In this Internet-driven age, purchasing a new or used car online is no longer novel but commonplace. For most, buying a car can be a tremendous financial burden. Uneducated car shoppers are easy prey for talented salesmen to make fat commissions. Knowing how to research the best new automobiles and dealerships will insure that buyers find their ideal car at a price they can live with.
Finding Cars for Sale Online is Easy, but Getting Cars Cheap is the Real Goal
Whenever one sets out to buy a vehicle, whether a motorcycle or an eighteen wheeler, a 40 year-old rust bucket or a shiny new Jaguar, he should fully research his options before making any substantial financial commitments. There are a lot of lemons out there, so the last step before purchasing any used car should be to give the car a full check-up by a reputable mechanic.
But before one can get to the end, she must know where to start. Turning on one’s computer and typing in related search terms will produce both good and bad results. But a more guided search will lead to better-suited results.
- Outline Required Automotive Specifications, Details, and Prices
One cannot expect to find or buy a vehicle that suits his needs if he doesn’t first determine what those needs are. Price range is usually the biggest factor and is not limited solely to the cost of the car — gas mileage, auto insurance, maintenance and service fees, and buyer-specific considerations (e.g., performance tires and chrome rims to handicap accessibility and childproof locks) all should be considered when calculating one’s maximum price. Other factors needing initial determination include: vehicle size and intended seating capacity, performance and practicability, safety features, extended warranties, body style, color, and whatever else may be important to the specific buyer.
- With Automotive Specifications in Mind, Review Independent Sources for Cars that Match
Knowing what features her car must have, one can then go online and let various websites do the work. But she should stay away from the automobile manufacturer websites until she has selected a few cars that seem right for her.
So which websites work best? There are several independent (at least, not tied to any specific manufacturers) and qualitative sites, including: NADAguides.com, Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, Autobytel.com, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Fueleconomy.gov, amongst a host of others. Many let buyers input their specific requirements and locate automobiles that meet those requirements.
- Shop Around
After the buyer experiments on these sites and determines what vehicles appear best-suited to his needs, only then should he begin a thorough search for the ideal car. One should always remember that with the wealth of choices available on the Internet, automobile purchasing, particularly in today’s economy, is a buyer’s market. So . . . compare, compare, and compare!
In addition to some of the above-named websites, Vehix.com, Autotrader.com, CarMax, Cars Online, and many others offer comparable vehicles at differentiating prices. Finding the best deal can be time consuming, but it may also save the would-be purchaser hundreds or even thousands of dollars. So, it is time well spent.
Auto Dealers and Purchasing a Car
Once the buyer has found her car at the price she demands, she is ready to purchase. If not purchasing online directly, the buyer can always print price quotations found thereon so as to use as ammunition against overzealous salespersons. Online sites allow purchasers to look for cars located near them. Therefore, buyers should not forget the test drive! This applies to new as well as used cars, since comfortability, blind spots, handling, horsepower, and other aspects need to be experienced in addition to researched.
Don’t Forget to get Car Insurance Quotes
Buyers should keep in mind that car insurance can vary greatly depending upon the vehicle selected. Car insurance quotes can be obtained through the websites of most insurers and some, such as Progressive.com, compare their quotes to that of other insurers.