Create A Maintenance Schedule
Using the manual, buyers can also get to know what the regular maintenance schedule is for the car. Each manual contains a suggested maintenance schedule, so a buyer knows what to expect and plan for in the future. Sticking with the recommended schedule can help in saving money over time, too.
Maintenance is a crucial part of being a responsible car owner. That includes keeping an eye on the wear and tear of tires, keeping up with oil changes, and getting regular tune-ups. Finding a trusted mechanic is essential in keeping car maintenance from becoming overwhelming.
Signs You Need To Schedule A Repair Service
Itâs easy to notice if your car wonât start or if smoke is billowing from your engine, but other repair issues come with more subtle signs. Even if youâve already invested in a pre-purchase inspection, be on the lookout for one or more of these signs that itâs time to schedule an automotive repair:
- Check engine light turns on
- Brakes grind, squeal or scrape
- Low fuel economy
- Unusual engine performance while idling or driving
- Difficulty steering your vehicle
Treat all of these seriously and schedule a repair at your earliest convenience. A little leak in a brake line could quickly prevent you from stopping your vehicle at all. Difficulty steering your vehicle could cause an accident.
Set Up Your Loan Payment Schedule
Most new-car buyers have good credit ratings. But even people with good credit can occasionally miss car payments. While it might seem like a little thing if your payment is late, the fact is it can negatively affect your credit rating. And that can cost you money in the long run by making the next loan more expensive.
There are several ways to ensure you make your car payment on time. You can schedule writing a check and mailing it to your lender in a timely fashion each month. Or you can schedule online or mobile bill payments with your bank or credit union. A service like that lets you pre-approve payments to the lender from your financial institution each month. Another option is to give the lender permission to withdraw scheduled payments from your bank account on a recurring basis. Some lenders will offer a discount on your monthly payments if you authorize this. The downside is the money might come out of your bank account at an inopportune time.
You May Like: How Much Is Car Insurance In Nc
Make Any Needed Repairs
This is something that should really be done before you sign on the dotted line, or at least be taken into consideration for the final price of the used vehicle. If major repairs are needed, the seller should ideally make those repairs before you purchase the used carâor at the very least knock money off the sale price in lieu of repairsâas you will likely end up spending money down the road to make the repair yourself. These agreements between purchaser and seller should be properly documented in the bill of sale so they are more clearly binding.
If you feel like something is glaringly wrong with the car after you purchase it, take it to a mechanic you trust to have it checked thoroughly. And obtain your bill of sale to clarify if there is any warranty left on the vehicle or if it was an âas isâ sale.
Copy And Save Paperwork
Itâs important to make sure you copy and save all the paperwork associated with your new vehicle purchase.This includes your proof of insurance of the vehicle, registration, bill of sale, any contract you signed with the dealership or bank for a loan or lease, the title of the vehicle and any warranty agreements and/or contracts. You should also keep all proof of maintenance done on the vehicle.
Anything and everything can be replaced and requested from your local DMV, as long as you have proof of ownership via a bill of sale or vehicle registration .
You should always keep your vehicleâs proof of insurance and registration in your car, somewhere safe.
Read Also: How Does Car Financing Work
Check On Your Other Insurance
Since you are buying a new vehicle, you will have to change your car insurance coverage. Thats a given. It also is a great opportunity to review all your insurance coverage. Likely you have homeowners or renters insurance coverage. You might also have insurance on a boat, personal watercraft, or motorcycle. You might even have insurance on an electric bicycle.
With that in mind, it could be to your financial advantage to consolidate all that coverage with one insurance carrier. Often called bundling, this could result in significant savings on your overall premiums. Checking with your current insurance broker is a good place to start. Or you could seek online quotes from several insurance companies. You might save hundreds of dollars a year for similar coverage.
Learn More About Buying A Used Car With Privateauto
These steps help you enjoy a stress-free experience after you buy a used car in California. Buy a car through PrivateAuto to manage the entire process easily and conveniently. Discover your premier technology-driven, self-service solution with verified sellers, e-signing, PrivateAuto Pay funds transfer, and more.
Read Also: How Much Car Can I Afford Calculator
Register The Car And Transfer The Title
In order to legally drive your new car, it needs to be registered with the DMV and you need to have the title in your name.
If you buy your car from a dealer, sometimes they will help you with the registration process, but often you will need to do it yourself . Some states have made registration and title transfer services available online check your local DMV website to see whether you need to visit a DMV in person.
