Posted December 15, 2014 by

Why Buying A Car Is Like Finding A Job: What Millennials Need To Know

Beautiful young woman buying a car at dealership

Beautiful young woman buying a car at dealership. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Studies have shown that millennials are completely changing the way that cars are purchased. Often overwhelmed with student loans and other debt, today’s younger car shoppers are looking for a different type of vehicle than other generations did at their age. With that being said, millennials are projected to account for as much as 40 percent of car purchases by 2020. Therefore, it is important for this generation to take the car buying process seriously. In many ways, it should be taken as seriously as looking for a job. In this vein, here are a few tips to consider when purchasing a new vehicle.

1. Do your research

When looking for a job, it is important to research the job market to see what kinds of jobs you might be interested in, their salary ranges, job satisfaction rates, etc. The same is true when purchasing a vehicle. With all of the different websites and apps out there, it is easier than ever to know the facts before purchasing a car. Make sure to research important factors such as the price of the vehicle, gas mileage, safety features, etc. If you live in a cold climate region, you might consider a car that has four-wheel drive. Conducting this kind of research ahead of time will greatly reduce the time you will spend at the dealership.

2. Think about your budget

Know how much you can afford to spend throughout the car buying process. This will help you research the right vehicle for you as well as help you avoid disappointment later on. It might be beneficial for you to write down your monthly expenses and factor a monthly car payment into the equation. Many of today’s younger shoppers are already cost conscious because of debt and other factors. If you are one of those people, you are already on your way to becoming a fiscally responsible car owner.

3. Identify what you want

Just like the job hunt, once you have done your research, you are one step closer to finding the car you want. While this may be the case, though, you still might have several types of cars to choose from that fit within your budget and assessment of needs. If so, then it’s time to become more specific about your color, style, and size preferences. Once you have truly narrowed it down, you are ready to head to the dealership and negotiate a price.

4. Negotiate, negotiate, negotiate

Yes, it’s true. Car buying, just like securing a job, comes with negotiations. In the job setting, you will have to negotiate your salary and benefits, and when purchasing a vehicle, you can negotiate the price of the car as well as any additional features or upgrades. There are no set rules when it comes to pricing a vehicle, but it is important that you come with a set of expectations before you start haggling. You might also see what the competitors are asking for the same car, and use that to your advantage.

5. Protect yourself

When you get your first job offer, it is important that you ensure that your potential employer will protect you in cases of emergency, sickness and possible job elimination. When you purchase your first vehicle, it is equally as important that you find adequate protection for potential circumstances that are beyond your control. This means that you will need to research and purchase the best automobile insurance coverage to fit your particular needs. When you finally make it to this step, it is important to be thorough and know exactly the kind of insurance you need. This includes understanding state laws and how they relate to your insurance plan. Protecting yourself and your passengers might be the last step in purchasing your vehicle, but it is often the most important.

6. Enjoy!

Once you have successfully purchased a car and the right insurance plan for you, it’s time for you to enjoy the ride!

Natalie Saldana is the Southwest Vice President of Sales for Estrella Insurance.  Natalie was promoted from Assistant Vice President to Vice President of Sales in December of 2013. Outside of work Nat enjoys camping & the outdoors, and her favorite activities always include spending time with her husband and three children.

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