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Purchasing A Car


Purchasing A Car

Purchasing a vehicle is one of the most expensive purchases a consumer will make, second only to buying a home. As with any major purchase, it is imperative that you plan well for it.

As cited by Google, the average price of a new car sold in the U.S. is well over $40,000. With that price tag, it’s wise to go car shopping armed with information and a plan. Here are some tips to help guide you through the car buying process.

  1. Before you shop for a car, look at your monthly budget and calculate exactly how much money you can spend on it.  Be sure to include costs for owning, operating and maintaining a vehicle in that total. Examples of those costs include fuel, oil, registration, repairs, insurance and all other costs associated with operating a vehicle.
  2. Check your credit score well in advance of purchasing a car, if possible. This will enable you to correct any errors and potentially increase your eligibility for more competitive financing.
  3. Do not purchase a vehicle based off of the monthly payment you have budgeted for. What may seem like a reasonable payment could really be an extended agreement, one that will result in paying hundreds or even thousands of dollars more for your car.
  4. Shop around for the best financing, incentives, and offers. Sometimes car dealers offer very low financing rates for specific cars or models, but they might not be as flexible in negotiations for the sale price of the vehicle. They could also require a large down payment. Do your research ahead of time to avoid any surprises at the time of purchase.
  5. If you plan to trade-in your vehicle, know its value. Discuss the possibility of a trade-in after you have negotiated the best price for your new car.
  6. After you purchase a vehicle, be on the lookout for your introductory letter from the lender that provided financing. This letter will include important information about your loan.
  7. Set up an online account in order to make electronic payments, sign up for estatements, and closely monitor your account balance.
  8. Avoid late fees by making your payment on time. Automate this process by utilizing BillPay, a service offered within your Centennial Bank app.

Following these tips could save you time at the dealership and thousands of dollars on your vehicle purchase.

For more information about auto loans, please visit our website at