Are you thinking about getting a new car? Perhaps you’ve just passed your test and you’re eagerly awaiting that sense of freedom and independence that your own vehicle affords you. Maybe your existing ride is looking a little tired and the bills are starting to stack up. Or it could be that your family is growing and you need something more practical to ferry the kids around in.
Whatever your reason, there are few things more exciting than deciding on a new set of wheels. But is it best to go for brand-new, fresh off the dealership forecourt? Or would you be better served going second-hand? There’s no doubt that a lot of consumers have been turning to the used car market of late. But why is that, and what are the pros and cons of choosing a pre-loved model? Read on to find out more.
Why is it currently so much harder to get a new car?
A car contains several computer microchips and there has been a chronic shortage of these which dates back to the coronavirus pandemic when there was a huge surge in demand for electronics equipment as everyone was forced to work from home.
The effects of that backlog are still being felt now in that consumers are facing lengthy delays in delivery times for their new vehicles. When you combine that with the rising cost of living, many people are simply not in a financial position to be able to afford a new model, which tends to come at a higher price point than a second-hand option.
What are the benefits of buying a used car?
In light of the microchip shortage, used cars are more readily available than new models, so if you need a vehicle quickly then going second-hand might prove a more suitable option. They’re also less expensive, so it won’t represent such a significant financial commitment – something which is of huge importance in the current climate. And because the car is not new, it won’t depreciate at anything like the same rate.
What to consider when buying a used car?
As with any major purchase, there are some potential downsides to consider as well. If the car already has a lot of miles on the clock, for example, you may not get as much use out of it as you would a new model. It could also be the case that the vehicle is no longer covered by a warranty, which may mean you end up having to spend a lot more on any repairs or maintenance. Before you buy, make sure you obtain all the necessary paperwork from the seller and get a full understanding of the vehicle’s history, so you know exactly what you’re getting for your money.