Choosing to buy a car is a huge decision, and it also carries a lot of financial weight. Drivers often have to use loans or special financing options to complete a purchase, but they can't blindly sign on the dotted line and hope for the best. Auto financing requires a lot of research and forethought.
It also means that motorists have to think critically about whether it's the perfect time to jump on a deal - and that's not the easiest thing to discern. Here are three financial signs it might be the right time for you to buy a car.
1. You get a good interest rate
According to WalletHub.com, interest rates are expected to climb throughout 2015, so drivers should jump at the chance to sign off on a low rate. The source noted that people with relatively good credit scores can take advantage of good interest rates. Getting the best possible deal is essential, as even the difference of 1 percentage point can result in thousands of dollars of savings over time.
2. You find a great price on used cars
Are you interested in buying a pre-owned vehicle? At one point, these models were the choice for people looking to save money, but the average cost has skyrocketed in recent years. USA Today noted that the average price of used cars increased to $16,800 in 2014, which is the most expensive mark on record. It also represents a 5.7 percent increase from 2013's average cost of $15,900.
Many experts have predicted declines in prices throughout 2015, but there's no telling how long that could take. So if you find a good deal on a used car, you may want to consider jumping at the chance to capitalize on the price.
3. You've budgeted for maintenance
With so many car-related costs increasing, it's important to find areas where you can save, and one of the most common options is vehicle maintenance and repairs. Do some research to find the makes and models that typically have the most affordable auto repair expenses, as well as those vehicles that offer the best reliability. Paying a bit more upfront for a certain model may not seem desirable, but it could result in plenty of savings over the course of ownership.