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Car tips & advice | 05.04.2014 - 12:20

5 Tips to Make Car Shopping Less Painful

Aside from purchasing a house, one of the biggest investments that you will ever make is purchasing a car.

And since it does tend to cost a significant amount of money, we can certainly understand why you would want your car search process to be as quick and stress-free as possible.

And so, in order to help your car shopping experience to be fun instead of painful, we've got five failsafe shopping tips. Check these out below:

Establish a budget. It's really easy to go to a car dealership or to even look on a website like Craigslist and find yourself falling totally in love with a car that you can't really afford. So, order to make sure that you avoid the temptation of going into debt, it's important that you establish a budget. If you plan on purchasing a new vehicle and you'll need to get it financed, factor in how much you can pay each month when it comes to your note and your car insurance. If it's a used car, be realistic about how much of your money that you can spend in one lump sum.

Look online before going to a dealership. Here's a tip that can end up making the entire car shopping process a lot smoother for you: make a point to look online before actually going to a car dealership. The reason why we recommend this is so that you can extremely clear about the make and model that you want. That way, you won't find yourself getting quite so distracted as the car salesperson is talking to you about other (and usually far more expensive) cars that they have available.

Know your credit score. Something that many people fail to do while they're in the process of looking for a new car is being aware of what their credit score is. If you happen to be an individual who is planning to have your car financed, you can be absolutely certain that the loan company is going to check your credit history. Therefore, make sure that you're prepared ahead of time for the discussion that may follow the results.

Have a mechanic check it out. Say that as you're car shopping , you stop by a place like Honda Carland and you see a used Honda Accord that you really like. Even if they are offering a good deal and the exterior and interior of the car looks great, it's still a good idea to have your mechanic check it out. Remember, they are professionally-skilled in knowing how to detect engine issues and oftentimes, even body problems (such as a former car accident) too.

Look at more than one car before making a decision. Also, even if you do happen to see a car that you're totally interested in, our recommendation is that you look at between 3-5 more before making a final choice. By doing so, you may find a car for a cheaper price or one that has less gas mileage which will ultimately make it a better deal. For information on how to check out a car before purchasing it, visit Carfax.

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