People do an enormous amount of thinking…and worrying, and stressing out…when they are trying to decide if they can afford a new car.
There are a few questions that you should ask yourself when you're trying to decide if this is something you should or shouldn't do.
We've partnered with Don Vance Chrysler Dodge Jeep & Ram to help you answer the question Can You Really Afford a New Car?
Is Your Old Car Unreliable?
If your current vehicle is unreliable, then you obviously need to be looking at something else. That is, unless you don't mind getting to work, appointments and events late all the time, or breaking down on the side of the road doesn't faze you in the least.
Are You Spending Money Consistently on Repairs?
Consider this: If every month you're having to fix something on your current car, whether it's the power steering pump, alternator, or even engine work…you could be putting all of that money that's already going out anyway into a new car. If you can afford repairs, you can afford a payment. Just sayin'.
Is There Room in Your Budget?
This one should be an easy question to answer as no one knows your bank account better than you. Do you have money left over every month that you could allocate to a car payment? And if not, then ask yourself this next question.
Can You Make Room in Your Budget?
Again, you know your budget and lifestyle the best, so only you can decide if there's something else you're willing to give up to make room for a car payment. Things like cable, cell phones, eating out and extra entertainment, depending on your situation, could be cut or at least cut back to make room for a new car payment.
How Important is Reliability?
Let's face it, new cars are reliable! There's nothing quite like the feeling of getting behind the wheel of a car and feeling secure, not like you're not going to break down at any minute. (And trust me on this one, I've driven both! Knowing I can take my kids to school in my pajamas and not have to worry about getting stuck on the side of the road is huge!)
So when asking can you really afford a new car, also ask yourself this: Can you really NOT afford one?