Do You Know Your Next Car’s Real Total Cost?

BMW cars

Have you found your perfect car at a great price? Great news – but don’t forget that the sticker price isn’t all you need to pay. If you don’t take the other ongoing running costs into account, you could wind up with financial problems rather than a stress-free drive. What other things do you need to think of when working out a car’s total cost?

Finance Fees

Unless you’re able to pay cash for your car, the type of finance package you can get has a massive effect on the overall price you pay. Your credit status, the interest rate, the size of your down payment, and the length of the loan will all push your monthly payments up or down. It’s helpful to get a no-obligation credit quote before starting your car search, so you know what your monthly budget will translate to in the windshield sticker price.

Auto Insurance

Auto insurance can vary a huge amount depending on the type of vehicle you buy – you can’t rely on getting a new policy for your current price when you change your vehicle. Try using online quote services to check the likely costs for several different models of car, so that you can get a realistic idea of the size of vehicle and engine you can afford to insure.

Gas Costs

Fuel costs are an everyday item that’s easy to overlook when switching your car. If you drive a high mileage, then even a small change in engine efficiency can make a large difference in gas costs over a year. Don’t go for a bigger, more powerful vehicle without working out how this could increase your running costs.

Maintenance and Repairs

The costs of taking your car to the repair shop aren’t simply down to the type of fault that needs fixing. Some models are easier and cheaper to maintain than others, some are more likely to have mechanical failures, and some less popular models can need expensive and difficult-to-find parts. Before buying a car, check for typical maintenance costs for that make and model using an online calculator.


Tires are surprisingly costly to replace, and it can vary widely between different types of vehicle. While you can’t avoid wear and tear, if you’re buying a used vehicle then make sure the tires are as close to new condition as possible, including the spare in the trunk. Buying a car with old tires will mean paying a hefty bill for replacements sooner than you may think.

Taxes and Registration

Lastly, the costs of registration and tax will vary according to your location, the kind of car, type of license plates, and more. Most US states have an online calculator to give you a breakdown of what you’ll have to pay, and it’s a sensible idea to check this out before buying your chosen vehicle.

Buying a car can be a minefield if you don’t take care, but preparing properly will help you get a good deal. Working out the total cost of your car including running costs will avoid a nasty financial surprise after you’ve driven away from the lot.


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It’s helpful to get a no-obligation credit quote before starting your car search… Learn more:


Posted by Philly Auto on Monday, January 15, 2018


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