Buying Your First Car?What an exciting time!
Finally the freedom to drive where you want, when you want.
Everyone remembers their first car as a milestone in their life. We will help you make sure you have the best experience ever!
Buying your first car must be approached with careful preparation. Follow these tips to help you find a suitable and safe car that fits your wants, needs and your budget.
1. Consider Your Lifestyle
Consider your daily activities when choosing your first car. Do you need a fuel-efficient car for your commute to work? Or lots of backseat space to hold the kids?
2. Make a Budget
The price of the car isn’t the only cost you need to consider. Think about fuel, insurance, parking, and maintenance. Determine a budget and consider payment options that work for you: are you paying cash, leasing or financing?
3. New or Used?
There are many pros and cons to buying either a new or pre-owned vehicle. A used car may be the cheaper option in the beginning. A new car will probably cost more up-front, but it will come with all the bells and whistles and may require less maintenance.
4. Dealer or Private Seller?
There are also pros and cons to both options. A dealership may be more expensive, but they will likely offer warranties, more detailed reports, add-ons and payment plans. A private seller may sell for cheaper, but won’t give you any warranty or guarantee.
5. Do Some Research
Search reviews from people who’ve used that vehicle. For an unbiased expert opinion, Consumer Reports tests vehicles to ensure they are safe, effective, reliable and fairly priced. Also check Transport Canada for any recall or defect notices. A good dealer will be able to provide this information for you.
6. Shop Around for Car Insurance
The cost of insurance can make or break the decision to buy one car over another. Details like where you live, your insurance history, your driving record and the car you choose all factor into calculating your insurance rate. Compare insurers and find the coverage you need at a rate that suits you before you commit to a specific vehicle.
7. Beware of Curbsiders
Curbsiders are unlicensed dealers who pose as private sellers, offering substandard vehicles for a deal usually “too good to be true”. These vehicles are usually in dire need of repair or have tampered odometers. Curbsiders will usually avoid meeting you at a fixed home or business address and try to sell in a hurry.
9. Prepare Other Questions
Prepare a list of any additional questions to ask the seller, like:
- What kind of gasoline does the car use?
- Does the stereo and climate control work?
- Is there warranty, and if so, what is covered?
10. Test Drive
Inspect the car yourself. Open all the doors, adjust all the seats, wind all the windows, and check if the lights, signals and wipers work. Take a thorough test drive on various roads at different speeds to get a real feel of how the car drives.
Looking for your first car? Ask DriveTimeOntario about how we can help. You can give us your requirements (budget, type of vehicle and more) and we will keep a look out for the perfect fit for you!