Monday, July 22, 2013

How To Purchase a Vehicle For Your Recent Graduate

Bentley Continental GT (II)
Bentley Continental GT (II) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Sooner or later, our kids will grow up and leave the nest.  (Some later rather than sooner)  Before they do, we want to make sure that they have the right vehicle to get them where they need to go.  We want something with great gas mileage, has plenty of room for stuff, is built like a tank, is cheap to insure, is easy to maintain and has a solid history of never breaking down, ever.  Basically, the perfect car.  And all this for as little money as possible.

Unfortunately, the reality is we all have to compromise.  However, there are ways we can come closer to that perfect vehicle than you would think.  Doing a little homework can go a long way.  Take a top down approach.  

Find out which vehicle types are cheapest to insure in your area. Sedans, SUV's, trucks, coupes, etc..  You can call your local insurance agent for this information.  Next, from this list, find out which car manufacturers have the best service history in this vehicle class.  You can get these statistics from many different places on the internet.  Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book are just two of these sites.  
man on computer 03 copy
(Photo credit: Robin Hutton)

Once you have narrowed down your list to a particular vehicle make and model, time to go shopping.  This is a step where you can save a lot of time using the internet as well.  Websites like Cargurus and Carsforsale are good places to start.  These sites will help you get an idea of what prices are in your area and what year range fits your budget.  Pick out a few vehicles that look promising.  

Now that you have your short list, be sure to check out the dealer that has listed the vehicle.  Read online reviews, look at their websites and visit their social media sites to see how their customer relationships really are.  Finally, call the dealers to check on the vehicles you picked, make sure they are still available and make appointments to see them.

When you go to look at the vehicles either bring a mechanic with you or have them checked out by a local shop.  Ask to see vehicle history report or get them yourself.  If everything checks out then it is time to talk turkey with the dealer who has the vehicle you want.  One thing we always recommend but few people do is purchase an extended vehicle warranty.  Remember, even with your and the dealers best efforts, these are used vehicles that can have problems.  Most dealerships offer them and many times you can include the warranty in the financing.  Negotiate a price and financing option that is suitable for the vehicle and job done.
Car Key
Car Key (Photo credit: mynameisharsha)
A few things that will help in this process.  Keep your child included in this process.  Let them have some input in the decision making process.  Also as a personal recommendations, make the child financially responsible in some way.  Whether they pay for half or the insurance or whatever.  They will tend to be much more careful with there shiny new vehicle if they are on the hook for it.
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment