Buying a car is something most of us have to go through, be it purchasing the car second hand, shaking hands with a salesperson in a dealership or buying online. But does the whole process stress you out?
When any of us buy a car, it tends to be a significant purchase. For most of us, it’s the second biggest expenditure behind buying a house. And, as with any big purchasing decision, there can be an element of stress involved.
I’m about to stress my point…
The first phase of this can be around deciding if you even need to buy another car in the first place. The majority will be replacing a car, and the idea of letting go of a long-lived motoring companion can be hard. There’s a difficult choice to be made between increasing repair bills or paying out a lump sum for better reliability.
Then there’s the new-car selection process: How far will your budget go? Will it be a reliable model? Will it suit my needs better than others out there? Is there a car that will have cheaper running costs? With so many cars available on the new and used market, this can be a pain-staking selection process for some people, especially when car knowledge is somewhat limited.
Car buying choices
And of course, there’s the purchasing process itself, which you can break down into three phases.
The first is deciding where to buy from. If you’re buying new, do you go for a local dealer, venture further afield in order to find a dealership with a stronger reputation, or head online to a broker? Used buyers will be scouring private and trade ads, preferably trying to find vehicles within a realistic distance radius that look to fit requirements.
Secondly, there’s the phase of identifying the running costs of the vehicle you want. Running car insurance quotes, checking VED car tax bands and working out approximate annual fuel costs are vital to make sure you can afford to keep the car on the road.
Finally, there’s the process of buying the car in person. New-car buyers will feel the pressure of haggling to better their deal and negotiating a higher spec, while used buyers will feel the demands to reduce the listed price.
How Which? can help
For Which? members, much of this stress can be relieved by our testing. Not only do we recommend cars based on our rigorous testing and the UK’s largest car satisfaction survey, we can also tell you more realistic fuel efficiency figures.
We also have guides to advise you on how to buy a car, and the best way to go about it.
Anyway, back to the debate. Do you get overwhelmed by the stress of buying a car? Or are you always filled with excitement? And vote in our poll to tell us which part of the car-buying process stresses you out most.
What about buying a car stresses you out most?
The haggling process (44%, 398 Votes)
Choosing which car to buy next (20%, 181 Votes)
Deciding if I need to buy another car or not (17%, 156 Votes)
Choosing where to buy the car from (11%, 101 Votes)
Working out if I can afford to run the car or not (7%, 60 Votes)
Total Voters: 896