Smart Spending: Buying a Car: The Savings Corner presented by Coosa Valley Credit Union
Now that cars are becoming less and less rare, you may be ready to replace your current vehicle. But, you may be asking yourself these questions. How to buy a car? Where to start? What should I know?
First things first: get pre-approved for financing before You are going shopping. Knowing exactly how much you can afford before choosing a car will help you keep your payments reasonable. Of course, you’ll want to check with your credit union for the best deal on car loan rates!
If you’re buying a new car, you’ll want to shop around and find the car that meets your needs. If you stick to buying just for your needsyou’ll probably end up saving money.
Another tip to remember when buying a new vehicle: always be prepared to walk away if you don’t think you’re getting the best deal.
Since new cars lose most of their value as soon as they are driven out of the car lot, you can see greater value in buying used cars. Here’s what you need to know before buying used:
- whether the car has ever been involved in an accident
- previous mechanical problems
- car maintenance history
A CARFAX report will help you with all this information. You will want to know everything that could have gone wrong with the car and this is the most reliable resource.
Use resources like KBB.com, Edmunds.com, or NADA.com to get an idea of the average price of the car you’re interested in.
A good rule of thumb is to always have a mechanic take a look under the hood before signing on the dotted line. You’ll want them to make sure there are no unknown issues before you buy.
Finally, be sure to check with GAP insurance to make sure you are covered.