If you do need to go to the DMV, Skip can help you make an appointment and offer you personalized support to make sure you have all the documentation you need. You can also make an appointment on your states DMV website or via phone.
Your registration will need to be renewed upon expiration we offer registration reminders to make sure you avoid late fees for expired registration. Some states are offering extensions on registration and other business during the pandemic. Check out our post here for a full list of extensions.
How To Take Care Of Your New
Congratulations on buying a car, truck, motorcycle, or any other type of vehicle! Whether its your fist car or the latest addition to your fleet, purchasing a vehicle is a big deal. Buying a vehicle from an auction is a great way to save money you will pay a lot less than you would at a dealership. However, there are a few things that you will want to do before you go for a drive. Used cars can be in great condition, but they still belonged to someone else for a period of time before you bought it. Therefore, its important to learn as much as you can about your vehicle, as well as perform any necessary updates for your safety and so that you can be a better car owner!
You May Like: What To Do If I Lost My Car Title
Documents To Transfer A Car Title
Purchasing a used car from a private seller doesnât mean youâll need to navigate the title transfer process on your own. You may not have a dealership to assist you with gathering and signing the right paperwork but a technology-driven, self-service platform can help after you buy a used car. Here is the required information for the state of California Department of Motor Vehicles to transfer a title:
- Application for Replacement or Transfer of Title
- Smog certification
- Vehicle identification number, or VIN
- Year, make and model of vehicle
Read through the title transfer application, or use a self-service platform to e-sign the application, to be sure you have all the information you need. This application will need to be sent to a California DMV office and failure to properly fill it out can stall the entire process.
Trading In Or Selling Your Vehicle
Before you trade in or sell your old vehicle, be sure to remove the license plates and the windshield registration sticker, which shows your plate number. This will help prevent you from being charged with parking tickets that do not belong to you.
Turn in the plates to a motor vehicle office unless you are transferring them to a replacement vehicle. Always turn in your plates before you cancel liability insurance or before the insurance lapses. If you do not, your registration will be suspended, and your driver license could be suspended as well.
When transferring the vehicle’s title certificate to a new owner, you must fill out the appropriate odometer and damage disclosure statements, and sign your name at “Seller’s Signature.” Then enter the seller’s information on the sales tax form Statement of Transaction – Sale or Gift of Motor Vehicle, Trailer, All-Terrain Vehicle , Vessel , or Snowmobile , available at any motor vehicle office and the DMV internet site.
You May Like: How Much Is A Car
Why You Can Trust Bankrate
Founded in 1976, Bankrate has a long track record of helping people make smart financial choices. Weve maintained this reputation for over four decades by demystifying the financial decision-making process and giving people confidence in which actions to take next.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that were putting your interests first. All of our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts, who ensure everything we publish is objective, accurate and trustworthy.
Our loans reporters and editors focus on the points consumers care about most the different types of lending options, the best rates, the best lenders, how to pay off debt and more so you can feel confident when investing your money.
Check For Existing Recalls
Recalls happen in brand-new and used vehicles as technology changes over time. Sometimes, manufacturers will send out information for a recall because of a necessary update, too. Certain recalls can also affect driver or passenger safety, so recalls cannot be ignored.
After the purchase is complete, buyers can find information about recalls from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Get the vehicle identification number or VIN from the car to complete a search. It is also a good idea to check for recalls multiple times a year because new recalls are released periodically.
Read Also: How Often To Change Car Oil
Cars Are Built For The Long Haul
Modern automobiles are built to a very high standard. How do we know this? Most drivers dont even blink an eye at the sight of 100,000 miles on their odometer. In fact, the average car on the road is over 12 years old and has roughly 130,000 miles on the odometer, according to Experian data.
Another thing to consider is how long cars are kept by their owners. Experian data shows that the average driver trades their vehicle in after six years. While not an eternity, six years is still a significant amount of time, especially to drive the same car. Thats why its important to know what you need out of your next vehicle so you dont have to trade it in sooner than necessary.
Repair Any Unresolved Problems
Heres to hoping you took the car for a test drive and then had a certified mechanic run a full inspection on the vehicle to see if there were any major problems that needed fixing. If there were a couple of problems that were found but you were still comfortable buying the car and fixing them after the purchase then now is the time to get those fixed. Getting these repairs done now rather than waiting till youre broke down on the side of the road is one of the best decisions you can make. Also, checking to see if there are any service recalls on the vehicle is always a good move, check with the previous owner or a dealership to see if the recall repairs have been taken care of.
