Affording a new car isn’t always easy. Not only do you typically need a down payment, which could run you thousands of dollars, but you have to take on a monthly payment as well. If you have a tight budget, you’re likely looking for some ways to help you afford a new car. Use the tips below to do this, and hopefully you’ll find that the new car you want is within reach.
1. Consider All of Your Car Options
First, you want to go over all of the options available to you. You might have a car model in mind that you want to get, but there are likely similar models out there. Going through all of your options, comparing them against one another, and considering the costs, is a great way to find the most affordable car model that suits your needs. After that, think about whether you want to buy the car, lease it, or if you want a new or used car. Each one has its pros and cons, and it will really depend on your own situation and needs.
2. Buy Someone Else’s Lease
A newer option these days is to take over the lease payments for someone else. If someone leases their car, and is no longer able to make the payments, they might look for someone else to take over the payments for them. This can often be a great way to get a good deal on a newer car, and for a shorter period of time than a typical lease. Check out this guide for more information on the pros and cons of taking over someone else’s lease.
3. Shop at the Right Time of Year
There are certain times of the year when it is more affordable to buy a car. For example, a lot of dealerships have sales around Labor Day, Christmas, and July 4th. Many dealers are also under pressure to meet sales quotes near the end of the month, and particularly near the end of the quarter, so this is another good time to shop.
4. Get as Much as You Can For Your Current Car
If you currently have a car, that you plan on getting rid of for the new car, you’ll want to get as much as you can for it. See what the dealer will give you for a trade in, and then consider if you can get more by selling it on your own. If your car is in bad shape, you could look for junk yards that buy cars, or even donate it to charity and take the tax right off. The more you can get, the more you’ll have to put towards a new vehicle.
5. Build Up Your Savings
When you purchase a car, you’ll likely need to make a down payment. The larger payment you make, the lower the monthly payment will become going forward. So if you’re not in a rush for a new car, consider building up your savings to make the future monthly payments more manageable.
6. Improve Your Credit Score
Your credit score plays a large role in determining what type of deal you can get from the bank or from the dealership. Check your credit score before you start to shop, and if it’s on the low side, work to improve it. Improving your credit score takes some time, but if you’re patient, you might end up with much better terms on your deal.
7. Have a Safe Driving Record
You need to factor in insurance costs as a part of affording a new car. By having a safe driving record, you can work to lower your insurance rates, and therefore make affording a new car easier. If you find that you’re still paying a lot for insurance despite a clean record, consider switching insurance providers to find yourself a better deal.
8. Learn to Negotiate
Finally, learning some basic negotiating strategies will help you when it comes time to buy a car. Remember that it’s the job of the car salesman to sell you a car for as much as possible, so that they can earn a larger commission. There are plenty of strategies you can use, but one simple one is not letting the salesman know you need a new car. Let them know you have plenty of other options, and that you’re willing to wait until you find the right deal. If the salesman knows you are desperate to purchase a car that day, they are less likely to work with you on the price.
9. You Need to Plan Ahead
The key to affording a new car is planning ahead. If you just decide one day that you want a new car, you’re likely to end up paying more, and making your financial situation more difficult. Take your time, consider your options, get your finances in order, and when you’re ready, start your car search from a position of strength.