Car Buying Guide – New vs Used

With lockdown gradually easing, many people are considering upgrading their car. Investing in a new car is likely to be your second most expensive purchase after your house. Therefore it is only natural you should take the time to ensure you are making the right investment. 

Is it a good time to buy a new car?

Many dealerships will have excess stock they will be desperate to sell – therefore it could be an excellent time to secure a competitive deal on a new car. In turn, this will also likely create a boom in the second hand car market.

What are the pros and cons of buying a brand new car?

For many people purchasing a new car is an exciting luxury. If offers you the chance to spec the car exactly how your want it, from the optional arm rest to choosing colour of the interior. The car will boast the latest number plate and (should!) arrive in perfect condition. Another benefit is the warranty which is now commonly up to 5 or even 7 years with many new cars. This will naturally give you added peace of mind. 

On the other hand, the perks inevitably come at a cost and you will be paying a premium in the first place. In addition, the new cars value is likely to quickly deteriorate over the first few years. Even if you finance the car, you will still pay for the its loss of value. Whilst rates of price deterioration will generally slow as the car gets older, the damage to your wallet will have already been done!  

What are the pros and cons of buying a used car?

The used car market continues to grow and whether you are after a classic, or newer model, there is plenty of choice available. People are upgrading cars more frequently as a result of finance deals; and consequently more second hand cars hit the market. And as more used cars become available, the better the deals become. 

Most of the best and most cost effective deals can be found on ‘nearly used’ cars. These are cars typically between 1 and 3 years old. Nearly new cars should still come decent warranty for you peace of mind. Moreover these nearly new cars will be much cheaper to buy in the first place, including on finance. Overall, considering a nearly new car is often an excellent compromise. You will experience that desirable new car feel – but for much better deal than a brand new equivalent.    

If you are buying a second hand car from a private seller there is of course the added risk of the cars reliability and underlying condition. However, as long as you do all of your checks, you should not let this deter you. 

Test Drive

Whether brand new or used, we recommend always taking the car for a test drive. This will give you a true feeling for the car and allow you to find your comfort levels. It is an opportunity to test everything you can. This includes seat-belts, radio, clutch and steering balance. When you get an opportunity, do an emergency stop on an empty road to double-check the brakes.  Even basic things such as testing the windows and seat levels shouldn’t be forgotten. Hopefully there won’t be any issues, but if there are, negotiate or request the problem is fixed before you buy!

Agreeing a deal

You are likely to face pressure from a pushy salesman trying to get a deal through quickly. Remember that there will always be another car and there will always be another ‘amazing deal’! Don’t be pressured into putting down a deposit until you are 100% satisfied with the deal. Always negotiate, if there is an extra you would like then don’t be afraid to ask for it! Rest assured, the salesman will have heard it before.

Finally, if you have a personalised number plate, don’t forget to submit the paper work to the DVLA as soon as possible.

Time to relax and enjoy you new car!

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