As a first-time car buyer, there is no better feeling than when you purchase your very first car. Buying a vehicle isn’t as easy as people think especially because of the cost of vehicles these days. However, owning your own car isn’t impossible so if you’re interested in tips for buying your first car then read the following tips below. 

Create a car budget 

For every first time car buyer in South Africa, the very first thing you need to do is have a budget. Creating your own budget will identify how much money you have left to spend each month and which vehicle you’re able to afford.  For many South African owning a vehicle is only possible through having a car loan. It’s always important to know your affordability before going to a lender or car dealership. Your affordability will determine how much you can spend on a vehicle. There is however a lot that you need to consider when looking at your affordability. You need to think about the cost of owning a vehicle, such as the maintenance plan, car insurance and your monthly repayments.  In order for you to determine your affordability, calculate how much you have after deductions. Then calculate how much you will be able to have for your vehicle, this will then determine the price range of the vehicle you can afford.

Car insurance is a must-have 

Having insurance isn’t only for those who are reckless on the roads. In fact, everyone with a vehicle should have insurance. There are many important benefits which come with having insurance and why it is a must-have.  Being insured gives you piece of mind when you’re on and off the road. There are so many things which could happen to your vehicle on any given day. Your vehicle could be involved in a car accident whether you were driving or parked. A car could come out of now where and collide with your vehicle or your vehicle could get stolen or involved in a fire, this is why it’s important to be prepared.  With the money you’re paying towards your car payments, it would be wise for you to have insurance as well. Many lenders require you to have insurance if you’re interested in financing your vehicle. 

Shop around 

As a first time buyer, it’s important that you shop around before choosing the vehicle you wish to purchase. This is to ensure that you get a great deal which is worth your while. When you’re looking for a vehicle to purchase there will be plenty that you see on a day to day basis, some might even seem too good to be true. Usually, those that seem too good to be true are.  However, you will come across a couple of good deals but it’s also important to look around and be certain when purchasing a vehicle. Go to different car dealerships and look at car sites online and see what the purchase price for your specific vehicle is. Once you know how much the vehicle is going for you can then contact the seller. 

Find the best deal for yourself

Even when choosing your dream car it is important to find the right car for yourself. You should always check whether the vehicle of your choose checks all the right boxes. These boxes can include: 
  • Is this car fuel efficient?
  • Should I purchase a second hand or a brand new vehicle?
  • Does this vehicle have enough space to accommodate my loved ones?
  • What safety features does this vehicle have and are they what I need?
  • Is this vehicle for travelling to work or long distances?
These are a few questions you need to ask yourself about your dream car. This is to ensure you are in fact buying a vehicle that is ideal to your needs and not just based on appearance. 

Apply for financing 

Once you have an idea of your budget and the car you’re interested in, you should go to a lender. You should always make sure your credit score is good so that you can have a lower interest rate. Having a good score not only offers you a lower interest rate but it allows you to have a better chance at receiving financing.  Lenders are more likely to offer finance to someone who has a good credit report that someone who has a low report. You can then decide whether you’re interested in getting a balloon payment which is having an outstanding amount which you need to pay once your loan term ends. 

Wrapping it up

Purchasing your dream car is a big deal and although vehicles are quite expensive there are ways in which you can get your dream car within your budget. Always make sure that you plan everything out before you purchase a vehicle to ensure you’re still safe financially.