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Feature Articles: Miscellaneous

Learning for Better Living


Smart Car Buying

PDF file available in both English and Spanish

Buying a car takes time and work. It helps to know what kind of car you need or want and how much you can spend.

First you need to decide:


  • Size and kind of car you need.
  • How you plan to use the car.
  • The options you want.
  • The price you can pay.

Remember: If the price of the car is high, the expenses associated with it are higher, such as insurance and repairs.

Do some homework before borrowing money


  • Find the best deal: Bank? Credit Union? Dealer?
  • Dealer loans are usually more costly.
  • Compare total cost:
    • Interest rate
    • Length of loan
    • Any other cost
    • Contract terms


Read the contract carefully. Understand all the terms of the loan before you sign it.

Shop Around


  • Decide if you want to buy a new or used car.
  • Compare prices and models.
  • Look for consumer magazines on autos or the Kelly Blue Book at the library.
  • Talk to your mechanic, friends and relatives.
  • Call car buying services.
  • Be ready to negotiate the price.
  • Keep the deal simple.
  • Negotiate the lowest total price, NOT the lowest monthly payment.

Look for the best car loan. Have your own loan or credit approved before you go to buy a car. This way you will be sure to get the best deal.







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Last update: Tuesday, May 05, 2009