How to Know If You Can Afford a New Car
Have you heard of 20/4/10? It’s a guideline (some people call it a rule) for protecting your finances when buying a new vehicle. 20/4/10 suggests that you make a down payment of 20 percent, finance the vehicle for four years or less, and make sure that your payment will be no more than 10 percent of your gross income. It’s not a bad suggestion, but what do you do if you really need a car and the numbers just don’t fall in line?
Sterling Acura of Austin suggests that you begin with our free, easy-to-use online calculator, where you can quickly and easily calculate your buying power. Just enter the monthly payment that you’d be comfortable making, figure in the down payment that you can afford to make right now, estimate the trade-in value of your current vehicle, and then select the term from the drop-down chart, anywhere from a quick 12 months all the way up to 84 months (seven years).
While some financial advisers might tell you to never go that long on car payments, sometimes you just don’t have a choice. After all, if you need a car to get to work, what choice do you have? We understand those things at Sterling Acura of Austin, and we’re determined to help you get the vehicle you need.
Instead of calculating your purchase power first, you can choose to start out with the price of the vehicle you’d like to purchase. Enter that amount as the loan amount, then enter the down payment that you can afford to make at this time. If you have a vehicle to trade in, enter that value. Select a term between 12 and 84 months and choose the interest rate you’re aiming for. Within minutes, the calculator will give you a pretty good idea of what your monthly payment will be.
So if you live near San Antonio, TX, Cedar Park, TX or Round Rock, TX and you’re looking for an Acura car for sale, check out our inventory and then use our stress-free online calculator to help you make your own determination of whether or not you can afford it. We’ll be standing by to show how car financing works. And, if you decide not to buy, we can help you find out if leasing rather than buying is right for you.