Buying a vehicle is a big decision and can be overwhelming if you aren’t
sure what to look for. A vehicle is more than just a lifeline that
connects you from place to place, it’s also a lengthy investment that
will be with you until you pay it off. As you begin shopping for your
next vehicle, there are a few factors to keep in mind.
Cost of Insurance
Depending on your state, different coverages may be required. Even if
you live in a state that only requires liability insurance, it is highly
recommended that you purchase the necessary coverage to ensure that you
and your vehicle are protected. Make, model, and age of a car can all
affect how high or low your insurance premium is and factors such as
whether your vehicle is imported, exported, new, or pre-owned can have
an impact on your rates. The actual cost of insurance will vary from one
vehicle to the next but maintaining contact with your insurance provider
throughout the purchase process will ensure that you don’t purchase a
vehicle that you can’t afford to insure.
Safety and Reliability Ratings
One of the most important factors to consider when shopping for a new or
used vehicle is the vehicle’s safety and reliability ratings. You want
to make sure that the car you’re buying can protect you and your
passengers. There are a variety of online tools that can be used to get
a sense of what the safety and reliability ratings are for any vehicle
that you’re considering. You should consider safety features such as
airbags, a rearview camera, brake assist, blind spot indicators, and
lane departure warnings, all of which make it easier to drive.
While getting a new vehicle is exciting, you will most likely sell it at
some point down the road. Whether you drive it for five years or ten
years, you should always consider how steeply the value is going to
decline. Certain makes of vehicles are considered more reliable in the
long-run than others and because of this, they hold their value longer.
Even though depreciating value is inevitable, purchasing a vehicle that
will have a higher resale value will be a better investment when it
comes to starting the vehicle purchase process over again.
Costs of Maintenance
Once you’ve purchased a car, you will want to keep it in good condition
to ensure it lasts for years to come. While all car buyers will have
maintenance costs, some types of cars come with more maintenance expenses than others. For example, foreign cars will always be more expensive to maintain
than their domestic counterparts because repair parts have to be
imported. Although a vehicle’s purchasing price might seem reasonable,
the cost of its maintenance should always be considered. Investing in an
extended warranty offered by the dealership or researching cars whose
manufacturers put special maintenance deals on them for the first couple
of years are other strategic ways to reduce future service and
Finally, you will want your car to be enjoyable to drive. Different
makes, models, and types of cars exist because not everyone’s
preferences are the same. Before heading to a dealership, brainstorm a
list of features that you are looking for in a future vehicle. Segment
the list into features that are non-negotiable, ones you would like to
avoid, and things that you would like to have, but are not a deal
breaker. We spend so much time driving and waiting in traffic that our
preferences and personal comfort cannot be completely forgone by price.
Keep these tips and factors in mind the next time you go car shopping so
that you find the best deal and vehicle for you.