Are you thinking about buying a home, going to grad school, purchasing a new car, or splurging on a luxurious recreational vehicle? Most people who face these kinds of decisions have one major question on their minds, to begin with, “How to save on big ticket items?” It’s a sensible thought and one that requires some planning, budgeting, and serious discussion with a spouse or other family members. Even if you live alone, any of those five things calls for careful thought and nearly always means applying for financing.

Save on Big Ticket Items

Consider the following details about each goal with the aim of saving money but still getting a quality product.

Homes

Home Structure

The secret to saving on a home purchase is to work with a licensed, experienced realtor who knows the area where you want to buy. Don’t make price your only criteria, but let the real estate pro know that you have strict financial parameters. Youโ€™ll want to be smart with your financing and working with a professional can help keep you in check. Be patient because, in today’s market, it could take up to a year to identify a property that meets your particular needs.

Graduate Degrees

graduate certificate

Few prospective grad school students can pay cash for tuition and related fees. In reality, your best bet for keeping costs low is to do extensive research on programs that meet your educational goals. Avoid opting for big-name institutions. Smaller, lower priced graduate schools usually offer much better value. The second part of saving is related to financing. In fact, if you want the best rates and conditions on educational loans, as well as the chance to borrow the entire cost of the degree upfront, apply with a private lender. You’ll save a lot in the long run by being careful about which school you attend and sticking with a private lender for financing the cost of attendance.

Personal Cars and Trucks

new car

There’s an art to getting a car or truck at a rock bottom price. There are also several techniques that work, depending on the kind of vehicle and price range you’re talking about. First, consider using a fee-based broker to locate the exact make, model, trim level, and price you desire. Most charge between $250 and $500, but you’ll typically save at least twice that by avoiding dealership markups. If you choose to buy a used car from a private owner, always have it checked out by a licensed mechanic before paying. Plus, assume that individual sellers are willing to significantly lower their price if you offer to pay cash up front.

Rec Vehicles

Saving on RVs (recreational vehicles) can be both a challenging and highly rewarding task. The trick is to be patient and keep your eyes on the ever-changing market. Fortunately, there are several excellent websites where owners and prospective buyers can connect. Some charge small fees and others are free. The best is membership-only sites that ask for nominal payment for one-year memberships. Saving on RV purchases is a three-step process. First, know exactly what you’re looking for, right down to motor specs and interior features. Next, be willing to wait at least several months for a suitable candidate to appear on the listings. Finally, employ your best negotiation skills to talk the price down. Nearly all RV sellers are open to cutting their initial asking price.

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