When you buy a new car, it’s a usually substantial investment. The average cost of a new car in the United States, for example, is around $33,000. That price tag obviously doesn’t include any additional features or upgrades. If you’re buying a brand new car, then you know that there are plenty of expenses that come with it.
Taxes and registration fees are just the beginning of what you might expect to pay as an owner of this new vehicle. There are also insurance premiums and fuel costs that you probably aren’t anticipating at this stage in your life. Fortunately, there are ways to get more value out of your car investment and these tips can help:
Check the Resale Value Before You Buy
Before you sign on the dotted line and hand over a big chunk of cash to purchase your next vehicle, you should check the resale value. This is the amount you can expect to get back from the car once you’ve reached the end of its lifecycle, whether that is a few years or 10 years down the road.
The resale value of a car has a significant impact on its cost of ownership over the long run, so you definitely want to consider this factor before making a decision. If you are planning to use your Ford Ranger to earn a living, such as those who drive for Lyft or Uber, the resale value may have a lesser impact on your decision since you will likely be making a profit on the vehicle, regardless of its residual value.
Avoid Extended Warranties
The majority of car dealers will try to sell you an extended warranty when you buy a new car. This is an insurance policy that covers the potential repairs and maintenance costs due to breakdown or damage for a set period of time, usually three to five years. While extended warranty policies can be helpful in certain situations, they’re usually overpriced and are hardly ever worth the money.
Because new cars already come with a manufacturer’s warranty, and you can purchase a separate warranty from an outside company, you’re already covered for a significant amount of time. This is especially true if you buy a car with a good track record for longevity and reliability.
Depending on your driving habits, routine maintenance, and other factors, your car may or may not break down in the first year or two. If you don’t really know what you’re doing, it can be hard to tell if your car needs repairs, and a good mechanic will probably tell you not to worry about it since they’ll fix it for free under the warranty.
Be Selective With Add-ons
If you’re purchasing a brand new car, you may be offered additional add-ons. These could include items such as a heated steering wheel, remote start, parking assistance, child-friendly tech, etc. For the most part, you don’t want to purchase add-ons that are only temporary, such as remote start or heated steering wheels.
Though these features may be nice to have, they will probably wear out within a few years and you’ll have to pay to replace them. Instead, choose accessories that are built to last, such as parking assistance sensors or special features for kids. In the long run, these add-ons will be worth the investment, especially if you have children who will be in the car with you frequently.
Utilize Your Warranty
A new car comes with a warranty, and this is essentially an insurance policy to protect you against costly repairs due to manufacturing defects. The engine, transmission, and other major components will likely be covered under this contract, but make sure that you read the fine print to familiarize yourself with the details.
If you notice something going wrong with your car that could potentially be covered by the warranty, take it in to be looked at. It’s not worth risking your safety or driving with a broken part because you don’t have the money to pay for repairs.
If you depend on your car often and it breaks down frequently, you may want to consider purchasing an extended warranty to give yourself additional peace of mind. However, it’s worth noting that extended warranties are typically overpriced and aren’t worth the money.
Maintain Good Maintenance Practices
The better you take care of your car, the longer it will last. This includes regular oil changes, fluid flushes and inspections, tire rotations, and other routine maintenance practices. Since your car is still new, you won’t have to worry about any major issues popping up.
You can start slowly and work your way up until you’re comfortable with your skill level. As time goes on, however, you’ll notice that your car is running smoothly and more efficiently. This will also help you avoid paying expensive repair bills due to neglecting your car’s needs.
Consider a Hybrid Or Electric Vehicle
Hybrid and electric vehicles are growing in popularity due to their economic and efficient running patterns. They can save you money on fuel costs, insurance premiums, and general maintenance costs. Hybrids, for example, are known for having better fuel economy than comparable gas-only vehicles.
Depending on the model, you may save thousands in fuel costs over the course of a few years. They have better resale values too, which means you can get more for your original car investment when it’s time to sell. Because hybrids are also known for lasting longer than traditional vehicles, you will likely get more value out of your car investment. If you want to make the transition to an eco-friendly and sustainable car, hybrids and electric vehicles are your best bet.
A new car is a significant investment, but it can be worth it in the long run. You can get more value out of your car if you purchase a high-quality vehicle and maintain it well. When you buy a new car, keep these tips in mind so that you can maximize your investment and get the most out of your car.