The time will come, sooner or later, when you’ll need to consider probably the second largest purchasing decision in your life, buying a vehicle. Whether it’s your first car or the latest in a series, you’ll inevitably ask yourself, do I buy new or second-hand?
For some, the question is purely academic. With the world in financial chaos, the merest suggestion of a new vehicle is laughable. But if you have the money, there are several factors that can help you answer the question.
What can you gain by driving out of the car showroom with a brand new car, apart from that intoxicating new car smell?
The most obvious advantage of buying new is just that, you know that your car has no hidden history, no previous careless owner and that it comes with a new car warranty. Your new car is as perfect as the day it rolled off the factory floor.
Buying a new car means that you can specify exactly what you want, which options, accessories or colour scheme? Your new car is tailor made for just you. Additionally, by purchasing a new vehicle, you are taking advantage of the very latest in technology, whether that’s fuel efficiency, better emission controls or safety features.
Many new cars sold these days include free maintenance and service for a period. This could add up to a considerable saving over time, so consider it in your overall cost calculations. You’ll also find that banks and other lending institutions will offer better interest rates on a new vehicle than a second-hand one.
So far it seems that the argument is clear-cut in favour of a new vehicle, but there are other factors to consider that may sway your vote.
Many new cars will lose value as soon as they are driven from the showroom, and this can be as much as 40% in the first year. By buying a second-hand vehicle you will avoid this depreciation. Second-hand vehicles are obviously less expensive than a new one, so for the same money as a new vehicle you can often end up with a higher specification vehicle.
Although finance rates may be cheaper for a new vehicle, the opposite is true when it comes to insurance; this is often cheaper for a second-hand vehicle as the value of the vehicle is less.
If you take your time to check that second-hand car carefully before you buy, you can rest assured that the previous owner has ironed out all those production line quirks that can happen to the best new car.
In the end, your decision will be governed by these factors, take your time, do your research and good luck!