There's nothing quite like the feeling of driving away from a forecourt in a brand new car. But there are a number of important decisions that need to be made before you get to this point and we're not just talking about what colour upholstery you want or the number of cup holders you require.
As well as factoring in any hire purchase or finance repayments, you need to determine whether or not you can meet the monthly running costs of the car, including things such as fuel, tax, insurance and annual services.
Here, we take a look at some of the things you need to consider for before you sign along the dotted line at the dealership.
Advantages of buying new cars
When you purchase a new car you should be buying into years of trouble-free motoring, with little wear and tear on the vehicle meaning that servicing costs are kept to a minimum and any repairs, if necessary, should be covered by the manufacturer's warranty.
In addition, new cars do not require an MOT test to be carried out for the first three years and, as long as you don't opt for a gas guzzler, you should find that your new car is economical to run and so you should save on fuel and car tax costs too.
Then there is the advantage that you get to tailor the vehicle to your exact specification. This, coupled with the fact you'll be the first person to own the car means that you can, to some degree, personalise your vehicle to truly make it your own. However, it may be wise to not go over the top with the personal touches as this could affect its desirability when the time comes to sell it on.
Disadvantages of buying new cars
The dreaded depreciation is the main downside of buying a new vehicle; your nice new car could lose over a one-third of its value in the first year alone and this could rise to as much as half over the first three years.
New car prices are always a lot higher than second hand prices, even if specifications have not changed significantly, and so you could find that you can make a big saving by picking up a car of a similar specification that is just a couple of years older.
New cars also often command higher insurance premiums, largely because they are thought to be more desirable to thieves and component parts may be more expensive to replace in the event of an accident. That said, it is always worth shopping around for car insurance to make sure you get the best deal.
Shop around for the best new car deals
Just as you make sure you get the best deal on your car insurance, you should also shop around for the best new car deals, keeping in mind that some online brokers will offer the cheapest price.
However, bear in mind, that the lowest price you find might not be the best option as you could be limited to certain specifications and may also have a lengthy wait for delivery.
In addition, the lowest upfront price may not actually prove to be the best value option in the long run, particularly as many dealers now offer incentives such as one year's free car insurance, breakdown cover and even free fuel in some cases. So you should also factor in these costs before making a decision.
Finding the best new car deals for you
It can be difficult deciding which of the many cheap new cars on the market is the right one for you. Think about what you consider to be the most important features and find a car that fits the bill.
For instance, if you cover a lot of miles during the year you'll need to check how many miles per gallon a car does as this will give you an indication of how much you'll be spending on fuel each month.
You also need to consider how much the annual road tax is on your new vehicle, remembering that this is now based on CO2 emissions, and so the more eco-friendly your car, the less you're likely to pay for road tax.
The type of car you buy also has a large bearing on the cost of your car insurance so you should always check the insurance group of your new vehicle, remembering that the higher the band, the higher the premium.
Find cheap new cars with MoneySupermarket
As well as being able to help out with cheap car insurance, MoneySupermarket can also help you find the cheap new car you've been searching for after teaming up with a series of partners who can compare deals to find you the best price.