So you’re looking to buy a car, but the process can be intimidating and even scary. This is especially true if you’ve never made a purchase of this size. Car prices average anywhere between $15,000 and $31,000, and it’s enormously helpful to try and understand the options and processes involved so that you can get the best deal possible. Here’s a quick overview of some things you should know and account for when purchasing a new car.
Typically, there are two main options for financing a car: direct loans or dealership financing. In direct loans, which you get from a bank or other financing company, you can compare offers from several lenders and get the financing terms up front, before you accept a deal. With dealership financing, you have the advantage of convenience—financing is done right on the spot when you buy the car, you may have more options available due to the dealer’s relationships with financers, and you can take advantage of special programs. With BlueSky Auto finance, there is a third option. BlueSky’s unique auto lending platform is integrated with lenders that provide direct auto financing as well as a network of auto dealers that offer bad credit, car loans giving you the best choices of the first of the two options.
What can you afford?
Be sure to put together a spending plan, so you are certain you’ll be able to afford the monthly payments for your new vehicle. This is an important step, as when you sit down with a financer, you can often have your loan terms broken down into a monthly payment—this way, you’ll have already determined what you can handle so you know you won’t end up missing payments, damaging your credit rating, and worst of all, losing your vehicle. Don’t forget to account for your monthly auto insurance rating in your expenses!
Your financer will likely ask you for some information that might seem scary at first, including your social security number, previous addresses, current and previous employers, total income (and from where the income originates), and other financial information. This is standard, and is because the financer will seek to obtain a credit report to reassure them that you’ll meet your obligations. Even though providing this detail can be frightening, you shouldn’t hesitate to provide it to a reputable financing agency.
Buying vs. Leasing
For lower payments, leasing might be an option. You’ll want to make sure, however, that you understand all the terms. There could be hidden costs at the beginning and end of the lease, and restrictive mileage limits. In addition, you’ll be responsible for keeping the vehicle in pristine condition or you will pay a penalty at the lease end. However, leases can yield lower monthly payments than buying a vehicle outright, and many leases offer the option to finance the remainder of the vehicle costs at the lease’s end.
If your credit rating is not ideal, you may have some difficulty obtaining a loan or financing. In this case, seeking a co-signer might be to your advantage. A co-signer is a sort of partner in the loan who agrees to take on responsibility should you miss a payment. Often, a family member with a good credit score can serve this purpose.
Finally, make sure to do your research, look at all your options, know where your credit rating stands, and read up on federal and state laws before going in, and you’ll find that the process isn’t quite as scary.