2. Before going to the dealership to shop for a new car, if you have to borrow money for the purchase you should:
a) Talk to several lenders and decide how much you can comfortably afford to spend on a car after factoring in monthly payments on a loan (such as for three years) and then stick to that maximum purchase price.
b) Determine how much car you can comfortably afford, but if you want a more expensive vehicle, find out if you can qualify for a larger loan when you get to the dealership.
c) Check advertisements for “special” financing from the dealer (such as zero-percent interest) because that will always result in the lowest-cost deal.
1(b) If you need to borrow money for college, only do so after you explore and exhaust all available grants and scholarships. Borrow as little as possible, and only after comparing your loan payments to projected earnings for your intended career path. Otherwise, you could struggle with debt problems for years. (See If You Need to Borrow for Higher Education for more information.)
2(a) The more you borrow, and the longer the repayment period, the more you pay in interest. So shop around for the best financing deal for you, and don’t purchase a more expensive car than you can comfortably afford, even if you qualify for a larger loan. And even if a dealer is promoting special financing, it may be cheaper to use low-rate financing from your financial institution in exchange for a lower purchase price on the car. (See Auto Loans: How to Get a Good Deal.)
3(a) By consistently putting money into savings before you can spend it, you can gradually turn small sums of money into bigger amounts for important purchases in the future. (See Simple Ways to Rev Up Your Savings.)
4(c)The results can be dramatic when you start saving early, even in small amounts, in tax-advantaged retirement accounts. Look into all your retirement savings options, which may come with matching contributions from your employer. (See Simple Ways to Rev Up Your Savings.)
5(b) A low-cost checking account without overdraft protection is typically your best choice. Overdraft programs can be costly. Advertisements for prepaid cards may not list all the fees you could be charged. In addition, prepaid cards often do not offer ways to set up automatic transfers into a savings account or to access other services that a banking relationship can offer. (See For Everyday Banking: Choosing the Best Account for You.)