Before buying a car
- Investigation on your behalf
Compare the prices advertised in newspapers and published online. Check in different car yards.
You can trade in the car, especially when using it.
Car magazines and websites can provide information on vehicle performance, fuel costs, safety equipment, and other details.
Find out the cost of regular maintenance for different cars. For example, maintaining or repairing an imported car may be more expensive.
Good information can be obtained from the following sources:
Howsafeisyourcar.com.au: Safety assessment of different automotive products
Fuel Consumption Index Database – Provides details on the fuel consumption of different types of cars
Green Car Guide – Provides information on the vehicle’s environmental protection performance.
VicRoads provides a guide to a fuel consumption database: vehicle license, road driving certification, and safety record checks.
- Visit the finance and insurance markets.
Most licensed car dealerships offer financial comfort. However, it may not be the best and cheapest option for you.
Research rates and fees for banks, credit unions, and other credit institutions.
Do not sign a car purchase contract until you have approved the loan.
Although not required, if you buy a car, take out your insurance. If you crash or your vehicle is stolen, damaged or vandalized, insurance will protect.
You can purchase insurance from any provider. Make sure to add the cost of insurance to your budget.
The cost of insurance varies depending on the different types of cars and your driver’s qualifications. You may also have to pay more if you or someone under the age of 25 drives the car.
- Choose the best way to buy a car
Generally, most new cars are purchased through licensed auto dealers.
However, you can also purchase a used car through a private seller or through the auction house. Make sure you choose the option that works best for you.
Although buying a car through a private seller or auction house may sometimes be cheaper, it is risky because it does not give you the same legal rights as buying a licensed car from a dealer. You can’t even inspect a car before purchasing it.
Buying a car from a licensed car dealer gives you more legal rights. For example, even after signing the car contract, you can change your mind within three days.
You also get a warranty when purchasing a vehicle from an authorized dealer. Warranty means if something goes wrong after purchasing the car, you won’t have to pay to fix it.
Both licensed dealers and private sellers sell cars “online”. Be careful when purchasing a car that you haven’t even seen on your own.
Before purchasing a car, seek help from someone you trust to independently assess its mechanical condition.
Be careful if you see the price of a car in an “online” advertisement is much lower than expected. It is possible that there is no car and there is a trick to extracting the money in the name of stopping it.
When buying a car
- Sign the contract
Don’t feel pressured to sign a contract. Take your time to understand the contract. If you don’t understand, show it to someone else who will.
Do not attempt to sign the contract at first sight of the car. Take time away from the point of sale to make sure the vehicle is right for you.
If there are some things in the contract that you disagree with, talk to the seller about them. It is possible to change the terms of the contract.
- Change of opinion
Remember, if you sign an agreement to buy a car from an authorized auto dealer, you will get a “cooling off period” of three business days. This means you have three days to change your mind about buying a car.
If you change your mind to buy a car within three days, the dealer can reserve the following amount:
$ 400 or 2% of the purchase price, whichever is higher (for new cars), or
$ 100 or 1% of the purchase price, whichever is higher (used cars).
Remember that you are obtaining a warranty when purchasing a vehicle from an authorized dealer. In the future, the warranty protects you from having to pay for any defects that occur while the vehicle is in use. The warranty period may vary for new cars. There is no warranty for the sale.