Preparing for Your First Car

The following is a guest post.

You have passed your driving test and you are ready to hit the road, well done, but now you have to make sure you are prepared to part with your money in order to get the perfect vehicle for you. Your first car is a very personal thing, you may want something that will simply get you from A to B, or you want the latest car on the market. Either way it will come with a price tag that you need to be able to cover. The best way to get the most for your money and fro your car is to do your research up front. This should involve everything from looking at your local dealerships, to searching for car insurance quotes. Whatever you start to search for, here are some key pointers to help you out:

Shop Smart

Remember, all car salesmen are looking to get the most from their customers in order to get more commission. They are trying to make their living, so if you start to visit dealers without having done your research you could get stung with the wrong deal for your needs.

It is always advisable to go for a pre-owned vehicle as your first car purchase. There are two main reasons for this, firstly they are cheaper to buy and secondly your insurance will be less. As a first time driver, your comprehensive insurance will be more than that of someone who has 10 years driving experience, so you need to make sure that you get the best for the money that you are spending. You will need to have an idea of the types of insurance available to you before you chose the right car, speaking to the insurance companies is a great place to start. AXA Insurance, as an example, will talk you through every step of the insurance process which will help you to make the right decision.

You will want to make sure that any pre-owned car you buy still has a warranty on it, or one that you can get from the dealership. As used cars tend to have more issues than that of their brand new counterparts, this will help to protect your investment should anything go wrong.

Since you have done your research, you will presumably have an idea of the kind of car you would like. The main thing, that all drivers want but especially first time car owners, is a vehicle that will be dependable. Visit more than one dealership to gain a wide view of the cars available to you. Once you have made your pick, you need to make sure that all your finances are in order. Whether you are choosing to buy out right or get your car on financing, the most important thing to remember is that the ticket price is only for your car, it doesn’t include the insurance, tax and any other features that you may want to add.

Get behind the wheel

Going for a test drive is imperative! You wouldn’t buy a pair of shoes without trying them on and a car is no different. By test driving a car, you will not just be getting an idea of how it handles, but also the roominess, the features and the cars safety.

Try sitting in all the seats, presumably there will be a point where you will have passengers, so check what the seats, window positions and leg room is like from their point of view. Spend time in the vehicle. Even if you feel you have been in there too long, it is a lot of money to make a wrong decision with. Finally, take it out of the lot to see how it handles on the road, checking all the features work, such as window wipers and that the speedometer is reading correctly.

Finally, and only if needed, take the car to an independent mechanic. There will usually be a small fee for this, but it is worth every dollar to make sure that you will be paying the right mount for the right car. Some dealerships wont like having the car inspected by an outside party, but stick to your guns, bring a mechanic along to have a quick check of the vehicle and allow the dealer to be present at the time.

Good luck on your first car!

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