Setting your budget

After deciding upon the type of vehicle that best meets your needs, you'll want to set a budget to determine which particular vehicles are right for you. Set a budget by determining what you can afford. Consumer Reports offers a finance calculator that can help determine your budget. Remember to factor into your budget:

  • Insurance
  • Registration
  • Maintenance
  • Operating costs

Once you've narrowed your choices down to three or four vehicles, compare the cost of insurance for each vehicles. At the budget stage, take a look at what you're currently paying and set a reasonable amount you can afford. Leasing that fancy sports car may be feasible on paper but, if you can't afford the insurance you may be making a big mistake.

Insurance costs can vary depending on the make, model and features, so it's wise to gather all of the information before making your final purchase.
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