Buying your first car is a huge milestone, but it can be a difficult process if you don’t know what to look for. While you might have an idea of what colour car you’d like, it’s not really the most important thing to spend time thinking about. In this blog, we’ll give you some tips to help you make your car-buying journey as smooth as possible.

Understand how much you can spend

While you might love a sports car as your first car, if it’s out of your price range, you’ll have to set aside this dream for now. It’s important to work out exactly what you can afford comfortably and do some research to find out the types of cars that may be within this range. If your budget is particularly small, it’s best to look for second-hand cars rather than brand new vehicles. You also have the option of getting a car on finance, but this comes with risks as well as benefits.

Don’t forget about car insurance

You’re going to need car insurance as soon as you’ve bought your new car, so it’s important to factor these costs into your buying decision. While it is possible to find cheap car insurance, there are a lot of different factors that can affect the premium you pay each month. For example, more expensive cars may be dearer to insure, so even if you can afford an expensive car, think about whether you’ll also be able to afford your insurance payments.

Always test drive

Even if a car looks perfect, you never know how it will feel when being driven if you don’t give it a go first. Test driving is especially important if the car is a model you’ve never driven before or it’s second-hand. Some cars may be difficult to manoeuvre, especially if they’re big and you’re not used to them. Test driving can also reveal hidden issues, so pay attention to any unusual sounds.

Think about what you really need

Your first car should always meet your requirements for your current stage in life. If you don’t need a large car with lots of space in the boot, maybe go for something smaller that will save you money. However, if you know your family will need to be picked up from appointments or school, it can be worth investing in something more comfortable for your passengers. It’s also worth thinking about whether you need a four-wheel drive, which could be useful if you live in a very rural area.

Take someone with you

If you know nothing about cars and are going to check out some models, try to bring a friend or family member with you who knows a little more than you. They can help you to spot potential issues and ask the seller questions that will reveal more about the car’s condition. It’s easy to pick a car that will be wrong for you if you don’t know what you’re looking for, so make the most of the expertise of your loved ones.