Buying a second-hand car
Buying a new car is not always an easy decision to make, even if all of the signs showing you that you need a new set of wheels are there. You start questioning everything and debating with yourself about whether you can truly justify buying a new car. After all, your current car still helps you navigate from point a to point b.
Consider your needs
But the biggest question to ask is, does your current vehicle still fulfill all of your needs? Think about it; you bought your current car before you had a big family, and now have the challenge of fitting everyone together. Or what if your current car is costing you so much more on repairs and maintenance than you previously did; can you really afford to spend more money on it? Perhaps, you’ve moved into the city, and your big car makes it tricky to navigate around the narrow city roads, so you’re thinking that a small car wouldn’t be a bad idea. All of these need to be factored into your decision.
It’s not a secret that life evolves and things change, and so do your needs. In the article below, we take a look at the benefits of upgrading, what to check when buying a new car or a used car and when it makes sense to upgrade.
How do you benefit from upgrading your car?
For starters, you will be getting a brand new car or a new model of a used car. Everyone gets a thrill out of owning something new, no matter how big or small. It gives us the satisfaction that we’re active in our lives instead of being idle bystanders.
New cars or new models come with the latest technology and the latest features, which offer entertainment and practical factors such as automatic emergency braking. The prospect of owning a car that can perform these safety features can be both pretty thrilling and comforting knowing that you’re taken care of when you drive the car.
Reliability is an important added benefit to upgrading a new car. What is the criteria of a reliable car when it comes to a used car? There isn’t a set standard of what reliability is; however, a car that’s reliable is in a good condition and can drive around without experiencing unplanned breakdowns. It also will require normal repairs, maintenance and servicing. Before you buy a used car, you would have already done your research to learn about its condition. So, you would have assessed its reliability before signing on a dotted line.
Versatility is another benefit. When your circumstances change, you want a versatile vehicle that can change with you. Moving into the city with a heavy-duty SUV can work against you, especially if your work office is five minutes away from where you live, and you also have limited chances of driving on rugged terrain. In this case, it would make sense to go for a car that’s perfect for city driving and occasional rough road drives.
When should you upgrade your car?
The process of getting a new car can be a lot to handle; there’s so much that goes into it and so many documents to put together and sign. But the final results will make this process worth it. With that being said, below you’ll find a few indications that you should get an upgrade.
When your lifestyle has changed
Lifestyle changes require that you tweak your resources and tools that you use on a day to day basis. A car is an example of such a “tool”. There’s no point in holding on to a car that no longer meets your needs no matter what sentimental value it offers you. It could be your first car or somebody close to you bought it for you or you have just finished paying it off, if it’s not serving your needs, it’s time to bid it farewell and get a new one that will make your life easier.
When your warranty has expired
Having a warranty cover can make you feel secure about frequently driving your car around. It makes you feel confident that whatever mechanical problems you run into, you’ll be able to solve it swiftly by simply calling your car insurance company. Usually, a car warranty covers anything from gearbox problems to engine problems, steering issues, fuel and electronic systems, etc. Unfortunately, when your warranty is running out or already has expired, you don’t have that safety net.
This means that whatever job needs to be done after the expiration will be charged fully on your pockets. Repairs and maintenance can be more frequent and more expensive than before. A simple wear and tear, or dent, could be more costly than usual. Upgrading may just be the best option for you and your pockets.
When you can no longer afford it
Affordability can be a variety of things. It could be that you can no longer afford to pay for your instalments, or as mentioned above, your repairs and maintenance have become too costly for you. In this case, you may have to downgrade to a new car that you will be able to afford. Alternatively, you can look into buying a second-hand car that’s more affordable. There’s no shame in living within your means, particularly when your circumstances change. It sure would be a pain point to let go of a car you love for another car.
The good news is that the new models of small cars offer more today than they probably did when you bought your car. While it is a downgrade, it could also be an upgrade in terms of technology and looks. So, in the end, it could turn out to be the best second-hand car to buy in South Africa, and you will be delighted with the result.
You can also use the trade-in option in your favour. Talk to a car dealer and analyse your options. If your negotiation goes well, you can trade-in your old car and get a new one.
When you have financial options available to you
Again, finances are a big factor to consider when you’re thinking about getting a new vehicle. If you’re still paying off your current car, it might seem like a premature move to buy a new car. But if you have financial options available to you, it doesn’t hurt to use the opportunity. Maybe you got a new job that pays more, or you got a promotion which involves a good cash injection, enough to have you go after your dream car.
Upgrading should not be taken lightly; it’s a decision that takes some thinking before you can sign any paperwork. You simply need to assess your reasons, consider the benefits, and know what to check for before buying a car, then you’re good to go.