There are many milestones to growing a business – from your first sale or client to your first satellite premises, all the way up to that first million. An understated milestone, and yet a hugely important one for many small businesses in the UK, is that first company car. When your business is looking to finance a vehicle for business purposes, it is a sign of prosperity, and of exciting growth. But what should you look for in a car for your business?
What kind of use is your car going to receive in your line of business? Will you simply be driving yourself to meetings, or will you be taking passengers? Will you be transporting tools, or proofs-of-concept? The answers to these questions will dictate the size of vehicle you should opt for. If you’ll be the only one using your car for business, then size is not a crucial factor, and comfort should instead be your main priority. But you may want a larger boot for transporting projects, or even luggage for longer-distance business meetings. If you’ll be taking several colleagues with you, an SUV affords the space as well as the luggage space for several parties.
Depending on the size of your business, and the funds available to you for a car for your business, price may be a limiting factor for you. Create a list of features you would like to see in your car, then create a shortlist of essential features – for example, Bluetooth connectivity to make conference calls on the move. For a tighter budget, you may have to forego certain luxuries in order to get the most suited car to your business needs.
New or Used
An age-old question when it comes to purchasing a new vehicle, choosing whether to buy new or used is harder to answer than ever. Brand-new cars are reliable off the manufacturing line, and can be guaranteed to last a while before requiring service attention – but the market Is dwindling, owing to a shortage of semiconductor chips.
Meanwhile, the used car market is booming. With full service histories often available, giving you reassurance as to the state and reliability of a given vehicle, you can find many reliable used cars that are suitable for business. There is also the added benefit of used cars being kind on your budget, meaning you can look for more executive models to suit your needs.
There are different ways in which your business can pay for your new car, each of which have their own advantages. You can, of course, buy the car outright – a no-fuss option with no prolonged costs, but also a big hit to your business’ budget in one swoop – especially at the start of a financial year. The alternative is a financing solution, whereby the car is paid off in monthly instalments. This can be a lot easier on the financials, but can also incur costly interest rates, leaving you paying above the odds for your new car.
You will also need to consider how to insure your car. Will several people in your business be using the vehicle? Make sure your insurance covers every potential driver, as well as any industry-specific hazards that could cause damage to it.