Buying a car can be a stressful process in itself, but when you are having to decide between a new or used car, the process can be even more stressful. Both sides have pros and cons, and you need to look at your specific needs and budget when deciding what is best for you. Buying a new car offers you great financing options and the opportunity to have the latest in auto technology and safety features, and buying a used car will be easier on your budget and will offer you information on the model’s history (ex. recalls). When choosing between a new or used car, you need to ask yourself several questions so you can make the best decision for your circumstances.
What is your budget?
Before making any decisions, you need to determine your budget, and in your budget, you need to allocate funds for a downpayment, monthly car payment, car tags, and insurance. You should also note that new cars take a larger depreciation hit than used cars do, and used cars have lower rates for insurance and car tags. On the other hand, a new car will need fewer repairs than a used car which will save you money on maintenance and upkeep. Whether you buy a new or used car, you should try to have as large of a down payment as you can because this will lower your monthly car payment and save you interest in the long-run.
What will you be using the car for?
When determining if you want a new or used car, you should consider what you will be using the car for. For example, if you are using the vehicle for a teenage driver, you might want to purchase a used car in case the young driver has a wreck or backs into something. If you are looking for a new car to transport your family around town for practices and to vacation destinations, you might want to purchase a new car since your car will be getting plenty of mileage.
How long do you plan to keep this car?
If you’re planning to drive this car for 10+ years, you should probably consider a new car or used car with fairly low mileage. However, if you are looking for a car to only last you a few years before a move or while you pay off bills, you should consider purchasing a used car.
What is the warranty coverage?
No matter if you are considering a new or used car, you need to look at what the warranty covers. For new cars, most warranties are for a pre-determined amount of time or number of miles, and you should take that into consideration. For used cars, most warranties cover a shorter amount of times or fewer miles, and some warranties for used cars only cover certain aspects of maintenance and upkeep. It’s important to note what each warranty covers so you can make the best decision when purchasing a vehicle.
Are you able to perform car maintenance yourself?
If you are familiar with car repair and maintenance, you should purchase a used vehicle since you will have no trouble with the upkeep and any issues that arise. If you will have to have your car repaired by the dealership or repair shop anytime something breaks, you should consider purchasing a new car (or a used car with low mileage) so you aren’t constantly paying for repairs.
Choosing between a new and used car can be a tough decision, but when you take the time to look at your circumstances, you can make an informed decision. After looking at your budget, how you will use the car, and the involved maintenance, you will be able to make the right decision for you. There are advantages and disadvantages of either choice so it’s important to take the time to research your options and take your time when choosing.