Whether you own a retail store or tech startup, you’ll get to a point where you need a company car to help you improve product deliveries, transport sales teams, and boost your branding efforts. Owning a vehicle comes with significant costs though, and the latest automobile market research reveals that the average cost of owning a car is $9,666 per year or $805.50 per month, according to AAA Newsroom. Nevertheless, the benefits of having one or a few vehicles far outweighs the cost of procuring and maintaining them. The process of buying a vehicle for your small business can be daunting, so as a business owner, you must determine if investing in an automobile is worthwhile, then pick your options carefully based on your business needs. To ensure you make informed decisions, below are essential tips for choosing suitable vehicles for your small business.
Determine Your Business Transportation Needs
As you contemplate if buying a company car is worth it, think about its purpose and how often you or the employees will use it. In most cases, businesses purchase vehicles to ensure employees enjoy convenience when traveling to meet clients or attend workshops. You may also want to invest in a company automobile to enhance service and product deliveries. Understanding the reasons your business might need a car helps you narrow down your options. You’ll have a clear picture of the vehicle that fits your business needs based on price, fuel economy, dependability, size, and tech features.
Compare Between Used And New
Once you have an idea of your company’s transportation needs, decide whether to buy a new or pre-owned car. There are numerous benefits of purchasing a used automobile, and the most notable one is low buying price. A second-hand vehicle also comes with a higher value than a new car. However, before making a final decision, make sure to check that important parts like the engine, and brakes are in good condition. Other parts to check include the oil tank and the car radiator, which is the central component of a vehicle’s cooling system. Nonetheless, you might want a brand new model if you’re looking for a car with the latest tech features.
If you settle for a second-hand car, you’ll want to have it inspected by a professional mechanic to ensure it’s in good working condition before you buy. A mechanic will check the brakes, steering wheel and suspension, engine oil, and most importantly, the fuel to ensure it hasn’t been in the car for long. Note that the average shelf life of fuel in the tank is three to six months for regular gasoline. Diesel can last up to one year without going bad. Keeping gas in the car longer than the shelf life causes mechanical failure.
Budgeting is vital, as it will help you pick a model you can afford. A budget will also help you decide if you’ll buy a vehicle with hard cash, lease, or take an auto loan. Therefore, when creating a car budget, don’t factor in the sticker price only. You must account for insurance premiums, maintenance and repairs, registration fee, tire costs, licenses, and fuel. Each of these expenses varies from model to model, so take time to research automobile costs beforehand. This move will help you create a realistic budget.
Choosing a vehicle for your business can be stressful. However, you can simplify the process by creating a budget and identifying your company’s transport requirements. Also, determine whether to purchase a new or second-hand vehicle and review the safety features you want in your company cars.