The internet has revolutionized the car-buying process throughout the 21st century, and one purchasing method that has significantly grown in legitimacy is home delivery. Plus, at a time where the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic is forcing the general public to practice social distancing and self-quarantining, more car shoppers may turn to home delivery in order to avoid contact with others as much as possible.
The entirely-online car buying process shares many similarities to the typical car buying process, but differences arise when you find a vehicle that you like. Follow along to find out how you can buy your next car without leaving the comfort of your home.
Perform Car Research
It’s always important to be thorough in your research and vetting when buying a car, but it’s especially important when you make the choice to buy a car online and have it delivered. You should try to be extra cautious than if you’d be shopping in person because you have less ability to rely on your firsthand senses to evaluate your options. Other than that, though, the research phase remains largely the same. Refresh yourself with the steps we’ve covered previously:
Set a price range
Choose a body style
Decide on a size
Assess your performance needs
Make a checklist of desired features and options
After you’ve decided on the model and trim you want, the next step is to search listings to find matching vehicles that have a home delivery option.
Shop Online Car Listings
This step also remains similar in nature, but you’ll want to filter your search for vehicles that are available for delivery. Though this feature isn’t available here at Auto.com, you can segment listings in this manner by browsing our Cars.com partner’s listings. From there, we strongly recommend that you test drive vehicles you’re interested in purchasing and, as mentioned earlier, be extra vigilant when you finally see options in person.
Most dealerships that offer home delivery will allow you to schedule a test drive online to minimize your time spent away from home, but some will even deliver the car to your home to test drive it there. Additionally, automakers are increasingly providing test drive and purchasing delivery options to adapt to the effects the COVID-19 coronavirus is having on the automotive industry.
Check the vehicle listing information to see if you can schedule a test-drive delivery or contact the dealership directly to ask what options you have to see the vehicle in person. Even if they don’t have a home delivery policy for test drives, they may be willing to work with you, especially as local, state and national governments continue to impose social restrictions on businesses.
Don’t Forget to Secure Financing
As you begin to narrow your options and schedule time to see them, whether that’s at the dealership or at home, be sure to get approved for financing. Review the guidelines we previously wrote about:
Understand the components of a loan
Choose a lending option
Shop the best terms
It’s relatively easy to secure financing remotely now, so this step shouldn’t require you to leave your home.
Schedule a Car Delivery
Once you’ve made the decision to buy a vehicle and you’re satisfied with your experience behind the wheel, work with the dealership or online retailer to schedule a convenient time for home delivery. You may be required to pay a small delivery fee depending on how far the vehicle needs to be transported, but in return you enjoy minimal disruption to your life at home, as well as protection to your health and safety while the coronavirus pandemic persists.
After the Vehicle Is Delivered
Congratulations! You’ve successfully purchased a vehicle online and had it delivered to your home. Take the time to read through our checklist detailing what to do after buying a car and enjoy your new (or new-to-you) car.