Tips For Buying A Car Online

30 November 2021 Blog

The way we buy cars is changing, and with more and more car retailers offering the option to buy online, car buying has never been easier.

In a mid/post Covid world, more retail companies are adapting to online ordering, and buying a car is no different. We share our advice for buying a car online and how to make your transaction as smooth as possible.

Advantages Of Buying A Car Online

There are many advantages when it comes to buying a car online:

  • Choice - browse thousands of cars without geographical restrictions.
  • Convenience - save the time and energy of having to visit multiple dealers. Shop whenever and wherever suits you.
  • Quick - find your car and apply for finance (or pay in full) as soon as you have made a decision (your finance can be approved in minutes in some cases)!

Is Buying A Car Online Safe?

Buying a car online is completely safe as long as you are purchasing from a trusted retailer. As with any online purchase it’s good to be aware of what makes a website safe too, and read into return policies as well.

We’d also recommend checking to see if there is a phone number that gives you an option to speak to a real person. Retailers with physical stores can also offer added reassurance as you can go and look at the car in person should you wish to before committing to your purchase.

Tips For Buying A Car Online

Research the car

A car is no small purchase. As with buying a car offline, it is important to do as much research as possible before you begin, to understand which model will meet your needs and fit in with your lifestyle.

Think about what you’ll be using it for:

  • If you’re regularly commuting something more fuel efficient would be the way to go
  • For those transporting the family, you’ll want something more spacious and safety is also a concern
  • If you travel long distances, comfort is of the utmost importance

Then move on to the features that you need, e.g. sat nav, bluetooth, heated seats, cruise control. What will make your day to day car journeys easier and more enjoyable?

Finally, consider your budget. How much are you looking to spend, and which cars fit in your price range. Opting for a nearly new car over a brand new car can save you thousands of pounds so are always worth considering.

Research the retailer

Buying from a reputable retailer is really important when buying a car online. It’s no small purchase so you want to make sure it is bought from someone you can trust.

Research their website to see how long they have been trading, ask friends and family, look at their social media channels and see what other customers are saying about their experiences on review websites such as Feefo and Trustpilot.

Part exchange

If you want to quickly and easily get rid of your old car at the same time, look out for someone who also offers a part exchange online too.

Not only does this save you the hassle of getting rid of your old car, but the equity can be used towards the purchase of your new car. What’s more, if you opt for a home delivery of your new car, your new car can be delivered straight to your door, and your old one taken away without you having to leave the comfort of your home!

Think About Which Finance Options Are Best For You

Car finance is a great way of spreading the cost of your purchase over a few years.

The most common finance you will see are Hire Purchase (HP) and Personal Contract Purchase (PCP).

  • HP lets you spread the cost of your purchase over a set number of years with fixed monthly payments. You will own the car outright at the end of your agreement
  • PCP allows you to make lower monthly payments, by deferring a large proportion of the value of the car to a final one off (balloon) payment. At the end of the agreement you can choose to either pay this and own the car outright, give the car back, or part exchange it for a new car and either pay in full or start a new finance agreement.

There is no ‘best option’ when it comes to car finance, it simply comes down to what is best for your needs.

Choose A Handover Option That Works For You

Once you have found your perfect car and sorted out how you will pay for it, the next step is getting those keys in your hands and enjoying your new wheels!

There are normally two options available to you when you have bought a car online - collecting the car in person from a store or collection hub, or having it delivered to your home.

Both options have pros and cons, and again the option you choose will come down to your personal preference.

Either way, we would recommend looking at the returns policy with both options just in case you are not entirely happy with your purchase, which leads us nicely onto our next piece of advice...

Returns Policy

Do your research around the returns policy. Retailers such as Motorpoint give you 14 days to make sure you love the car, if you’re not entirely happy with the car, you can return it or swap it for another car.

Ask For Advice, Help & Opinions

No matter how much research you do, car buying can still be an overwhelming experience with the volume of choice that is available.

Whether you speak to family or friends, want to pick up the phone and speak to the car retailer yourself, or even dropping a message on social media channels - make the most out of your car buying journey to make it as easy as possible.

Ready To Buy Your Car Online?

Are you ready to start your car buying journey? Motorpoint has thousands of nearly new cars in stock, all under warranty and available at unbeatable prices.

Browse our entire range online, and either collect your dream car in store or have it delivered to your home!