Tshegofatso Makgabutlane always dreamed of having her own car. By saving for a deposit, budgeting carefully and using credit responsibly, Tshego’s dream became a reality
Having your own car creates a great sense of freedom, but also comes with a lot of responsibility. Any car, no matter the size or style, is expensive to run and maintain. Fuel price increases never seem to end, there are always regular services to be done as well as all wear-and-tear expenses to contend with. Then, there’s car insurance, another pricey – but necessary – expense.
Owning a car can open a world of opportunity, as was the case for Tshego. After shopping around, she spotted her dream car at a dealership. It was the perfect set of wheels for lazy Sunday drives or the ultimate road trip adventure with her girlfriends. But she also knew that having her own transport meant she would be able to apply for a job that required her to travel farther from home.
Tshego saved up, did her math and budgeted carefully to make sure she could afford the running and maintenance costs of a car. The only downside was that the VW Polo was slightly more expensive than she had originally budgeted for. She decided to apply for credit at Capitec to cover the difference – and was instantly approved, thanks to her good credit record.
With her own car, Tshego – who graduated with a BA degree from North West University in 2015 – could get a permanent job at the university.
Today, thanks in part to having her own transport, she is a higher degrees administrator who assists prospective and current students with applications, registration and other queries.
Tshego’s new position and added job security has allowed her to make her monthly repayments on her car with ease, and on terms that suit her needs and pocket.
“I took credit for the right reasons and it has helped me realise my dreams,” she said.
If you decide to buy a vehicle, consider these important tips:
1. Make sure you buy from a reputable dealership that is registered with the Motor Industries Federation.
2. Compare prices of similar makes and models, to make sure the cost and condition of the car is fair and reasonable.
3. Consider aspects such as the mileage – the lower the better and it is a good way to estimate mechanical condition of the engine and also the bodywork. Also 4. check for any oil leaks, as this may indicate some problems.
5. Find out if the car has been in any accidents. Depending on how serious the repairs were, this could affect its reliability in the long term.
6. Check the service book. Cars that are serviced regularly tend to be more reliable in the long run because they are properly maintained. The service history is also a good indication of what to look out for, when it comes to future maintenance issues.
7. Don’t buy a car simply to impress your friends or family.
8. Your decision should be to fulfil your needs, according to your budget and affordability.