Landing your first job is an exciting milestone worth celebrating. And if you are planning on getting your hands on a set of wheels to make commuting to work or anywhere easier, you may be feeling slightly scared, overwhelmed, and wondering if this is a smart purchase. In this article, we will take a look at the reasons to consider buying a car, how you can afford your first car and some of the dos and don’ts regarding your first car purchase.
The Purchase Itself, Is It Worth It?
Besides having more options than one, the public transport sector in South Africa is helpful to some degree. Not everyone is able to gain access to public transport at all times of the day and night, and e-hailing services tend to get expensive with time. If you are able to afford a car. It is often recommended that you buy one for your own convenience, because life happens. However, it is important to factor in that having a car requires maintenance (financially mostly), so you will need to be prepared. Here’s how you can ensure you afford a car while juggling your first job too.
Research, And Research Some More
It is rare to find a shortage of car makes and types, so do not worry about not finding the right car for you. Research will help you decipher which models are affordable according to your budget, what will be needed to maintain the type of cars you are looking for, as well as offer perspective from other drivers who own the same car you are considering. Read reviews from experts as well as everyday users and drivers of the car to get a clear sense of what to expect.
Get Pre-Approved If You Can
Most people want to buy a car without knowing exactly how much money they have at their disposal. So, try to get pre-approved for vehicle finance before even shopping for a car. If you are working your first job, you may be fresh out of varsity and just graduated, which means you may not have built up a credit profile or history. Worry not; financial services providers such as WesBank offer packages such as graduate finance which helps you secure finance for your car without having to worry about having a credit history. Yes, it is important to have a credit profile when considering some kind of credit or financial assistance, but most financial services providers that work to help you secure assets like cars will help you build your credit profile while offering you convenient lending packages.
Shop Within Budget
We cannot stress how important it is to get a sense of how much your car is going to cost even after leaving the dealership. Besides the vehicle or graduate finance premium you will be paying, you need to get an understanding of how much your car costs to maintain. Find out the value of the fuel your car uses, research which mechanics are able to fix your car in case you need to and what their price ranges are, and, if possible, calculate how much insurance you will need to pay.
The Ways Of A Driver
Driving for the first time can be intimidating, but with enough practice and proper awareness of the road and those around you, it can be a safe and fun experience. Let’s take a look at some of the requirements needed from a driver in order to keep being on the road safely:
Physically: A driver must be able to see and hear clearly, synthesise different types of information right away, and act quickly and decisively in case of an emergency or when needed to avoid accidents. When you optimise your fitness, you improve your concentration skills, stamina and fatigue resistance and thereby might be enhancing your safety on the road.
When In The Car: It is important that as a driver, you should accelerate slowly, and brake gently. This helps you manage what could potentially happen to the car or you if you make any hasty decisions. You also have to consider the passengers in your car if you have any.
On The Road: As a first-time, full-time driver, you may find that you get ‘tired’ of the same brake, clutch, accelerate, slow down routine. Fact is, you need to treat every driving experience like your first so that you stay safe and vigilant. Remember to have your hands on the steering wheel always, as this keeps you in control of the car at all times.
Think For The Next Driver: When you are on the road, it is encouraged that you imagine the people driving around you as though they are a little less safe than you and need you to be the safest. This mindset promotes having vigilant drivers because everyone will be driving to ensure they don’t put the next person or themselves in harm’s way.
Always Insure Your Car
As a first-time car owner, you may feel overwhelmed by driving regularly. And looking at the alarming road accident statistics in South Africa, you may be wondering how to navigate the road with your new baby and stay safe. Car sales dealerships such as InspectaCar also provide tips on road safety, especially when navigating South African roads, so ensure you familiarise yourself with them. For those unexpected rainy days, however, nothing beats having insurance. Make sure that you find an insurance package as soon as you sign the papers for your car so that you can be covered in case of an unexpected financial hurdle. Remember, just like searching for your car, make sure you do a lot of research with your insurance before committing.
Final Thoughts, Extra Tip
Car buying experts say that you should consider the period when buying a car. It is recommended that you purchase a car at the end of the year, as many car dealerships are running festive promotions in an effort to wrap things up on a high. There are many ways you can get the car of your current dreams and budget, so make sure you make the right choices for you. See you on the road.