How Much Car Can I Afford?

December 18th, 2012 by

Salesman giving car key to customerBuying a car can be an intimidating enterprise, especially when you’re considering how you’re going to pay for it. All car buyers have to contend with the same question: how much can I afford in a new car? While we’ll be happy to help you plan your car budget when you visit Middletown Honda to discuss it with one of our finance professionals, there are some things that you can do to prepare in advance without even leaving your home.

Plan Ahead and Consider Your Options

Planning ahead involves deciding which cars catch your interest and which cars fall within your price range. That’s just the beginning, though. Here are some additional things that you should consider:

  • Lease vs buy – The first question you should ask yourself is whether you should buy or lease. While ownership is nice — and is the right choice if you’re going to put a lot of miles on the vehicle — leasing is a good option if you want to drive a new car every few years and want a lower monthly payment.
  • How much of a down payment can you afford? A larger down payment may allow you to make lower monthly payments. If you’re making a trade, that can help, too — and you can value your trade online.
  • Consider the loan term you’d prefer. If you get a shorter-term loan, you’ll have higher monthly payments, but you’ll pay less overall. With long-term loans, you’ll have a lower monthly payment, but you’ll pay more in interest over time.
  • Don’t forget to calculate other expenses of owning a car, such as taxes and insurance premiums.
  • Before you visit our dealership, you can apply for financing online. This helps you know what exactly you qualify for before you get too serious about any specific model.

Now It’s Time to Visit the Dealership

There’s no substitute for actually coming to a dealership and seeing the vehicles for yourself. The latest Honda models have a lot to offer, but you can save money by purchasing a used vehicle, whether from Honda or another automaker. This is another crucial consideration, and it comes down to more than just the numbers in your budget: you also need to make sure that you actually like the car.

When you’ve made your choice, you can sit down with one of the finance experts here at Middletown Honda to finalize your loan and lease options. We look forward to helping you!