We all want the used car of our dreams but we have to be realistic when it comes to what we can afford. Before you decide on what car to buy take into consideration the following factors:
Before you decide on what car to buy take into consideration the following factors:
• What price do you expect to get for your current car whether through part-exchange or private sale?
• Factor in running costs for your next car such as fuel prices, repairs, tax and insurance.
• Do you need to take out finance and if so what can you afford?
What price to sell your current car for
Before deciding on a budget for your new car consider how much to sell your current car for. It is important to advertise it at the right price to ensure a quick sale. If you set it at a price that is too high you are at danger of not receiving any interest, yet too low a price buyers will be wary of it. So many factors will affect the value of your car such as its age, condition, mileage, added extras, colour and of course the make and model.
So where to start?
It’s a good idea to see what price similar cars are going for on the market. Our free online car valuation service provides you with all the information and data you need.
It is worth remembering that the method of how you sell your car will also affect its selling price. You are likely to get a better price if selling privately whereas if you part exchange via a dealer expect to sell at a lower price. Our online car valuation service will provide you with data for all aspects - private, part exchange and trade. Car price guides are a good place to start when getting your car valued. You can also search for similar equipped cars on the marketplace to see where yours compares in terms of price. If you are thinking of part exchanging your car, the next step is to visit a dealership to find out what they would offer you for your vehicle.
Once you have done your research then you can set your price. If you set your car at a price slightly over what you hope to get for it then it allows room for your potential buyer to haggle with you slightly, thus making them feel they have knocked you down on price. Take into account where your advert will appear in car search listings. Advertising under a round figure i.e listing at £14,995 can be advantageous over cars listed at say £15,000 as they are more likely to appear at the top and viewed first.
What car can you afford?
Once you have sold your current car or worked out how much you are likely to get for it, you need to work out how much your next car is likely to cost you. If you are buying a car on finance, work out your monthly payments to see what’s affordable for you. However don’t make the mistake of thinking a car is affordable just on its purchase price. Total up the price of the car along with costs for insurance, tax, fuel, repairs, service and warranty. It’s often the running costs of a car that can catch up with people so it is essential you consider all costs.
How to keep down fuel costs
Did you know that by changing driving habits you could save yourself approximately 8% of your fuels costs, an average of £50 - £100 a year. One way of keeping down fuel costs, is keeping your eye on the speedometer. It is claimed that driving between 50 and 60mph is the speed for best fuel economy on a car. Another factor to think about which can eat up your fuel is air conditioning. Save yourself those extra pounds by turning your air conditioning off and opening your windows instead. Motorists can also reduce fuel consumption by cutting down on sharp acceleration and braking. If your car has cruise control, then this is great to use on longer journeys to to combat this. Simply anticipating the traffic flow ahead of you can help you cut out unnecessary accelerating and braking thus reducing your consumption. One last tip - if you find yourself sitting in static traffic for longer than three minutes, then turn off your engine
Use our online fuel calculator to work out what your annual fuel costs would be.
Taking out finance
Taking out finance is always an option to make your new car affordable. Paying for a car upfront can be very costly so smaller monthly instalments could be an option for you. If you do go down this route then shop around for personal loans, you could save yourself some money. Haggle. Especially in today’s climate. Try and knock your seller down on their price and again you save yourself some money. Once you have taken into account all the above considerations you should be in the best position to make an informed decision on your next car.