When it comes to the big purchases in life, the car usually takes the number two spot as the most expensive thing we’ll ever own. For most people, the home comes first. You can’t make cars suddenly cheap. Those running costs will always play a big part in your finances. But you can ensure that it’s not eating up a lot more of your money than it should. From when you first get to when you say goodbye, let’s look at how you get a better deal from your motor.
Buy it better next time
If you have already bought a car, the chances are that you could have got a better deal on it. Most people don’t get as good a sale as they could have, simply put. Sometimes, reducing the cost of buying a car can be as simple as finding the timing. Dealers have been found to go lower on price in the middle of the week when fewer are buying cars. Just as they’re usually willing to make a better deal just before every new quarter, or the beginning of the next season. That’s because they have quarterly quotas to fill and if you catch them when the deadline is looming, they might be more willing to make an easy sale. That’s just one of the ways you can buy cars better.
Every car can be more efficient
How you buy a car isn’t the only way it impacts your finances, of course. Fuel is one of the most regular expenditures and you can save money on that, as well. Yes, you can save a lot on fuel by buying a much more efficient car. But if you don’t have an efficient car, you can still save. For one, how you drive impacts your car’s fuel consumption. Braking too hard and accelerating too hard both consume more fuel than transitioning smoothly. Meanwhile, letting the car idle for more than five seconds instead of just restarting the engine burns more fuel. Maintenance plays a big part, as well. You should get your spark plugs checked and changed more often to keep your car at its optimal fuel consumption rate.
Dents shouldn’t dent your finances
Taking better care of your car and noticing warning signs early are going to stop you from letting a minor problem turn into a major fault. But besides spending less on repairs, you should always ensure you have the money to spend on those repairs. If you suffer a major malfunction on the road, the costs of a repair can eat into your bank balance, leaving you at risk of getting into debt. Or they can have you taking unfavourable loans. Find out how much you’re likely to spend on repairs for the year and budget towards a car maintenance fund. That way you might not be saving much more money, but you’re ensuring that your car doesn’t hold the purse-strings.
Don’t automatically renew your insurance
Insurance is another one of the big regular costs and one that you have a lot more say over than you might imagine. Besides reading your contracts more thoroughly and putting more thought into what coverages you actually need, you should shop around more for different deals. Sites like Money Expert can lay your choices in front you a lot more transparently than insurance providers. Even if you’re sticking with the same provider, make sure you inquire as to what offers they have on before you renew. In most cases, the deal you first got is no longer the best one they offer.
Your chance to win your money back comes when it’s time to sell the car. Unfortunately, there’s nothing to do about the reality of depreciation. It’s going to happen. What you can do is impact how much of an effect it has on the value of the car. Besides keeping up with scheduled maintenance and keeping your logs, it’s all about finding balance. For instance, for the average car, it’s recommended you don’t spend any more than £250 on aesthetic maintenance. That money should go toward the more obvious flaws, too, like marks on the bumper as opposed to scratches on the alloys. Learning what you can DIY and what you need professionals for can help you cut those costs, too. Meaning you add value for less investment.
You could be saving potentially hundreds over the years with the tips above. More than that, you can make sure the car’s costs don’t make a deep impact in your finances when it could do you the most harm. Get serious about how you deal with car costs.