Lady experts in car buying

Women are playing an increasingly important role in car purchases, and here are things new female drivers need to consider before buying a car.

Why this is important?

Visiting a car dealership can be overwhelmingly intimidating, even for some men. In my opinion, the best way to remedy the situation is to develop good knowledge.

I'm not saying you have to be an expert on this, but you need to know your needs and preferences as a minimum. Women often like to shop freely, with no specific purpose, but when we go on a mission (to buy shoes that go perfectly with a dress, for example), we are generally more satisfied with the result.

The same principle applies when purchasing a new vehicle. Before even entering an exhibition hall, think about a few basic elements in order to orient yourself properly and get off on the right foot. If necessary, write everything down on paper and refer to this checklist as often as possible, so as not to forget anything.

1. The nerve of war: funding

First, discuss with your financial institution the amount of loan for which you would be eligible as well as the current interest rates. Then draw a portrait of your personal finances. This way, during your shopping, you will know if you really can afford to buy this or that model, which will make you a more informed consumer and better equipped to negotiate.

If you decide to get financing from the dealership, it's the same thing: set a specific limit on the total price of the vehicle or the monthly payments.

Also make sure you know the amount of deposit you want to deposit and the value of your trade-in vehicle if applicable.

2. Buy or rent?

Should you buy or rent? What a dilemma! I could go into more detail and give you more details, but this choice depends on your personal situation, that is to say your finances and the use you plan to make of the vehicle. In general, I advise you to determine the monthly payment that you are ready to pay and, according to this amount, choose the solution that suits you best.

3. Thinking about what you really want

Are you looking for a sedan, an SUV, a coupe, a convertible or a minivan? So many women come to me for advice when they haven't even found the answer to this question yet. However, it makes the process easier by thinking about what they want and those they don't.

Do you prefer a manual or automatic transmission? Five or six reports? Do you value amenities such as power windows and locks, an adjustable steering wheel, Bluetooth technology , satellite radio or a navigation system? There are things we cannot do without; in my case, these are the heated seats .

Then think about what you don't want. This will prevent you from being convinced by the seller to buy a model that you do not want or that you simply do not need. Many consumers concerned about fuel economy and liters per 100 kilometers have a magic number that guides their choice. Others don't want to know anything about automatic transmissions.

4. Only focus on three things

Make three lists: the essentials, the desirable conveniences and those which do not interest you at all. Don't let anyone influence you; after all, this is your criteria and your preferences. In addition, it is you who will drive the vehicle every day. These will be your butt on the seat and your hands on the steering wheel, so be sure to make the right choice foryou .

5. HEMI? CVT?

Also, at this stage, do not ask too much for the help of those around you. Your best friend may hate driving with a manual transmission and convince you to think like her. Another possibility: your new friend can try to make you believe that there is nothing sexier than a young woman driving a large tank with HEMI engine.

6. Go online

Internet is a wonderful tool these days, so be sure to use it to explore certain vehicles you are interested in and find out about their equipment, including the options available. For more technical terms, Wikipedia and Google will help you greatly.

After the house, the automobile is the most important purchase you will make in your lifetime. Whether your budget is $12,000 or $120,000, you need to know what you are buying.

Tick this list when you are making a car buying decision.