How Much Car Can I Afford?

Posted by Rebecca Prince on December 2, 2016

How Much Car Can You Afford?

Have you ever seen those car commercials at Christmas time?  You know the ones… where the lucky teen (or adult) wakes up Christmas morning to find a new car parked in the driveway with a giant red bow on top. 

Has this ever happened to you?  Me either!  But, maybe you do have car on your Christmas list this year. 

Whether you’re treating yourself or a loved one, there’s a lot to consider when buying a car.  So, let’s start with step one – how much car can you afford?

Establishing Your Budget

Buying a car can be a very emotional journey.  It’s easy to get caught up in makes, models, and amenities.  But, the first step of your auto buying adventure should start with your calculator.  Why waste your time researching vehicles you can’t even afford?  First, establish your budget!

Be sure to check out GrooveCar.  There are tons of free calculators there that will help you answer questions like:

  • Should I lease or buy a car?
  • How much will my monthly payments be?
  • Should I take a rebate or low-cost financing?
  • Should I accelerate my auto payments?
  • Exactly how much can I afford to pay for a vehicle?

Get Pre-Approved

Ready to hit the dealership?  Not so fast turbo!  After you establish your budget, it’s important to contact your credit union about getting pre-approved.  During the pre-approval process, you’ll learn:

  • The interest rate of your future auto loan
  • The total amount of money you can borrow

It helps you keep your focus on the cars that are right for you.  And, it also ensures that you’ll get the best deal possible.  Dealers may offer you a flashy incentive to try to capture your financing, BUT there’s usually a catch!

How DuGood Can Help

Buying a car doesn’t have to feel complicated!  We’re here to help you feel good and get the lowest monthly payment possible.  We’ll be posting several more blogs about auto buying this month, so be on the lookout.  And, check out our auto buying guide!  It’s filled with helpful information and makes a great road map that will steer you through the car buying process step by step.

Merry Christmas, and may you find the perfect vehicle for you that’s shiny and bright!

Topics: Auto