Also Check: How To Disable Gps Tracking On Car
Get Familiar With Features
Once the car is ready to go, buyers need to familiarize themselves with the cars features. Learning what all of the buttons do is vital because the last thing anyone wants to deal with is trying to figure out how to open the gas tank at an inopportune time. Knowing how to program the dashboard is helpful, too, to enjoy driving to the perfect soundtrack.
Features go beyond the buttons, though, and include levers for seats and the position of latches if installing a car seat is an essential aspect of the used car. Finding out where all of the power outlets are is also important so owners can charge their gadgets as needed.
How We Make Money
You have money questions. Bankrate has answers. Our experts have been helping you master your money for over four decades. We continually strive to provide consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout lifes financial journey.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that our content is honest and accurate. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions. The content created by our editorial staff is objective, factual, and not influenced by our advertisers.
Were transparent about how we are able to bring quality content, competitive rates, and useful tools to you by explaining how we make money.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. We are compensated in exchange for placement of sponsored products and, services, or by you clicking on certain links posted on our site. Therefore, this compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and whether a product is offered in your area or at your self-selected credit score range can also impact how and where products appear on this site. While we strive to provide a wide range offers, Bankrate does not include information about every financial or credit product or service.
Also Check: How Much Deductible For Car Insurance
Check Your Brake System
As the most important safety feature in your vehicle, your brake system deserves routine attention and maintenance. Here are the most common parts that wear down through normal use:
Brake pads are the most common maintenance item in your brake system. They typically last between 10,000 and 20,000 miles, depending on your driving habits and vehicle type. Worn brake pads usually start to grind or squeal. Continuing to drive with worn pads can reduce your stopping performance and increase the risk of a collision.
The 4 Things Everyone Should Do After Buying A Car
You saved up, looked at all the options, did the test drive, and signed the papers. Youre officially a car owner. Congratulationsnow what? Buying a new car can be overwhelming, but taking care of the important details early will help you down the line. In this post, we are breaking down the four essential steps you need to take after you bring home your new car.
You May Like: How Long Does Car Rental Hold On Credit Card
Create A Maintenance Plan
Maintenance steps are typically more frequent and less serious than repair tasks. Some maintenance items you may wish to perform on your own, while others are best left to the professionals. These steps are very important after you buy a used car. They not only improve the value of your vehicle but can also keep you safe while you drive.
Most maintenance steps include checking fluids and filters. Some of these steps donât apply to electric vehicles, so always consult your ownerâs manual before looking for a particular fluid reservoir or other maintenance tasks. Here are the most common maintenance tasks to plan after you buy a used car.
Your Car Means Your Options
When spending money on a new carespecially one you want to keep for a long time consider getting the options you want. Whether its a car available on a lot or placing an order for a custom optioned vehicle, having a car that meets your exact specifications will not only make you happy behind the wheel but will likely save you money in the future as youll have more incentive to keep the car long term.
Things like paint color, interior upholstery, and technology packages are not easy to change after the fact. All the more reason to get the vehicle you really want the first time around. And if the budget doesnt allow for every option box to be checked, you can prioritize the must-haves vs. the nice-to-have items.
Read Also: Where Can I Get My Car Aligned
What To Ask When Buying A New Car From A Dealership
Buying a new car is exciting. You will be able to drive everywhere and see new places without the hassle of taking public transportation. However, there are many things you need to take care of before you can happily go driving.While some apply to both new and used car purchases, others are specific to one or the other. If you buy a car from a dealership, they may handle at about What should you do after buying a new car?
Things To Do If You’ve Just Purchased A New Car
Buying a new car can take a lot of effort, so it is natural to want to relax and exhale after you complete the process. But if you do, you wont get the most out of that expenditure, and you could even be opening yourself up for problems.
Instead of slumping in your easy chair, it is sensible to go through a checklist of things you should do immediately after buying a new car. Completing these simple tasks will ensure that you take advantage of every feature that your new vehicle offers you. And it will also ensure that you dont fail to do something that could make owning the car even easier. Some of these tasks can even save you money. So here are 10 things to do if youve just purchased a new car.
You May Like: Where Can I Pay My Car Registration