Thursday, 5 September 2013

My First Car: My Car-Buying Tips

So, after about five million driving lessons, and at the age of 23, I finally passed my driving test. It was a great feeling - I could actually drive my new car. And by new I mean new to me. It was a used P reg baked bean coloured Vauxhall Corsa, and by used, I mean
well used. I was young and bought the car because a) it was small and b) it was orange and orange was my favourite colour. I can feel you tut tutting at me now. The car lasted a couple of months as it chug-chugged up to lights and other drivers, despite the obvious display of my 'P' plates, beeped and shouted at me through their hastily wound-down windows.

However, after a few years and a few cars, I am now a bit more mature and I definitely do not pick out a car based on the colour!

I'll be going back to work after Maternity Leave in a few weeks, and as such, I'll be needing a new car. I am not the font of all knowledge when it comes to choosing and caring for cars, but I have managed to pick up a few tips along the way - mainly through trial and error, I'll be honest.

So, below are a few of my key tips that I would use for purchasing a car.

* Do your research before you splash out - especially when it comes to affordability. Check out your insurance, road tax and whether the petrol type is suitable for you. You don't want to buy a car that you think is a bargain but then get stung on insurance. Read user reviews - Google is your best friend.

* Test drive the car. Sounds obvious, but you will want to see how it drives. Part of the problem with my first car was that I didn't test drive it - I just saw it and believed in the goodness of man and I was blinded by the snazziness of the colour. Test drive it for ten minutes or so and really get a feel for the car, try out some manoeuvres and listen out for any engine noises that don't sound quite right. If you can, take a friend in the know with you.

* Check the car paperwork. You should have the log book (V5), tax disc and MOT certificate. Check that the name and address details on the V5 match those of the seller.

* Shop Around. You don't have to buy the first car you see. Use the Internet to your advantage, compare prices. Print the details off and take them to dealerships - they may even price-match if you wanted a like-for-like vehicle.

* Don't be pressured into buying. It is so easy to feel like you have to buy the car because you have test driven and asked a load of questions. You don't have to buy on the day, you can always go home and think about it if you are unsure. There are plenty of cars for sale out there.

* One you've bought the car, join a recovery service. It's easy to forget this or view it as just another expense - but I have a membership and I feel so much safer on the road knowing that I do have help if I need it. The extra expense is worth your peace of mind.

* Take good care of your car. Again, when you have kids it can feel like all you want to do is get from a to b with the car, no time for worrying about the state of it. A little care can go a long way. Get it serviced regularly and check your tyres, keep them inflated. Look after the inside of the car too - clean the seat covers and mats - if you look after your car it will retain more value, and the ride will be much more pleasant for you too!

Good luck if you are thinking of buying a car. I'm on the look-out too, so I'll be taking my own advice!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the share! Also be sure to research the car dealer you are going to be using. There are tons of consumer reviews sites out there where you can read about others buying experiences with this dealer. I personally prefer salesmen who are more laid back and not pushy so that was definitely something I looked for when reading the reviews.


What do you think?

Disqus for Wife, Mum, Student Bum