10 Tips on Buying Your Next Car

Finding the perfect car that will suit your needs for years to come can be a daunting task. Follow these steps to help make your next car purchase a pleasant one.
Fortunately doing the necessary research and planning is far simpler today than in decades past.

Once you have an idea the kind of car you want, feel free to browse our showroom and select the cars that stand out for you.

You can then decide on whether or not financing or paying cash will be in your best interests.

Your Blue Chip Dealer will gladly assist you through every step of the vehicle buying process.

1. Be Smart

As much as you might like to dream about what you want in a car, it's best to think more about what you need — not just now, but in the future, too.

Functionality should trump flash. Here are some practical considerations to keep in mind:
  • How many passengers will you carry? 
  • Will you be driving on the highway, inner city, gravel, tarmac, onroad, off road? 
  • How important is fuel economy to you? 
  • Do you need airbags front and back? 
  • Do you need large cargo capacity? 
  • Will you be using children's car seats? 
  • Hoe often will you be towing other vehicles? 
  • Will it fit in your garage or parking spots?

2. Budget Wisely

Unless you're paying cash for your car, you'll need to think about financing your purchase. How much can you really afford towards a car payment each month? A good guideline is no more than 20 percent of your monthly take-home pay.
Do you have a good credit record? Do you have a deposit or trade in? How much will the insurance be each month? There are many factors to consider.
If you are financing your vehicle, you will need to make sure that you meet all the relevant credit criteria.
Your Blue Chip Dealer will gladly care, assist and guide you through the entire vehicle finance process.

3. Different Car, Same Class?

Many shoppers have their hearts set on a very specific car. But in today's ever-changing marketplace, there are always competing manufacturers that you may have never considered, that could be perfect for you.

If you already have a car in mind, it is good practice to review other comparable cars in the same class, just to make sure you haven't overlooked a potential better choice.

Click the "Buy Car" menu option to search for your next new or used car and to also see comparable Blue Chip cars in similar classes.

5. It's Not Only the Purchase Price

Some cars may be cheaper to buy but more expensive to own. Some cars depreciate faster than others, some cost more to insure and maintain.
Before you commit to a car, try to estimate its long-term ownership costs. These costs include depreciation, insurance, maintenance and fuel costs.

6. Find Your Car

In the past, you had to visit dealerships in person to see inventory and find out if the cars had the options you wanted. Now, using online showrooms, you can quickly gather more information and get the right deal for you.

Once you have an idea of what car you want, simply contact the relevant Blue Chip dealer to confirm the car's availability. Your Blue Chip Dealer's contact information can be found when viewing your selected car in the Buy Car section of this website.

7. Time to Test-Drive

Now that you've found a car that seems like it might be a good fit for you, call or email your Blue Chip Dealer to schedule a day and time for a test-drive.

Your Blue Chip Dealer salespeople are great allies: They cater to informed buyers and kindly assist the uninformed alike.

By making a test-drive appointment, you ensure that the car will be waiting for you when you arrive.

8. What to Look for in a Test-Drive

A car might seem to have all the features you want, but the true test takes place when you are in the driver seat. You should test-drive the car the way you would drive it during your everyday life.

If you commute, drive the car in both stop-and-go traffic and at highway speeds. If you trek to the mountains, find some steep hills to climb. Drive over bumps, take tight corners and test the brakes in a safe location. Get in and out of the car several times and be sure to sit in the backseat, especially if you plan on carrying passengers.

Check out the cargo space. If you plan on using children's car seats, bring those along to test for fit and ease of installation.

While you are evaluating the car, don't be distracted. Take your time looking everything over. A good salesperson will respect your need to experience the car and will let you focus on the driving experience.

Turn off music so you can listen to the sound of the engine. You can evaluate the sound system when you return to the dealership.

If the conversation does turn to questions about whether you'd like to talk about buying cash or financing, you can say that you're still in the test-drive stage.

9. Pick Your Car

After test-driving a few cars, the choice should be clear. If it isn't, sleep on it. In the morning, you might have your answer. If not, you might need to take a few steps back and drive more cars.

While making the right decision is important, it's also good to realize that there isn't one perfect answer. Today's cars are safer than ever before. They get better gas mileage. 

They have amenities at lower costs than in the past. In short, there could be several good vehicle choices and the final decision is really a matter of individual taste.

10. Time to Buy

Now that you've done research that (we hope) makes you feel confident that you've found the right car for you, it's time to buy.

All Blue Chip Dealers offer excellent financing arrangements and will always strive find the perfect deal for you.

Be sure to include any paint protection and warranty options available so that you are completely covered in any event.