First-Time Car Buyers: Tips & Advice to Choose the Right Car

First-Time Car Buyers: Tips & Advice to Choose the Right Car

Buying Your First Car Should Be Fun, We'll Show You How

If you're a first-time car buyer, we want your shopping experience to be fun; that's why we've compiled some helpful tips. Here at Great Lakes Superstore, we want every first-time car buyer to make a well-informed purchase decision -- and get a great price while doing so!

Are you looking for tips for a first-time car buyer?

Let's review some of our favorite tips for first-time used car buyers like you. In this article we'll cover:

  1. Determining your budget
  2. Deciding how you will pay for your car
  3. Compiling a list of features you need and want in a car
  4. Researching car models that fit your needs and budget
  5. Narrowing down your search to a few models to explore further
  6. Reading reviews of each model you are considering
  7. Shopping and comparing car prices
  8. Test driving the vehicles that made your final list

Determine a Realistic Budget

Are you looking to finance or lease your first car? Either way, you'll want to determine how much money you are willing and able to spend on your first car. Keep in mind additional car ownership costs such as insurance, gas and maintenance when weighing your budget and vehicle options. If you are shopping on a tighter budget, then you consider shopping cars under $10K here at Great Lakes Superstore.

Decide How You Will Pay for Your Car

Unless you are paying cash for your car, you'll be seeking financing or will possibly lease it. If you plan to take out a used car loan, determine how much money you can comfortably provide as a down payment before you apply for financing.

If you are seeking a car loan and you have less-than-perfect credit, the finance staff at Great Lakes Superstore are here to assist you.

Create a List of Features You Need & Want in a Car

What type of driving will you be doing with your first car? Is the vehicle for driving around town or commuting on the highway? What is more important to you, fuel efficiency or capability? Are you seeking all-wheel drive (AWD) for driving on slick roads, or will front-wheel drive (FWD) or rear-wheel drive (RWD) suit you fine? Do you plan on transporting lots of cargo or passengers frequently?

These are all important questions to ask as you shop for your first car.

Selecting a fairly practical, dependable, and fuel-efficient vehicle is always a smart choice, especially if it is your first time buying a car.

Research Car Models That Fit Your Needs & Budget

Now that you have figured out what your first car may look like and how you will pay for it, next comes the fun part: car shopping! Depending on the type of vehicle and your budget, you may still have many cars, SUVs or pickup trucks to choose from, so start researching the offerings from various automakers that are similar to one another, whether that be a compact car, mid-size SUV or full-size truck.

Narrow Down Your Options

Comparing many different vehicle models can be overwhelming; that is why it is important to narrow down your options to a few vehicles or models as soon as you can. Then, compare the remaining autos to one another more rigorously to determine which may be the best fit for your lifestyle, preferences, needs and budget.

Consider aspects like features and trims when you compare two different car models or two vehicles of the same model to one another. One model's base trim may vary greatly compared to a fully-loaded version of the same model, let alone a completely different make of vehicle.

Read Reviews of the Cars You Are Considering

As part of your research before any test drives, consider what both automotive publications and owners say about the cars, SUVs or pickups that you are considering. A detailed review of each car or a comparison article, including multiple cars you are shopping, can be immensely helpful in your car search.

Owner reviews can also tell you plenty about what drivers like and don't like about their cars, which can be invaluable in further narrowing down your car search options.

Shop & Compare Car Prices

Similar cars of the same model year and mileage may have significantly different prices based on various factors, like the cost of ownership, perceived reliability and quality and the overall demand for the model, whether new or used. Of course, the dealership and your local market can also lead to price differences -- even for nearly identical cars.

Here at Great Lakes Superstore, we always offer highly competitive pricing on our used cars for sale! We encourage you to begin your car search via our website, where you can shop by price, make, model, body style, mileage and much more.

Test Drive Vehicles That Made the Final Cut

A test drive can be even more informative in your first-time car buying decision than merely researching vehicles online. A car that looks like the best option online may not drive as well or be as comfortable as another car model you are considering.

The test drive is the all-important factor in any car-buying decision, no matter if it is your first purchase or you have bought many cars over the years. A proper test drive includes the on-road experience as well as exploring the interior, features and overall condition while the vehicle is parked.

Shop for Your First Car near Columbus, OH, Now

The Great Lakes Superstore dealerships of Ohio welcome Columbus area first-time car buyers to shop and explore our stellar selection of quality pre-owned vehicles for sale at our multiple locations. Ohio motorists seeking a used Kia car, crossover or SUV can always count on our Kia dealership in Columbus for an array of quality options.

With our convenient and competitive financing options, first-time car buyers can enjoy a stress-free and fun shopping and buying experience here. We invite you to get pre-approved for auto loans online.

You can also contact our team to learn about any lease options that may apply to the vehicle you want to drive.