In 2022, it’s confusing if you need a car. I keep asking myself, How can I know if we should buy new or used? Are you in the market for a new car? As you’ve found by looking, prices have risen and inventory has gotten smaller. I want to get the best car for my dollar, so let’s see what we can learn to help make an informed decision.
Our last car purchase was a used car. We don’t usually buy used cars, but we were given a small insurance payment when my husband was hit by another car. We found a used car at that low price and drove it for over 5 years. There were multiple repairs needed over those years, so it wasn’t a great value and we sold it. Now we own only 1 car and it’s 11 years old. Because it’s a Honda, we’ve had only one repair during that time.
We would like to get another Honda, but there aren’t many available new cars in our area. We will have to drive a longer distance to find a model that we like. There are three choices when making a car purchase: new, used, or certified pre-owned.
You may visit a used-car lot, search the for-sale ads, or buy from a relative or friend. When buying a certified pre-owned car, it’s better to purchase through a manufacturer’s sponsored program. Buying new gives you extended warranties, the knowledge that no one else has driven the car and no damage has been done, and that new car smell. Some drivers prefer to lease a car, but leasing is not a great financial decision. It can be the most expensive way to drive.
Before you make a purchase it’s better to investigate what type of financing you will need. Some people pay cash, but most need a loan. The dealer will offer financing, but go ahead and shop around for the best deals. If you plan to get a 4 year loan, do the math and see that you don’t finance for more than 10-15% of your monthly income.
If you are paying a higher percentage per month you’re probably spending too much for your car. It’s always better to live within our means, whether we’re buying a car, a house, or anything else.
If getting a hybrid or all electric vehicle is important to you, a new model will offer you all the bells and whistles. These tend to improve more every year, so do a little more research to see what high-tech specs impress you most. While you’re looking, invite the kids to get involved in the car search by playing some fun car computer games.
New cars always cost more to insure, too. Getting amazing gas mileage with a hybrid could help balance the higher car payment. There are so many things to consider and a car buyer needs to weigh all the pros and cons.
Inflation has caused a hike in new and used cars. There is a problem with used car availability so that also pushes the prices higher. Some experts believe that car prices will improve by the end of the year or early in 2023. If our Honda keeps driving, we’ll probably wait until then to make our next car purchase.
@2022, copyright Lisa Ehrman