Car Buying Tips

By Mommy Donna and Kib - March 31, 2018

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It is everybody's dream to have their own car.  It is one of the things that each and every individual aspires as one of their assets, as proof of their hard work.  While it is still advisable to invest on real estate first, no one will judge you if you bought a car first than owning your own house.  Anyway, both are useful, it is up to you on how you would manage your finances and investments, just make sure that you will still have some money to save for the future and for emergencies. 

I've been driving for nine years now.  There was a need for me to drive for my family.  My father got sick and no one will drive for the family should there be any emergencies.  I first drove a manual transmission van.  My uncle then gave me an automatic transmission car in 2012.  Recently, that car has been showing signs of wear and tear; last October I changed two front tires, batteries, evaporator, and other minor parts replacements which cost me Php25,000.  It's so painful to the pocket, ahuhuhu....

Since the start of 2016, I've already been praying for a replacement car.  I am not really praying for a brand new car though, just an upgrade of what I'm currently driving.  I am praying for a second-hand mini SUV.

The Lord will really surprise you big time.  I never really planned to get a brand new car because I can't afford it.  I can't qualify to apply for an auto loan because I lack financial documents. One day, a bank representative called me to inform me that I have a pre-approved auto loan!  I was so surprised because I was not really expecting it.  

I didn't immediately grab the opportunity to apply for an auto loan because I was still contemplating about it, if I was just being excited about it and not planning on how I can manage to pay the amortization.  I still asked the blessing of my uncle who gave me my first car if it is okay for me to dispose it.  When I got his approval, then I went back to the bank to finally process my auto loan.  In a week's time, my brand new car was released to me, yay!

I took a leap of faith, but I know the Lord will provide me resources on how I will be able to pay-off my auto loan.

I've learned a lot from my auto loan experience and I would like to share it with you.

1.  Apply for an auto loan directly to the bank.  Most car companies don't have an in-house financing company, what they do is they just assist the potential buyers in applying for an auto loan to the banks.  If the auto loan is coursed through the car company, chances are interest rates are much higher because the car company has a 'cut' on the interest earned.  While car dealers don't like the idea of applying for an auto loan directly to the bank, still, there are some car dealers who would still accommodate you and give you the best deal.  For you to have an idea on how much you are going to pay for your auto loan, you can try the computing it using an auto loan calculator.

2.  Ask quote from several car dealers.  Yes, they are still competing with each other, so you may ask for quotes for several car dealers from different branches to see who can give you the best deal.

3.  Purchase cars towards the end of the year.  It is likely that the car that you will acquire will be the latest model (model to be released the following year) at the price of the current year and you can get big discounts.

4.  Build good banking relationship.  This means being loyal to a particular bank for several years and maintaining a high maintaining balance.  Also, try to avail of several banking products too to create a good credit history.  In my case, I would be having difficulty applying for a regular auto loan because I lack financial documents (ITR), but since I have been with this bank for years now, I got qualified for a pre-approved auto loan.  The bank can also give you good deals whenever you need one.

There you go!  I do hope that I was able to help you with your first car.  Hope you can tell me about your auto loan experience.  Good luck!

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