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How Not to Get Ripped Off When Buying Your First Car

How Not to Get Ripped Off When Buying Your First Car

Cars aren’t something you change every week—once you decide to get your very first one, you should do it properly. There’s a lot of people out there who want to take your money and give you something not as valuable in exchange, which is why you need to be careful.

First of all, you should understand the fact that this project isn’t difficult and that anyone can get a nice vehicle. It doesn’t really matter if you’re not that knowledgeable when it comes to cars or not. That being said, you should go through the next six steps of buying your first car.

Limit Your Budget

You need to be realistic about this; so my suggestion is to give it some serious thought. When getting your first car, you should know that its price isn’t only about what the money you give to purchase it—owning a vehicle will add a certain amount of money to your monthly bills because you’ll have to pay for gas and repairs as well.

Therefore, when you’re trying to decide on a budget, you should make sure that you will be able to afford maintaining your new car.

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Decide On A Model

    Naturally, your budget will determine the quality of your car, but you should also think about what kind of model you are in need of.

    If you need a family car you should go with something spacious like a caravan or a van.

    On the other hand, if you need a vehicle for yourself to drive to work you don’t have to overthink; get something that doesn’t spend too much gas and that you find comfy.

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    This is the part of your project where you need to do research, so take your time so that you can learn about vehicle specifications in order to find a combination that works for you.

    Test Different Vehicles

    The best way to be certain about your decision is to test every vehicle that you consider purchasing. Do so several times per vehicle. Many people find it uncomfortable to go to the same car lot over and over again and ask to test the same vehicle; this is a feeling you need to shake off right away.

    This is not the time to be shy. Getting your first car is an investment into your your future and you should take it seriously, which is why you should get back and test different vehicles as many times as you consider necessary.

    Find A Nice Car Dealer

    Know that a car salesperson works on commission and it’s in their interest for you to agree on a bigger amount of money so that they can earn more. This doesn’t meant they are out to get you; it’s simply something to be aware of.

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    Know The Pros And Cons Of A Car Loan

    If you have credit issues, you should know that you’re not the only one (quite the contrary). So if you’re thinking about getting a loan for your car, make sure to get familiar with the pros and cons so that you know exactly what to expect in the future.

    Used Cars Need an Inspection

      When you set your mind on purchasing a used car you should put another thing on your to-do list: finding a good mechanic. The fact that a vehicle is used doesn’t imply that it’s not in good condition, but you should be extra careful about it and make sure that it goes through a thorough inspection by someone you trust before you sign anything.

      You May Need To Haggle

      I saved the most difficult for the end—this is something you either have in you or you don’t. If you’re like me and get embarrassed at the mention of money, you’ll need help with getting a car from someone who’s highly capable in negotiating for you and lowering the price until it’s reasonable.

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      I know this sounds scary when you lack the necessary experience—the only thing you need in order to complete this project successfully is time. When you take things slow, go through all of your options and do your research properly you will manage to get yourself a vehicle that meets your needs.

      Image Credit: Car in the snow via https://www.pexels.com/photo/car-road-snow-winter-12875/ Woman on car via https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-white-shirt-laying-on-green-car-hood-29842/

      Featured photo credit: Pexels.com via pexels.com

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      Published on January 8, 2021

      How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Fast: 7 Powerful Tips

      How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Fast: 7 Powerful Tips

      Ever wondered whether your credit card debt is the reason you’re in a bad financial situation? You can’t enjoy any fun activities because a good chunk of your money goes toward debt payment. Heck, you’re even behind on some of your monthly bills.

      The effects of clumsy debt management are too many to list here. This guide is going to help you discover how to pay off credit card debt fast and start chasing your financial goals.

      Debt problems are the last thing anyone wants to encounter. But things can get out of hand when all the “little debts” you take accumulate in interests.

      What if you knew some simple and proven ways to be debt-free quickly? Implementing them would mean better financial health for you. It becomes possible to free up cash for your “wants.” These include taking a trip or buying something you’ve always desired. All that while paying your bills on time!

      Let’s not wait any longer. Here are 7 powerful tips for paying off credit card debt fast:

      1. Pay More Than the Minimum Credit Card Payments

      Many people only pay the monthly minimum on their credit cards. Truly, that’s the right amount for staying on good terms with your credit card company. But you need a different approach if you’re looking to achieve financial independence within a short time.[1]

      Most of your payments go toward interest costs when you only pay the minimum amount. A substantial sum of your balance remains standing. As a result, it becomes more expensive to eliminate your debts.

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      You don’t want to wait more than 10 years to get rid of debt while it’s possible to do it sooner. All you have to do is double that $100 minimum payment to $200 or go higher.

      The good thing is that minimum credit card payments are affordable in most cases. By paying a higher amount, you reduce your interest costs, lessen your borrowing period, and boost your credit score.

