Your first Car

We just can’t wait – but before you hand over your hard earned cash, or money from that bank loan – read this

When you pass your theory test and practical test you are given a magazine, First Car, please take your time and read it.  It could save you more than you spent!

Carry out some simple checks not only on the car, on your insurance and running costs.   This all needs to be taken in to account.  Have a look at these bullet points about purchasing the car that you are going to remember for the rest of your life!  Let’s do our best to make it a great memory and not one you would rather forget!

Where to look?  eBay, Auto Trader, Exchange & Mart, Friday Ads, Gumtree, Local Dealer, Local Paper, off the street – seen a “For Sale” or from a mate for example.

You need to make sure you can:

  • Get there (and back if it’s not the car for you).
  • Pay for it (check what payment they take and if they charge etc).
  • Insure it before you leave.
  • Tax it before you leave.
  • Take someone who knows about cars!

How much are you going to spend?

If you buy a £250 car, it’s most probably worth £250!  So if something goes wrong – will the repairs cost more than the cars worth?  Spend as much as you can comfortably afford, if you thought driving lessons were expensive – now look at the running costs of a car!

So you think you have found your first car.  Just sit back and hit the computer keyboard to do some basic FREE checks .

  • Check out the MOT History.

Go to the MOT HISTORY website.   This will show you the MOT history, reasons for failure (refusal of MOT Certificate) and the list of advisories.  In my opinion if it constantly fails on little things like Lights, Brakes and Tyres – they don’t look after their car, lack of these simple checks mean they just get in and drive it.  If it comes up with no faults that’s a better start.

If it keeps failing on more major items perhaps it’s getting too expensive to run and that’s why they are selling it (regardless of what they say the reason for sale is)

  • Auto Trader Check – Part 1.

I like this one – Good old Auto Trader – Go to the SELL MY CAR and enter the details of the car (Registration & Mileage) the website will take you through the next steps – just have a look and see the number of owners and if it’s been registered a write off.

Some insurance company will not insure a car that has been previously written off!

  • Auto Trader Check – Part 2.

Back to the Auto Trader website and this time look at the CAR VALUATION page.  Enter the details of the car (Registration & Mileage) and this will give you a rough estimate as to the value of the car.

  • Insurance

Make sure you can afford the insurance – it’s not going to be cheap, and best bet is not to pay for it monthly as the interest charges can be quite steep, but that may be what you need to do.  Also – if your birthday is in a couple of day – wait till after your next birthday as it will be cheaper!

  • Road Fund Licence (Road Tax)

When you purchase a car the Tax is cancelled on the change of owner, so that means you have to Tax the car – you will need the Log Book (V5) and you should keep section 10 (New Keepers details V5C).  On the WEBSITE you simply follow the steps – enter the Registration Number and the 12 digit Document Reference Code and pay by card – you can do this Monthly, 6 monthly or Annually – the choice is yours…

  • Collecting the car.

Well, that’s a great experience – if you have done all the above then we have covered the basic checks.  Take your time and familiarise yourself with the car and the controls before you leave!

  • Got it home!

You have bought your 1st big purchase.  It is really worth having it checked over by a garage.  If you don’t know where to take it – ask your mates where they take their’s, if no, then I use NL AUTOS, 2 Chichester Road, Bognor Regis, West Sussex, PO21 2XE. Phone 01243 865775.