Five Tips on Buying or Leasing a New Car

Making decisions regarding the purchase or lease of a new (to you) vehicle can be extremely stressful. There are many factors to consider, including cost. Planning ahead, budgeting for a new vehicle, and making a list of your needs and wants before you start shopping for a new car will make the process much easier on the consumer. Once you've figured out what type of vehicle you'd like to look for, it's best to take your preferred make and model out for a test drive, so you'll be able to gauge your comfort level in the vehicle.

Here are a few tips that may help your decision-making in purchasing or leasing a new car:

Do your research and plan ahead.
If you're thinking about purchasing or leasing a particular make and model, do your research on it. This includes reading articles, checking out recent consumer reports, talking with trusted sources who may own the same type of vehicle, etc. It's always a good idea to try and figure out how expensive (or inexpensive) it will be to maintain a particular make/model, so you know what you may in for, down the road.

Keep your passengers in mind.
How many people will you be carrying in your new vehicle? If you'll be traveling solo, or perhaps with one other adult, you may have more options that those who travel with more people. If you're traveling with children, be sure to take child safety seat regulations and laws into consideration. Check to make sure that the back seat of the vehicle allows room for the number of child safety seats you will be needing to use. Traveling with a pet? You may want to look for a darker upholstery color, which will better hide stains. Can it be cleaned? If you're traveling with children or pets, it would be a good idea to go with an interior that can be easily cleaned.

Think about your climate.
Be sure to think about what types of conditions you may be driving in through the year. Do you need front wheel or all wheel drive? Do you tend to drive in and out of a lot of rain. Would fog lights be of help? If your area receives a lot of snow and ice during the winter months, you may want to consider the tires on the vehicle you're thinking about leasing or purchasing. 

Where do you drive most?
Do you do more highway or in-city driving? This will help you determine whether a manual or automatic transmission might be right for you. If you tend to do a lot of highway driving, you will most likely get better gas mileage with a manual transmission. If you do a lot of in-city driving, however, an automatic is usually the better option. The constant stop and go cycle of city driving can have a negative impact on your manual transmission.

Make a list of Needs vs. Wants.
Making a list of which features you need your vehicle to have, versus the ones you want your vehicle to have is always a great idea. Do this before you go shopping. It will help keep you grounded, and help you stick to your budget. Do you need your vehicle to have the latest bells and whistles, or are they just wants? Keep in mind that the more electronic extras that are in a vehicle, the higher the cost may be to fix them down the road. Who will be spending the most time in your car? Clients? Your family? Select a vehicle that will suit your needs, and be a safe, practical, comfortable option that you'll be proud to drive.

Following these tips will save you from feeling overwhelmed. It's also a good idea to shop for your vehicle with another person, who might be able to look at the situation objectively, and give their honest opinion.

This is a sponsored post, on behalf of Fiat USA of Fort Worth.

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