The OFW's guide to buying a car

The OFW's guide to buying a car

Updated on February 25 2024

Are you a Filipino working outside the Philippines for so many years? Do you want to travel to different places when you visit your home town or, enjoy the convenience of driving anywhere? Why not reward yourself by buying a new car? Doing that will certainly make your dreams come true. Aside from that, you can also bring along your loved ones wherever you go, without the hassle of renting a vehicle or riding any public transportation cars. It will make your trip more enjoyable and unforgettable!

If you want to buy a car, there are several things that you need to bear in mind. It includes deciding the type of automobile, where to buy it, and the process as an OFW. Do not worry! We will share essential information that will help your car shopping escapade easier.

How to choose the right car for you?

The answer depends on your needs and what you are looking for in a car. For a family car, search for vehicles that provide safety features for your passengers its seating capacity. For this, an MPV can be your best option. This type of car offers enough legroom for everyone. If you need something more rugged, consider an SUV. These are usually equipped with powerful engines and can power through rough weather and terrain. If you have more disposable income, you may look at luxury automobiles. Compared to other vehicles, luxury cars pack high-end amenities such as advanced infotainment sound systems and richer-feeling materials. Just take note that most classic cars, as its name suggests, often cost more than those in the lower segment.

After that, there's the matter of budget. An online calculator is a great tool to help you know all the expenses you need to pay. Some payments include the sales tax, car insurance, monthly amortization if you plan to get it through car financing, and more. Additionally, do not forget to save some cash for the maintenance work and possible repair costs that you may encounter in the future. It is vital if you will use your car for the daily drive and long out-of-town trips.

In choosing the right vehicle, do not merely focus on the trends. Always consider your purpose in buying one and how it performs in real life. A sports car may look good at a glance but its price tag can be too much for you. Or perhaps, a compact car is enough for your small family. Remember. Your needs are different from other car buyers so, think carefully before making that big purchase.

Where to buy a car?

With the rising demand for automobiles since the global pandemic hit in 2019, owning a car is more important than ever. Buying is also easier since you can browse different social media pages for cars for sale or call your local dealership shop for a viewing appointment. Yes, this is very convenient, especially for people who need to multi-task all the time. Unfortunately, some people also use technology to do their dirty work and scam people.

You can avoid the drama by going to a reliable car dealer with a good track record. This way, you are assured you get what you have paid for and avoid going to the police station to file complaints against a bogus seller. Automart.Ph is one of the leading car dealers in the Philippines for repo cars, offering both high-quality vehicles and good customer service. You can read great reviews from past buyers on Facebook and other online platforms to see what they say about the company. Or, browse through the online listings for available models to see which one suits you best.

Whichever seller you see online, make sure to do your research. Take note, camera filters and good photo captioning can be deceiving if you are not careful in your business transactions.

What is the process of buying a car as an OFW?

If you are an Overseas Filipino Worker, here is the process of buying a car in the Philippines. Follow the steps to make your car shopping escapade easier. Take note that some sellers may ask for more requirements listed below. The steps may also be shortened if you get the vehicle through car payments instead of car financing.

Step 1: Choose your desired vehicle

Look for different models and brands. Note the features they offer, along with the price tag. Then, decide which one suits you best. Remember the tips above in choosing your automobile to see if you are getting the best deal in the market.

Step 2: Look for a co-maker

Unfortunately, an OFW cannot buy a car without a co-maker. It is a must because banks and car financing companies look for people living in the country within the contract period. It ensures that the borrower will not attempt to escape his financial obligation and take away the automobile before paying the full payment of the loan. Failure to find a co-maker usually leads to the disapproval of the car loan. It is why you need to find a trusted Filipino family member to get a car.

By definition, a co-maker is a person who pledges via a written contract to pay the loan in case the borrower fails to do so. In addition, a co-borrower can also help if the borrower encounters some issues in the requirements to get a car loan like insufficient income, age, and working abroad as an OFW. On the other hand, not everyone is allowed to become a co-maker. For single Filipinos, your parents and legitimate sibling can sign the contract. You cannot ask your girlfriend or boyfriend to do this. For married individuals working as seamen, your spouse living in the Philippines can act as your co-borrower. In finding one, make sure that you trust the person to avoid family conflicts in the future. Additionally, your family member will also work on the requirements on your behalf, and they must be reliable enough to do everything.

Step 3: Submit all the requirements

If you plan to pay cash for your desired vehicle, some car dealers only ask for a fully accomplished form and two valid government IDs, and you can immediately get the car. But if you opt to purchase it through car financing, more documents are required. It may include the complete filled-up application form, two valid government IDs with photo and signature of the borrower and co-maker like passport, driver’s license, etc., three months of payslip, recent proof of billing such as water, electricity, or internet connection, and employment contract. Depending on the bank or credit union, their agent will inform you if there are other requirements that you need to submit as an OFW.

Step 4: Wait for the car loan approval

Getting a car loan takes time, depending on the documents you submitted and the financing institution that you wish to apply to. With that said, you need to wait for several days until they finish verifying all your documents. Once done, they will let you know of the result, whether you are approved for the car loan, denied, or if there are some issues that you should settle first.

Step 5: Take home your car

This is the fun part! If you pay cash, you can instantly get the vehicle without the hassle of submitting the requested documents mentioned above. And if your car loan is approved? Congratulations! The bank will then call you for the signing of the contract together with your co-maker. You will also pay for the down payment and other fees before the release of your automobile. Once completed, you can now take home your dream car and start driving!

Working as an OFW is not easy. You need to sacrifice a lot of things to give your family a better future. That’s why it is important to reward yourself with something you can use for a period such as a new car. This will make all your hard work and those sacrifices worthy. The process may not be easy, but having your vehicle will make everything worthwhile.