With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, life has turned upside down, and that includes car buying. Prior to the outbreak, the car purchasing process was simple – you could visit a few car dealerships in Las Vegas, test drive the cars you were interested in, negotiate the price, shake hands, and close the deal. But the household phrase “social distancing” has brought twists to it. Here are Handy Tips for Buying A Car During the COVID-19 Outbreak.
Furthermore, the shutdowns across the globe forced the dealers to endeavor something that they were putting off for ages: adapt technology and keep buyers first. As the car purchase is the second large investment of your life, it’s fine to have some sort of stress. However, this blog will escort you to trade in the car without jerking and avoiding risks.
Read on the blog as we’ve set down some handy tips for buying a car during the COVID-19 outbreak.
- Set aside your budget
This is a no-brainer; setting your budget will narrow down your choices. That means you’re simply going to test-drive the cars and lock the deal. In addition to this, calculate how much monthly expenditure you can afford for your car.
As a general principle, you should be investing only 10-20% of your monthly income. Therefore, include the same while considering your budget.
- Hand-pick – new or used
In the COVID world, consumers are leaning towards owning their own car. However, the constant question that arises on the route of being a car owner is whether to purchase a new car or a used one.
It is true that during the first few years of ownership of a new car, there will be the steepest decline in its value. However, in the case of a used one, at least you will not that big depreciation. However, you should think of expenses for maintaining its brake systems, engine issues, and many more. So, based on your budget, make a wise decision.
- Shop your car online
Car dealerships will be changed forever, all thanks to the noble virus! Instead of going door to door of the car dealerships, you can use the internet to shop for a car. There, you can compare the prices, different cars’ features, sizes, etc., as you do traditionally.
After looking through your choices, choose the top three cars that you’d like to take for a test drive. Afterwards, ask the car dealerships whether or not they provide cars for at-home test drives. Nowadays, they sanitize the car that you’d like to purchase, drop it at your place for a few days, and later on, solve your queries through a phone call.
- Look for an online loan
Those who don’t have enough money to pay for a car upfront take a car loan. Well, the COVID-19 pandemic has made this process also online. An added benefit; it will make your bargaining easier.
It’s easy to take a loan online. All you need to do is get the quotes from various lenders and compare their interest rates, monthly payments, fees, and down payments. Amongst all, pick the one that has the best offer. Remember to communicate through email so that you have everything in writing.
- Bargain the prices
As soon as you choose your car and put a lender on board, you should negotiate the car price with your car dealer. Always feel empowered to negotiate because buying at an unusual time doesn’t mean you’re at the mercy of the car dealership. If truth be told, many dealerships may be willing to agree to your negotiated price due to declining sales.
So, make your negotiating strategies well beforehand and lock your deal over a phone or zoom call. However, there might be some dealers who would say something over a phone call and something else when you visit the showroom. So, make sure that you’ve everything in writing.
Well, buying a car is easier than maintaining it during the pandemic if you follow the above tips. With rumours of lockdown in a few countries rising, you may forgive yourself for skipping maintenance of your car. But, doing this can cause your brand-new car permanent damage and an unwelcomed repair bill. So, here a few maintenance tips to keep your car in a good condition.
Tips to Maintain Your New Car:
- Drive your car at least once a week
Due to the pandemic and social distancing rules, the chances of your car sitting idly are high. But driving your car at regular intervals will help to keep it in a good condition. It keeps your battery charged, prevents the engine and other mechanicals from drying out, and avoids flat tires. Furthermore, there’s no standard rule of how often to take your car for a spin. However, experts recommend driving your car at least once a week.
- Park your car safely
This is another maintenance tip to allow your car to look brand new even after five years of its purchase. Always be mindful of your parking lot. If you park your new car on soft or wet grass, then dirt and moisture will enter your car’s undercarriage, which will lead to rusting. So, find a pavement or gravel for parking. Additionally, you should avoid parking your car under a hot sun; it will chip off its paint soon.
- Top off the gas tank
Topping off wards off the condensation from storing up inside the gas tank. Additionally, it also prevents gasoline fumes from turning into dangerous. So, keep your tank full, especially during such uncertain times. In addition to this, you can also use a fuel stabilizer to prolong your gasoline’s life and keep it away from degradation. Not to mention, always remember to sanitize your hands soon after refilling your tank as it can be accumulated with dirt.
- Cover your car when not in use
It happens with many of us and many times: you leave your car unused for a longer period and later find it necessary to get it serviced. To avoid this extra service, invest in a quality cover. Always make sure that it is the one made for your car model and type. For pickup trucks, a tonneau cover which protects the bed of your truck is a good investment. It will protect your car from harsh environmental elements. But remember two main things: do not put the cover on a dirty car as it may rub the paint and avoid using the cover when parked your car indoors.
- Wax and seal to guard the paint
You must already be aware of the fact that your car paint needs protection against scratches, bird droppings, and dirt accumulation. Such happenings are unstoppable; also damages that occurred due to such mishaps are irreversible. Therefore, you should wax and seal your car in order to protect its paint, if investing in-car cover is beyond your range. It will prolong the longevity of the paint, even in the face of dust and other contaminants.
- Persist with your normal maintenance schedule
Caring for your car and keeping it in good condition takes a little bit of effort. For some, the biggest hurdle might be to keep up with their normal maintenance schedule. Sometimes, it will go out of your mind, someday office meetings will disallow you to do that, and the list of excuses goes on. Also, nowadays, people think that as we are driving less, preventive maintenance isn’t required. But let me break that bubble; it’s more than important to continue changing the oil and check the car’s brakes at regular intervals.
So, these were a few tips for regular maintenance of your new car, which you should start following soon after its purchase. Furthermore, also do take some precautions during this ongoing pandemic like cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting your car to ensure all-around safety before hitting the road. You can even find a reliable mechanic and take expert advice on the same. Remember, no matter how expensive or advanced your new car is, it will require protection against viruses.