Car Buying Tips To Save You Money and Stress
For many consumers, buying a new or used car can be a daunting task. Some people feel stressed out over high-pressure sales tactics. Others are confused by the sheer number of makes, models and options. With helping make your new or used vehicle purchase a little easier and less stressful, consider the following tips:
- Know what you can afford before you step foot on a show lot or browse online. Sure, we’d all love to have the fanciest, fastest, biggest, latest and greatest when it comes to a vehicle. But can your family budget realistically afford that? A good rule of thumb is that all car-related expenses (including gas, insurance and repairs) should be no more than 20% of your take-home pay.
- Get pre-approved for an auto loan before visiting the dealerships. This can help address the “how much can I afford?” question before a charming salesperson has you head-over-heels for something you really can’t afford. You can get pre-appoved quickly and easily on our website.
- With that in mind, be sure the model you test drive is the one in your price range. Dealers are notorious for putting you in the top model for a test drive, even if it’s not in your price range, because they know you will be disappointed once you drive the less fancy model. Don’t let them do that to you, or you could be driving off the lot with something you really can’t afford.
- Research your purchase. Check out the vehicles you’re considering by reviewing online resources like consumerreports.org or edmunds.com. Also check out individual dealer websites for a better idea of what’s available and price ranges.
Also note that the post-COVID buying environment has prompted some dealers to require financing with them to take advantage of dealership and manufacturer special offers. We can help you weigh the pros and cons to see if financing with us would still save you money.
As with many important decisions, being as educated as possible before signing on the bottom line can both empower and encourage you as a buyer. You’re also always welcome to call or drop by a branch to visit with our team of loan specialists!