Choosing a car is no easy task. Here are tips to help you decide.
One of the first major purchases that most people make is a car. Interestingly enough, it is often considered one of the worst investments you can make, because, unlike other assets, cars almost always depreciate in value.
Think carefully about what you're looking for, as the better you know ahead of time what you need, the more targeted your search will be, and happier you'll be with your choice. A convertible isn't the best choice for a family of five, and an SUV will prove to be a challenge for someone driving long distances or constantly navigating downtown traffic and parking lots. You’ll also need to work out what your priorities are for a car, whether you value looks, reliability, safety, trunk space, status, or gas mileage, to name a few criteria.
After you identify what is important for you in a car, it will make it easier to objectively narrow your search down to specific brands/models/styles. You’ll also want to think about whether or not you want a new or used car, which each have advantages and disadvantages. New cars will typically depreciate 20% to 30% the day they leave the lot, so if you’re willing to give up on the new car smell, buying a vehicle that is one or two years old provides you with almost the same experience at a much lower price tag. Used cars can always be found at any price point, so once you’ve decided on what kind of car you want, you have infinite choices to make it fit your budget, with varying levels of compromise.