Why Buying a Car Is a Very Big Decision

by Staff

Where on earth do you begin with buying a car? There are literally millions of choices spanning every price point, model type, age, color, bell and whistle you could possibly imagine, and rounding your search down to find “the one” can involve a rather arduous and drawn-out process.

Because of this, one might think it better to just pick any car rather than the car – after all, all you need is a motor to get you from A to B, right? Yes, you do, but that doesn’t mean you should take car buying lightly. A car purchase is a big deal, usually costs a lot of money and getting it right or wrong can affect your daily life from the moment you buy it ‘til the day you sell.

Indeed, here’s why you should take the car buying process seriously, and how you can make sure you’ve done everything in your power to get it right.

It’s one of few “life” purchases

There are only a handful of big “life” purchases. Buying a house is the big one, then there are things like paying for a wedding or going on the trip of a lifetime. Buying a car is perhaps a step down from those things – you might do it multiple times over your life – but it’s still a sizeable purchase that plays a fundamental role in your day-to-day lifestyle. As such, the buying process behind it deserves a certain level of respect.

It costs a pretty penny

According to the NimbleFins, the average median cost of a used car in 2021 on Autotrader is £12,000. Regardless of whether you’re buying used or new, your car is going to cost a decent chunk of money – more than you’ll spend on virtually anything other than the other big life purchases mentioned above – and usually mean having to spend out of carefully collected savings or taking on a long-term finance package.

Whenever thousands of pounds are involved in a purchase, you’d best take it seriously, so don’t just jump into any deal.

It’ll affect your everyday life

The car you buy will effectively be a life partner for the duration of your ownership period, getting you to and from work every day, hauling your weekly shopping and supporting any extracurricular interests you might have that you attend on a regular basis.

If you buy a good car that runs well, life runs smoothly. If you buy a bad car with reliability issues, then life can become a bit of a mess. When you have a lot of transport needs, as many do, the efficiency of your day-to-day life can be largely reliant on your car doing its job. Especially when fishing around in the used market, paying close attention to seeking out a good used car over a bad one will be worth its weight in gold.

How do you make the right decision on a car?

So, there are some fairly simple but important reasons why you need to take care in picking your new car, but how do you do it? Here are a few key pointers to ensuring you’re on the right track:

  • Take some time to narrow down the type of car you’re looking for before you actually start looking. What sort of model suits your lifestyle? What’s your budget? What running costs can you afford? What sorts of features do you want? These sorts of questions will help eliminate a load of unfeasible options from the process for you so you can tailor your searches.
  • If you’re buying used, understand what to look out for when buying a second-hand car, and consider the pros and cons of buying from a dealership versus buying from a private seller – for example, buying from your average Toyota dealer in Northern Ireland comes with more assurances than buying from an individual looking for a quick sale, but will it cost you more? Weighing these sorts of factors up will help you avoid those “too good to be true”, bad value deals that can come back to bite you down the line.
  • Regardless of whether you’re buying new or used, paying in full or taking on a finance deal, shop around. There are thousands of different sellers to choose from who’d love to get your custom, so use it to your advantage when negotiating deals. Don’t be afraid to haggle, play competitors off against one another and, of course, walk away from a deal when you don’t feel comfortable.

Unfortunately, there’s no exact science to buying the right car for you, it’s more a case of carefully considered trial and error. However, the more you carefully consider all the different factors that go into a good or bad car deal, the more likely you are to come away with a winner. So, if it’s time to buy yourself a new car, make sure you give the process the attention it deserves.

Photo by Sourav Mishra

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The New Jersey Digest is a new jersey magazine that has chronicled daily life in the Garden State for over 10 years.

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