Let’s talk sensibly. If you are a family and are looking for a new car, there is no way that you can have your dream car – yet. You will want something that is versatile as it is chic, as ergonomic as it is classy and as fuel-efficient as it is fast. You are basically looking for the car of all cars to keep your most prized possessions safe and get from A-B as quickly and effortlessly as possible.
You’re not asking for the world – although it may seem like it. These cars do exist, but there are so many things to take into consideration before you go out and snap one up.
Look for a car that’s in your price range
Don’t set your hopes on something that you can’t achieve – and don’t set your sights on something that you can’t afford. Know what your price range is and if you are going into a dealership, make sure that the car salesperson knows that you can’t step outside of this. Be gentle but firm with them – they are always looking for extra ways to bring in a bit of cash as their commission. This isn’t in your best interests if you don’t have the money, and they need to know this.
Consider how far you can stretch your budget
This is a bit of a hypocrisy on the last paragraph, but you want to try and get the best deal. Don’t let on to how much you actually have to spend or how far you can stretch your budget. If you are set out exactly what you have and insist that you can’t go over, they may just lower the price of another car for you. Sly, but it work the majority of the time.
Look towards finance or a loan
Let’s be honest – most people consider borrowing money when looking to purchase a car, because the amount of cash required to get you a new vehicle can be thousands. Not everybody has that just lying around spare. Once you save up enough money to get a nice car, it’ll probably be used towards other things like a college fund or mortgage deposit. To help you figure out how much you can afford to borrow and pay back, look online for a secured loan calculator before you step out and start haggling in person. If you know your facts before you set out your finances, you’ll do just fine.
One dealership is not the be all and end all – and it may not even be a dealership where you find your perfect car. Have a snoop around online and see what you can find on car trading sites, and even go old school and have a look in the classified ads section of your newspaper. Word of mouth can be a beautiful thing, especially when it leads you to something that you want for a reasonable price.
Think about extras
You’ll need to include any extras into your budget like a service plan and general maintenance. When taking our finance or a loan, remember to factor into it how much you are going to be spending on gas each month as well as your monthly payment; if you calculate your monthly expenditure on your car as one huge lump sum that’s inclusive of everything you need to get it going and keep it maintained, you won’t be shocked at any surprise charges – mainly because you probably won’t be getting them.
Make it last
Choose a car that you know you can stick with. If you are planning on expanding your family, get one that has the right amount of seats. You may want a people carrier rather than a standard 5-seater, even if you are only planning to or have three children; car seats can take up a lot of room, and it’s better to be safe and have them all in their own individual space rather than squished up against each other for convenience. Pick a vehicle that offers you the right amount of storage that you need for journeys whether long or short; if it is your first family car you want something that will be able to take a buggy plus any extras and essentials that you may need along the way. The car that may have suited you pre-parenthood may not necessarily be able to adapt to the demands of a new baby; although they’re only small, they need all the room you are able to afford.