Buying your first car is a significant milestone and something you won’t ever forget – a newfound freedom and independence and something you worked hard to achieve. But the world of cars can be very confusing – do you buy new or used ones? How much will run a car cost? Should you get automatic or manual? The choices can be overwhelming. It doesn’t matter what age you are – whether you’re 17 and just passed or you’ve learned to drive later in life – there are still some important factors to consider when buying a car for the first time. These top tips will make sure you consider everything during your research phase, particularly when saving money or finding the right vehicle for your lifestyle.
Insurance – who to go with?
This is one of the first things you should be looking at. It’s not the most exciting aspect, but finding out what insurance you can get and afford may indicate what type of car you can afford to get. It’s recommended that for your first car, you purchase one that isn’t too powerful and in a lower insurance group. A benefit of this is that these will also often have lower road tax costs, with some having none. Not sure where to start? Have a look online and be diligent in your research. For example, you could go through an insurance broker like kbdinsurance.com, who will be able to talk you through all the terms and find a policy that’s right for you. Get some insurance quotes before considering buying your car to ensure you can afford the model you want.
Consider costs carefully
Buying and running a car is a significant financial investment. There is the initial cost of purchasing the car or putting down a deposit if you’re doing finance. But then there are weekly fuel costs, car insurance, tax, and maintenance costs, including servicing and MOTs.
Consider these financial costs fully when choosing your new car – a car might be cheap to buy but have expensive running and maintenance costs, and you need to see if you can afford this.
New or used?
It’s easy to get carried away with all the choices available, especially with all the new gadgets modern cars offer. Still, the most important thing to remember is to choose a car that you can afford and need. You might be planning a big road trip down the line, so a bigger car would definitely suit this type of driving, but for everyday driving and for your first car, you want something reliable and affordable.
A big pro of buying a new car is they are generally considered safer. For example, features such as Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), and Auto Emergency Braking (AEB) are worth looking out for when looking at new cars. New cars also have better finance and warranty options – you’ll have the reassurance of this and a more affordable option for buying a brand-new vehicle.
However, this isn’t an option for everyone, and there are a lot of pros to buying a used car. They’re less expensive (so they can fit into most budgets), and you can take them home immediately, as there’s no waiting for the car to be built and/or delivered. You can also find ‘used’ cars which are only a few years old, so many still have a modern tech to improve safety or driving experience.