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Finding a car that meets your all your needs can be a challenge but with a little legwork it is entirely possible. To help you make your way from wanting a new car to driving the right one home, consider the following steps.

What Do You Need?
Everyone has different requirements to consider when looking at cars. Some questions to ask yourself might include how many people will you regularly need to tote around. How much cargo do you often need to transport? Where will you be driving and in what conditions?

If you have six people to carry around or bulky cargo to move around, then maybe a compact isn’t for you. As much as you’d probably like the have the gas mileage of a compact car, it just isn’t going to be a kid-mover for youth sports. It’s important to know what needs your vehicle will be fulfilling or else you might find yourself missing something important.

What’s Your Budget?
No matter what car you’re thinking about taking home, it’s important that you’re able to pay for it without straining the family budget. To that end, it’s important to consider all the expenses associated with car ownership. In addition to the car purchase price, add gas, maintenance, repairs, insurance, and registration costs. Our friends at East Hills Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram (Greenvale NY) say that they advise their customers that good benchmark is that when all of those costs mentioned above are added together they should take up no more than 20% of your monthly budget.

Keep An Open Mind
While you may go into your car search with a certain model or brand in mind, keeping an open mind is important. Another model or brand of vehicle may offer features your initial choice doesn’t. And even if the car you were initially interested in does prove to be the one with the features you need or cost you can best afford, at least you’ll have confirmed that the one you wanted all along was the best choice.

Take a Test Drive
Setting up a test drive allows you to get a feel for how the car you’re interested in drives. You will find that there is quite a difference in the way that different cars “ride” and handle when on the road. A test drive will allow you to feel what it’s like first hand.

Once you’ve got an idea of what you’re looking for in a car, what you can afford, have compared different options, and tried them out for yourself, it’s time to make a decision. Each of the steps we outlined above should help you sort out what kind of vehicle will work best for you without costing you an arm and a leg or leaving you with one that’s a pain to actually drive. Whether you end up with the first car you considered or one you never would have expected, following these steps is bound to leave you in the driver’s seat of the perfect car for you. Good Luck!

Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.