Whether your new car is brand-new or just new to you, there are a few budget items you’ll want to consider before you buy, because there’s more to car ownership than make, model and financing.
If you don’t currently have a car, you’ll need to secure insurance and there are usually minimum coverage levels, especially if the car is financed. If you already have car insurance, call your insurance company in advance to find out how to switch the coverage to your new ride. Bonus: your insurance company will likely be able to provide you with quotes for different models of cars, so you can compare monthly premiums before you buy.
Even if you plan to handle some of the maintenance yourself, it’s important to have a trustworthy auto mechanic ready just in case. Ask friends and neighbors who they’ve used, and compare that to online reviews. You might also call ahead to get a quote for routine maintenance items, and compare prices. Also consider whether you’ll need a general mechanic (which might deliver more affordable prices), or one who specializes in the type of car you own (this can be key for specialty and performance vehicles).
In addition to having cash for a down payment, and accounting for monthly costs for your loan payment, fuel, and insurance, you’ll also want to put aside some cash for once-in-a-while costs, like your annual registration fee. And be sure to pad your emergency fund with some extra dollar to cover unexpected repairs.
By factoring all of these costs of ownership into your car buying plan (and budget), you can save yourself lots of future automobile headaches! To learn more about how Xceed can help you with your car-buying journey, from low-rate loan options to discounted insurance, visit xfcu.org/mycar, or call 800.XFCU.222 (800.932.8222).