If you are thinking about buying a car, it’s important to be an educated consumer. There are some things to consider before you commit. “Buy here pay here autos” are a good option for some people, but others might want to look into financing a used car. With so many people and companies offering advices when it comes to car sales, here are a few things to think about.
- There are almost 18,000 car dealerships in the United States.
Why is this important? Because it means you have options. The most important thing you can do as a consumer is talk to several car dealerships. Car sales is a huge industry–over 40 million cars were sold in 2012–so each business competes with the others. When you walk in armed with the knowledge that salesmen offer competitive pricing to keep their sales high, you can negotiate a better deal and save money on your purchase.
- Buying a used car is a smart financial decision.
Cars that are only one or two years older than the most recent model are up to 30% cheaper than new cars. By the same logic, new cars lose up to 30% of their value in the first two years of ownership. If you’re worried about getting a car that has had another owner, talk to someone who specializes in used car sales. They will likely tell you that used vehicles are meticulously cleaned and detailed to get them ready to sell, so the end product is in great condition for the customer.
- Before you get into business with a car dealer, make sure you know the risks.
If you don’t have great credit, this could mean you will pay higher interest rates. It might seem like a good idea at the time, but you want to make sure you know what you’re signing, because interest charges can add up over time. On the other hand, there are so many car dealerships that finance auto loans that you may be able to find someone who has reasonable rates.
- Consider a “buy here pay here car dealership” to save money in the long run.
Paying for your car up front might mean you can’t get a fancy new car, but over time this will save you money. If you have the money to pay for your car in full, you won’t have interest charges.
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