      2. Start With High-Interest Credit Card Debt

      If you have more than one credit card debt, prioritize putting the extra money toward the ones with the highest interests. This debt pay-off strategy, known as the debt avalanche method, is essential for being debt-free quickly.[2]

      First, you need to list down all the credit card debts you have in the order of their interest rates. Next, you choose the one with the highest interest and pay a significant amount toward it each month. It can be an amount twice or even thrice larger than the minimum payment.

      At the same time, you make monthly minimum payments on the other debts. Their interest charges won’t be as costly as that of the first debt on your list. You only move on to the next high-interest debt after the first one is gone. Remember that your focus is on the interest rates and not the balances.

      3. Revisit Your Budget

      Budgeting is useful for tracking your financial moves. Once you create a budget, some tweaks along the way can make it work for you better. One situation that requires you to revisit your budget is when you’re struggling with debts. It might hurt a bit to slash some expenses. But you also don’t want to miss out on achieving financial freedom in the long run.

      You can reduce some variable expenses to free up more cash for credit card debt payments. They’re the ones that change from time to time. Some examples are groceries, fuel, and clothing.

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      Other opportunities for cutting down your spending lie in non-essential expenses. Instead of dining out all the time, you can cook at home more to save money. You can also share some subscriptions with friends and pay a fraction of the cost.

      If you’re determined enough, you can eliminate all your unnecessary expenses and focus on paying off your credit card debt first.

      4. Avoid Using Your Credit Cards

      Do you want to know how to pay off credit card debt with a low income? One simple way is to stop using them. Having your credit cards everywhere you go means that you’ll be more tempted to buy unnecessary stuff. In this case, you spend money that you don’t really own and get deeper into debt.

      The quickest fix to stop the debt build-up is spending with cash. You’ll be more aware of everything you can afford at any particular time. If you decide to keep one or two cards to ease the transition, always make wise choices. For instance, only use them when experiencing financial difficulties.

      It’s best to categorize your fun activities under “discretionary spending” in your budget. This way, you won’t need more debt to kill your boredom. By halting your credit debt from accumulating, it’s easy to pay down what you already owe and be happy with the progress.

      5. Start a Side Hustle to Boost Your Income

      You’re probably turning away a lot of money by not monetizing your skills. Everyone has something that they’re good at doing. And you can use that to generate extra income for attacking your credit card debt.

      If you look around your neighborhood, you can find several side hustle opportunities. It can be pet sitting, tutoring, or lawn mowing. You can start an online business by offering services such as digital marketing, content creation, and web development. Such skills go in high demand on freelance sites and job boards.

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      Finding clients on social media is also a good strategy to utilize your skills and make more money. Facebook groups, Quora Spaces, and subreddits are some places to look for side jobs. You only have to join a niche-specific platform, share your services, and respond to any opportunities.

      It’s possible to learn a skill, practice it, and earn from it. Use the free resources online or purchase some e-courses to get started.

      6. Sell Your Used Items for Extra Cash

      Starting a side hustle isn’t the only way to generate extra money. You can turn unwanted items into cash for paying off credit card debt. Whether it’s an old TV, book, or furniture, there is always someone itching to buy your used stuff.

      A garage sale, as much as it’s old-fashioned, is perfect for getting your neighbors and passers-by to buy from you. You keep all the money because there are no business permits or taxes involved. While you may not make much cash, it’s better than leaving your stuff to go defunct in your storage.

      Other than that, you can sell your used stuff on online marketplaces. Facebook groups are great places to start if you want quick approvals and hence sales. You only have to ensure that your listing follows Facebook’s commerce policies.

      When selling any pre-owned items online, ensure they’re in good shape to avoid problems with your buyers.

      7. Know When to Seek Help With Your Debt

      Asking for help with your credit card debt can be challenging to do. But letting it drown you is a road you don’t want to take. While you may feel embarrassed at first, it’s the best way to get back on track when you run out of options.

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      There are tons of non-profit credit counseling organizations that can offer you free guidance on how to escape the debt trap. An example is The National Foundation for Credit Counseling. They simply review your finances and help you determine the source of your financial problems. After that, they match you with an actionable debt management solution.[3]

      In extreme cases, the debt solution can be:

      • Debt relief – where your debt is partially or wholly forgiven
      • Debt consolidation – taking out one loan to repay others
      • Debt settlement – the creditor forgives a significant portion of your debt
      • Bankruptcy – legal process for seeking relief from some or all your debts

      It’s necessary to carefully weigh your options before deciding on the way to go. Find out how it might affect your credit score and any other risks.

      Wrapping It Up

      Debt is a major setback when you’re trying to prosper in life. Paying off credit card debt is essential if you want to reach your financial goals. That means having more free income, a good credit card score, and even a chance to retire early. You become more productive each day because of the peace in your mind.

      So, you now have some tips on how to pay off credit fast. Go ahead and get rid of that good life progress killer!

      More Tips on How to Pay Off Debt

      Featured photo credit: rupixen.com via unsplash.com

      Reference

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