Car Buying Tips

When it is time to buy a new vehicle, the process can feel overwhelming. Arriving to a dealership prepared is the number one way to get the best deal and take the stress out of car buying. Here are a few tips to consider before you go car shopping:

Have A Vehicle In Mind

  • Have a few examples of your ideal vehicle, including make and model and market value. Knowing the fair price of a vehicle when you are heading into a sale can prevent you from overpaying.

Get Preapproved for Financing

  • Call your bank ahead of time to inquire about being preapproved for an auto loan. Arriving at the dealership with a preapproved offer and, if possible, a check in your hand can allow you to avoid many of the hidden fees that are tacked onto many dealership's financing options. Dealerships sometimes offer rebates or low interest through their finance company. Both options are often not available on the same deal. Coming to the table with your own financing can allow you to take advantage of the vehicle rebates offered.

Consider GAP Insurance Needs

  • GAP insurance is a great option to protect your investment, should you have an accident. It covers the difference between what your insurance company will pay you for your claim and what you still owe the bank. This helps you to avoid a costly payment to the bank and allows you to purchase your next car without going in with any negative equity. When considering adding GAP insurance, consider the loan to value of the vehicle you are purchasing or if you are purchasing a brand-new vehicle. If you are tacking on a warranty, previous vehicle loan balances, or any other costly features onto your vehicle loan, chances are your loan may be more than your vehicle is worth and GAP insurance is a smart decision. In addition, if you are purchasing a brand-new vehicle, keep in mind that the value of a vehicle declines the most in the first year of ownership. With new vehicles, unless you put down a hefty down payment, many people owe more than their vehicle is worth at the end of the first year and should have considered GAP insurance at the time of purchase.

Consider Credit Life and Disability Insurance Needs

  • Credit Life and Disability insurance also offer great peace of mind should something unfortunate happen in your life. The stress of losing a loved one, or the loss of income due to disability, can have a major impact on the lives of your family. Adding these extra pieces of insurance help to cover the payments so that you or your family can continue to own the vehicle. When you are considering whether to purchase this extra insurance, take inventory of any other life or disability insurance you have and whether it will cover payments on the loan should something unfortunate happen.

Before you start the car buying process, reach out to your banker and see if they have any available loan deals that can save you even more money in addition to the above tips.

Visit our auto loans page to view our current vehicle loan offers and apply for a loan online.