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What to ask before buying a car

Nov 25 2014 09:22
ADVERTORIAL:

Cape Town - Buying a car never loses its thrill. It’s even more exciting if it’s your first. Consider some important issues before you hand over your money.

How will you pay?

Work out what you can afford. Look at your budget to see how much you'll spend on repayments. Repayments aren’t the only costs to worry about.

Other costs to consider:

- Car insurance: Shop around for the best deal. Many insurance packages include extras such as roadside assistance. Work out if you need them when choosing.

- Fuel: Your fuel bill can become expensive so consider the fuel type and the car’s fuel efficiency when you’re deciding.

- Licence fees: A yearly cost of a few hundred rand.

- Maintenance costs: If you don’t have a motor plan, budget for regular services, as well as less regular costs such as new tyres and wheel balancing.

If you’re not paying cash you’ll need to get credit, which is offered by car dealerships and banks. Vehicle finance means that the car is only yours after your last repayment. It’s also more difficult to finance a vehicle older than 10 years. If you choose a personal loan to pay for the car, it will be yours immediately.

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Be careful when buying online: always view the car during the day, try to take someone with you when you do and make sure you get the vehicle’s documentation before you pay.
 
Used-car checklist

Here are some of the key questions you need to ask when buying a used car:

- If buying from a dealer, is it reputable and does it belong to the Motor Industries Federation (MIF)?
- Are there any warrantees and guarantees still available on the car and will this transfer on change of ownership?
- Is it being sold for a fair price? (Use the internet to do some research)
- Is there an authentic service history available that can be verified?  
- Has the vehicle been in any accidents?
- What is the mileage, and is the odometer reading correct and verifiable?
- Is there a mechanical report on the car? (If not, consider doing one before the transaction is concluded.)
- Are there signs of oil leaks and rust?
- Are there dashboard cracks? (This could indicate that the car has been standing in the sun, and might mean that the other rubbers – such as window rubbers – are also damaged.)

* This story was sponsored by Capitec.

capitec  |  budget  |  vehicle finance
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