to ask these questions.
- Does this car make me happy? Car buying is an emotional experience. So many of us have always pictured ourselves in a certain car, but think twice before you buy. It may look great on the outside, but does it have everything you need and want on the inside? You may have been dreaming of a Mini Cooper all of your life, but it doesn’t make sense when you have a large family to tote around. See if the car is able to fit your needs, as well as make your heart sing. Once you find the car that can do all that, then it’s time to start talking numbers.
- How much is the car after fees and licensing? Don’t get stuck on the monthly payments. Ask for the full price after everything is added in. You need to know exactly what the car costs because it may be over budget for you. Be honest with what you need and don’t let the dealers push you towards a direction that isn’t right for you. Stand your ground.
This also means that you should have done your homework before stepping foot on the car lot. Before you go car shopping, know what you can afford. Have a minimum and a maximum price range, and try to stay towards the lower end of it. It’s easy to let that maximum number start to creep up higher and higher as you walk around the car lot.
- What is the warranty coverage and how long does it last? The automaker usually has a set warranty coverage over the vehicle for the first few years of its life. Know everything that is covered under that warranty and what isn’t.
Also, usually there are certain perks to buying with that dealer, so ask what they are willing to offer. They want to keep you coming back as a customer, so they will do their best to give you free oil changes, rotation, and even inspections for the first few years. You could spend hundreds of dollars paying for these services if you don’t ask about the warranty coverage.
- Where is the nearest dealer and authorized repair shop? Certain makes and models are more temperamental to work on. It can be frustrating to need a repair done that will take weeks because the shop needs to order special parts. Before buying, know how easy it will be to get regular repairs and maintenance done.
- “Is that the best you can do”? Always, always, always negotiate. Do not accept the price as is on the lot. There’s usually some wiggle room built into the price so the dealer can go down some. If you don’t ask, then they make out like a bandit with extra cash in their pockets. Press them to go as low as possible and see what extra services they are willing to throw into the deal. It never hurts to ask. The worst that can happen is they say no. Don’t let go of your dream car because the price looks a little out of range. See how low you can get them, and then make your decision.
The main thing is to find a car that fits your daily life and is practical, while also staying within your budget. Yes, you want to be proud of that new purchase, but looks aren’t everything when it comes to a car. Look online to see what people are saying, see the current awards, and get behind the wheel to test it out. Once you drive it, you’ll know which one is right for you.