The price sticker on a car is usually a car buyerâ€™s main concern. However, if you do some deeper research, you will find that there are a number of additional costs that you need to take into consideration as well. Don’t just look at the price. Factor in the running and maintenance costs before you make a decision on whether you can afford to buy a car. As such, your budget should create a provision for the most unfortunateÂ situations when you are buying a car.
Some of the costs that you need to take into consideration other than the price include the following:
Uncle Sam takes his cut, but it’s not only when you make your purchase. Sales taxes add to the initial cost of your car, andÂ there are registration fees and inspection fees that need to be paid every year.
These vary from state to state and can be expensive. Check the cost to keep your car on the road, and make sure you can afford it every year.
Depending on your state, the car you want to buy, and your driving record, insurance can take a big bite out of your budget.
It’s best to ask your insurance company what your rate will be on a specific car before you commit. Have your top picks ready so you can see how much each will cost to insure.
Once you’ve decided on a car, shop around to be sure the insurance company you’ve been with for years is still the right one for you. Periodically check your rates, even after you’ve made your purchase, to ensure that there aren’t better offersÂ elsewhere.
Be sure to draw up a budget that allows for the variation in fuel prices. It is normal for global crude oil prices to fluctuate and this has a direct bearing on how much you will pay at the fuel pump. This will help you avoid trading in your car when the fuel prices spike.
You should ensure that your car is well maintained throughout its lifespan. This will help keep the fuel consumption within reasonable limits. Note that after a couple of years, the fuel consumption of your car will be marginally higher because of the normal wear and tear on the moving parts inside the engine.
Before buying a car, you should get an ideaÂ on the costs of maintenance. Even when the car is brand new, you may have an accident or shred your tires by driving over a surface that disagrees with your tires damaging them beyond repair. This is another reason it is good to have an idea of the maintenance costs.
Another tip: You should not wait until small problems develop into big ones. Sticking to the recommended maintenance schedule enables you to incur minimal costs on maintenance and repairs. It also keeps your car in good running condition throughout.
Keep these tips handy when you’re ready to buy, and youâ€™ll be able to calculate the full financial impact of your purchase.