The smart way to buy a used car - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

The smart way to buy a used car

(WTVM) -

Now that your taxes are filed, the money from your income tax refund could be burning a hole in your pocket.

If you are like a lot Americans you may have your eye on a new car.

One in six Americans will use their tax refund to buy a car, according to a survey from Carfax.

Mark Littleton with Kinetic Credit Union said think before you spend.

The first thing you need to do when buying a car is know your budget.

Littleton said the second thing is "get pre-approved so when you go to a dealership, you know how much car you can afford."

Then he said make sure you do your homework on the car because what looks good now could be trouble later.

For example, a beautiful car on the outside could be a gas guzzler and end up costing you cash.

Littleton explained use your head, not your heart when it comes to big financial decisions.

He said "At the end of the day, the car that you are emotionally attached to may not be the one that fits in your budget and at the end of the day the numbers don't lie."

Littleton said get the car checked out by a mechanic and never give into the idea that cars are selling like crazy so you need to leave a deposit or it will be gone.

He commented, "I would not put any money down or use any money until I was ready to purchase the car."

Remember when you do decide to make a down payment, the more money you spend now will mean less expensive car payments down the road.

Copyright 2014 WTVM. All rights reserved.

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