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The ultimate guide to choosing your vehicle & finance

8th April 2019

Leasetree gives you a  straightforward guide designed to help you select a car & to get the car finance deal that’s right for You.

8th April 2019

You are in the driving seat!

While the car industry still has some jargon and its own way of doing things, the rise of comparison sites, an increase in finance choice and the ability to shop around have changed the way we buy cars and your options.

You no longer have to rely on the car salesperson to navigate you through pages of terms and conditions to form your own opinions on what’s best for you but there are a few hints and tips that you can use to get the most suitable vehicle and here is a simple and helpful leasing and finance guide designed to help you get a deal that is based on your specific needs.

Tips for finding the right car for YOU.

Let’s look at the car side of things first, what those in the industry refer to as the “Metal” part of the deal and the questions you might want to ask yourself which will help you select the right car or van.

The first question to ask and answer is, “what type of car do I want – a new or used one?”.You can use the simple steps below to help you decide what type is best for you.

Step 1) Do I want a new, nearly new or used car?

  • New cars have the advantage of coming with a brand new warranty, no costs associated with MOT’s for 3 years and of course, are lovely to drive and be driven in but you will normally pay a premium for this.
  • Nearly new cars, which, at Leasetree, we classify as having done less than 5,000 Miles, still retain that new car smell but you get a discount for not being the first in the driver’s seat – sometimes, quite a substantial one.
  • Demo cars often come with high specifications but at a discounted price.
  • Short term lease deals. If you don’t want the hassle of owning a car, want to test a particular car or are unsure about your personal circumstances ( for example just started a new job) then short term leasing might be for you.
  • Used cars used to be a minefield. Will I buy a lemon? Will the company selling it honour their warranty?

Know your rights: In this day and age, a dealer is responsible for the car for effectively the first 6 months after the paperwork is signed.

Under the Consumer Rights Act, you can reject the vehicle within the first 30 days if not of satisfactory quality, not fit for purpose or not as described. Between 30 days and 6 months, if a fault comes to light then you are entitled to a repair, replacement or refund although the refund may be subject to a fee for use of the vehicle during the period. After 6 months, the burden is on you to prove that the vehicle was faulty at the time of delivery.

So buying a used car is a lot safer now than it was in the past. You can see loads of used car special offers here.

Step 2: What do I mainly want the car for and what are my category choices?

Do you do a lot of mileage and need a saloon that will whisk you in comfort across the country but not so you have to stop at every petrol station? A working mum that wants a safe, reliable and practical people carrier? A small business owner that needs a small van that’s up to the job but can also double as a passenger vehicle?

Everybody’s needs are different but the type of vehicle you want will generally fall into the following categories:

Small car – sometimes called a city car, perfect as a nippy runaround, frugal but can still take 4 adults when needed. Examples of small city cars include a Nissan Micra and super-minis like the Ford Fiesta or the Audi A1.

Compact Family car – A trusted and reliable car, comfortable on the school run and going for a day out with the family to the beach such as a Mercedes A-Class, a Ford Focus or a Kia Ceed.

Spacious Family car – Room for the family and the dog or for a trip to the recycling centre. Likely to be a Medium Sized Estate like a Merc C Class Estate, Mazda 6 Estate or a saloon like a Ford Mondeo.

MPV People Carrier – A multi purpose vehicle is also known as a minivan – load them all up! There is a huge range here from the small Fiat 500L through to the Ford C Max, the Citroen Berlingo, Ford Torneo etc.

SUV’s and Crossovers – Join the high riding trend from the smallish Audi Q2 through to the ever popular Qashqui, the BMW X3, Volvo XC60, Audi Q5 and Q7, Mercedes GLC, the list goes on and on.

Coupes – Make a statement with a smooth looking Coupe available in compact form like the BMW 2 Series, a family-friendly Coupe like the A5 or a luxury performance vehicle like the Mercedes S Class.

Sports Car – Performance is king and the road is your “fun zone” with a small, zippy Sports car like the Mazda MX5, Ford Fiesta ST, a Porsche 911 Turbo, Mercedes AMG C63 or a Supercar like the Audi R8.

Luxury Saloons – As British as cucumber sandwiches, even if most of them are German! Go for a compact one like the BMW 3 Series, a medium Sized Mercedes E Class or a big Audi A8.

