Graduating and moving forward

Spring is here, which means that graduation season isn’t far behind. Graduation means a change of pace and new responsibilities. Perhaps you or your loved one is graduating high school and heading to higher learning, or perhaps it’s a graduation from college and into the working world. Either way, having transportation is important.

What kind of car?

Everyone wants a safe and practical car. Graduates may have special requirements, depending on their job or other activities. For example, an SUV may be spacious, but a small hatchback may offer enough cargo space while being a little easier on the wallet. If you start with the primary consideration of whether or not the vehicle you’re looking at will dependably get you and your belongings around, then you can move on to other aspects, like price and age.

New or Used?

Do you buy a new car or a used car? Tough one, right? Here’s the thing: there’s no right answer. Each is good for different reasons.

For example, new cars can often be bought at periodically applied discounts called “incentives”, and also often include manufacturer’s warranties. Technological developments in safety and conveniences have accelerated over the years, and new cars may feature crash-avoidance technologies, advanced airbag configurations and driver conveniences that have only recently become available.

Used cars, however, may also offer buyers excellent value. Certified pre-owned vehicles, which are usually sold at dealerships, may cost a bit more, but may offer some optional, key benefits for the graduate, like free maintenance or free roadside assistance.

Ultimately, it may be best to buy “the car you want”, from the pool of ones you can afford. But no matter what you choose, it pays to do your homework and shop around. Websites that give excellent information on both new and used vehicles, like Kelley Blue Book, are a great place to start your research. Here’s a list of the top sites for researching cars.

Shopping Smart

Remember: Anyone can haggle, on any car purchase. And the first step in negotiating is knowing that you can walk away. Be ready to say no. Billionaire Richard Branson is credited with having said that “[Deals] are like buses. There’s always another one coming.”

It’s a great idea to get the financing for your purchase lined up before you ever arrive at the dealership. Some financial institutions, like RoadLoans, specialize in providing fast, easy financing for purchases that can be made at any dealership. With financing already taken care of, the buying process can be much more enjoyable.

Source:  Sonny Bynum