What to think about before buying a car

Car buying advice
What to consider before buying a car

1. Why do you really want that car?

You can make up excuses to give your spouse/family/friends about buying a car if you don’t want to have to justify yourself to them, but make sure you understand your own motivation.

If you just want a new car because you’re really bored with your old one and you really, really like the look of that new Turbomeister Supersport GT, then that’s absolutely fine.  But don’t pretend it’s about fuel consumption or service costs.

Mid-life crisis? Fine! Current car too big/small/noisy/slow? That’s fine too! But pinpoint the key reason you are buying a car in the first place, and make sure your new car addresses that want or need (we’ll get to that shortly).

Why is this important?
Car dealers are professionals at selling you the car that they want you to buy, regardless of the car you actually want (especially if they don’t have the one you want in stock).

If you give them fake reasons for wanting a new Turbomeister Supersport GT, they’ll spend hours convincing you that you really need the Practicalo Familia Lux instead, because it does all those things better (and because they just happen to have one right here that they really need to get rid of).

And next thing you know, you’re driving a car you didn’t want because they made it sound like a great deal and you fell for their sales spiel. Yes, it will be economical and cheap to run, which is what you told everybody you wanted. But it wasn’t what you actually wanted, so you won’t enjoy it.

You should also read this:
Why does buying a car have to be so unfriendly?

Now you’ve got that straight, let’s talk about your budget.

Next page: How much can you really afford?

Stuart Masson

Stuart is the Editor of The Car Expert, which he founded in 2011, and our new sister site The Van Expert. Originally from Australia, Stuart has had a passion for cars and the car industry for over thirty years. He spent a decade in automotive retail, and now works tirelessly to help car buyers by providing independent and impartial advice.

1 Comment

  1. I’m not sure car sales people can manipulate people as easily as they used to do.
    With the internet, car owners are starting to be savy and know what they want.

    Budget might and should be the most important thing. How expensive is a car to run with depreciation/fuel/insurance/servicing. You will obviously wont find that on the internet as people would start panicking on how much they actually spend!

    Reply

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