4×4 Pick-Ups – More and more popular with excellent tax advantages for the self-employed. Work-horses like the Isuzu D-Max, the practical Toyota Hilux double cab or the luxury Mercedes X Class.

Vans – Small, practical vans like the Ford Courier, Medium sized practical load carriers like the Vauxhall Vivaro, giant ones like the VW Crafter or crew vans like the Nissan NV300.

Helpful tips when deciding what type of vehicle to buy:

When you consider what vehicle to buy, focus on the thing that you need that car or van to perform for 90{ce1f5a97386adb343f3d9b12b92f2c65f76aa8e98ead3145386a848fb9911aa8} of the time. For example, if you want an economical small car but need more space once a year on the annual holiday then focus on getting a small or medium sized car that’s economical and you can always add the likes of a roof box when the holidays come round. This beats buying a large estate car that might not be as economical for you to use the other 50 weeks of the year.

Ask yourself the question, does whoever I am dealing with have enough stock and variety within the car or van category I am most interested in? If not, you could be pushed into a vehicle that’s not ideal for you. At Leasetree, you are never short of choice and we have access to thousands of new, nearly new and used deals on real vans and cars for sale, check out our special vehicle offers here.

Step 3: What’s important to me in a car or van?

Think about what you value most highly. Is it comfort, good residual values, economy, performance, practicality, styling, handling, equipment levels, space for driver and passengers, low insurance costs, proven reliability or long warranties.

It’s difficult (pretty much impossible) to get all of these things in one vehicle, think about a performance-based sports car which is generally not built for practicality or economy. Pick 3 or 4 key factors that are very important to you and have these in mind when speaking to a dealer or doing your own research.

Ask yourself: Does the company I am dealing with have the expertise to guide me on finding a vehicle with the 3 or 4 things that are most important to me. Perhaps you are happy doing all the research yourself but if not, and the answer is no, move on!

Leasetree only deals with partners that have all of the elements above and can help you answer the key questions relating to your new car and the finance for it. We have access to thousands of new, nearly new and used cars which means you get all the choice for the category of car that suits you and experts to help you find a car that suits your key needs.

You can find fantastic special vehicle offers here but if you don’t see one you like the simply contact us in the “Get a Quote” section and let us know the car or van you are after- we have access to thousands of new cars and hundreds of used cars in stock.

Equally, you might prefer a short term lease deal – anything from 3 months to 2 years in length. Please click here for our short term leasing page.

Now for the Finance:

We have an in-depth Leasetree article on different types of finance here and how they work.It’s safe to say that car finance and vehicle leasing deals can be confusing, but it does not have to be and we have laid out the basics below for each type of lease or finance.

PCP Deals: A Personal Contract Plan allows you to take a vehicle for a defined period (normally 2 to 4 years) and either hand back the vehicle or pay a “balloon payment” at the end so you can keep it.

PCH Deals: Personal Contract Hire deals are the purest form of leasing agreement. You never own the car and simply agree a period to pay a monthly lease fee and at the end, you hand the vehicle back.

HP and CS Deals: Hire Purchase & Conditional Sale deals are more traditional forms of finance. You agree on a term (normally 2-5 years), pay the monthly repayment on the car loan and, at the end, the car is yours. HP and CS deals have the advantage if you know you are going to do high mileage.

Ask yourself: What is the best outcome for me?

  • Do I want the flexibility of low monthly payments of PCP where I can still decide to keep the car down the line.
  • The straight forward monthly lease option of PCH or if I know that I want to keep the car down the line, pay off the car in installments using HP or CS?

The above forms of finance are for personal finance deals but we also have business car and van finance deals which you can find here or select any special offer on the special offers page and the business lease deal option is below the selected car or van .

Leasetree are different in that instead of thinking how much money we can make from a deal with different forms of finance, we simply think: What’s the best outcome for you? In fact, the service is free for you and we genuinely don’t mind if you want or need a short term car lease, conventional hire purchase finance or a flexible PCP deal and we make it easy for you to compare your options.

A good finance company or broker will not only give you the terms and conditions to read…they will explain the benefits of each finance option or car leasing deal and the steps to financing a car with you in mind. That’s why Leasetree only works with partners that have a huge selection of finance types and genuinely care about the financial outcomes that are right for you.

If you cannot find the right car or van on our site or you are looking for a particular type of finance, please fill out the “Get a Quote” form and advise us what you are after in the comments box- we have 1000’s of new car deals and nearly 1,000 used cars ready to go.