Top 6 Canadian Car Buying Apps

Top 6 Canadian Car Buying Apps

The recent explosion in the level of technology each of us can carry in our pocket has changed society in innumerable ways. From the way we go about making business decisions to the way we decide where to go to eat next, practically every aspect of our lives has undergone a radical shift with the arrival of high-powered smartphones that are available at affordable prices.

These days, the smartphone is ubiquitous. You’d be hard-pressed to walk into any coffee shop, supermarket, or subway carriage without finding at least a few people who are currently using their phones—and just try finding a place where nobody present has a phone in their pocket. No matter how you feel about the smartphone revolution, the fact of the matter is that it’s here now, and in all likelihood it’s here to stay

Somebody texting on a smartphone.

Smartphones aren’t just useful for messaging friends and looking at pictures of cats, however. Not many people are aware, but there’s actually an entire market out there of apps that have been specifically developed to help people secure buy cars and secure car loans.

Of course, for some of us no smartphone application is going to be able to beat the thrill of feeling the butterflies in your stomach as you walk across the parking lot towards the dealership’s office, and that’s okay. None of these apps are going to completely replace standard car dealerships anytime soon.

Still, though, they have their perks. Convenience is the big one, given that you’ll be able to weigh up your options without tramping all over town, going from lot to lot. Another plus is that because the app industry is so competitive, each of these companies need to compete against the rest in order to get any users at all. For the businesses, that’s a tough situation, but for the consumers it’s fantastic: the groups producing these apps are incentivized to make them as user-friendly as possible.

There’s a catch, though. Even though most of us are pretty tech-savvy at this point, navigating the App Store is incredibly difficult, because of the sheer volume of the products on offer, as well as the fact that every single app markets itself as the best the world has to offer.

That’s why we’ve decided to put together a list of the best car buying apps currently available in Canada. While it’s not an exhaustive list, it’s definitely a good place to start, and could serve as some background information for carrying out your own research as well.

Let’s get straight into the list. Here are our top 6 Canadian car buying apps.

1: CarGurus

The first app we’ve chosen to include on this list is one of our favorites, because it streamlines the entire research process that car loans require by only displaying dealership vehicles that are for sale. Some other applications struggle by including cars available from other sources, like people who are just trying to sell their second-hand Toyota.

Obviously, we don’t recommend going with a private seller, because there’s no regulation in place to protect the buyer. You’ll be lucky if you even get all of the required paperwork after striking a deal with somebody you met in a Tim Horton’s parking lot.

The dealerships that are displayed by the Cargurus app have all been rated or reviewed by customers, giving you the best idea possible of how their services work. There’s a badge that identifies dealerships who are authorized to sell certain brands, which makes comparing the various dealership options for any given car loan a piece of cake.

A piece of cake.

To make things even easier, every ad for a car on the app will calculate how much you’ll have to pay each month in terms of payments on the car loan, as well as letting you know if the model in question is being sold for higher than its regular retail price.

2: CarBuzz

CarBuzz’s main function isn’t to sell cars, but it deserves its spot on our list because of how well-built the car sales feature is. The primary function of the app is to keep automobile enthusiasts up to date with the industry, by providing day-by-day updates on which new models hare being released and developed, as well as high-level overviews of the general direction the automobile industry is going. If you like cars as a hobbyist, as well as somebody who’s trying to get ahold of a car loan, CarBuzz is likely to provide everything you’re looking for in one elegant, user-friendly package.

The app comes with a buyer’s guide that shows you everything you need to know about about a given model. You’re able to sort the overall list by price, and any CarBuzz articles that have been written about the car you’re looking at will be included in a handy link right in the listing.

Both old and new cars are presented along with a wealth of information, such as how well it has been built, how it handles, and what kind of fuel performance you can expect to get out of it, to mention just a few examples. When it comes to trying to find yourself a car loan, the amount of data CarBuzz offers on each model is hard to beat.

3: CarFax

CarFax is kind of a niche option within the car loan app market, but it’s worthy of inclusion because of how it handles one of the most risk-ridden situations a buyer is likely to face: trying to buy a used car.

From private sellers to dealerships, everybody is out to make a buck on their used automobile, and the last thing anybody wants is to be stuck with an over-the-top car loan because they weren’t able to do enough research on the vehicle they were actually buying.

CarFax offers users an extensive vehicle history report, which is available right in their pocket by virtue of the smartphone application. All it takes to carry out the search is either the license plate number, the VIN (vehicle identification number), and $39.99 per report.

Although it might sound a little pricey considering you’re only in the market for a car loan, what you’ll get in return is more than worth the expense, as the vehicle history report contains a wealth of information on everything from the car’s exact manufacturing circumstances to whether or not it has been involved in any accidents. Used car loans can be a minefield, but CarFax is an effective mine detector, and comes highly recommended by the majority of its users.

4: BRZO

BRZO is a kind of anomaly in the car buying app industry, because it doesn’t actually provide its own services so much as it piggybacks off of another company’s. That other company is Craigslist, in this case, and BRZO works by listing all of the information available from the car buyer’s on your local Craigslist page.

The app works well because Craiglist don’t have their own app—and the Craigslist website is notoriously ugly and difficult to navigate—as well as the fact that BRZO’s services have been tested and proven to be completely accurate.

There are a couple downsides. For one thing, the app is only available on the iOS market, meaning Android users looking to secure a new car loan are out of luck. For another, it’s not free, coming with a $9.99 price tag.

However, you are able to create your own customized searches in order to exclude any cars you wouldn’t want to buy anyway, and given the popularity of Craigslist for listing items for sale, you might well stumble across a steal you wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else.

5: Trovit Cars

Similar to BRZO, Trovit works by crawling thousands of online sources for cars and pulling them into one easy-to-read format. The app itself is free to use, and contains more than enough information in each listing for you to decide whether or not you want to opt for any given car loan.

The sellers of the ads listed in the Trovit app can only be contacted outside the application itself, but each ad comes with a link that will take you directly to the seller’s contact information, so it’s not really too much of a downside.

Easy to use, sleek, and pretty to look at, Trovit was clearly designed by developers who knew what they were doing. In terms of the options available to narrow down the kind of car loan you’re looking for, they keep it simple and stick to the basics, listing only location, price, mileage, make, and year. However, you can choose as many of them as you like, and there really aren’t many other things that are much more important to include, so the app functions perfectly well as is.

6: Kijiji

Like Craigslist, Kijiji isn’t car specific, and lists practically anything you can think of in the standard online classified ad format. There aren’t many ways to get your listing removed from Kijiji, so users looking to get themselves a new car loan will probably have to put up with advertisement quality that varies widely from case to case, as well as flakey sellers who can be difficult to establish regular contact with.

That being said, there are some really great advanced specifications users can apply in order to narrow down their search. In fact, Kijiji probably offers the most precise search available when it comes to the car loan app market in Canada.

As well as the classics, like mileage, price, and year, ads can also be sorted through by model, color, make, and even transmission and drivetrain. The app is free, and comes with an in-built instant messaging system, meaning you don’t need to navigate outside of it in order to make contact with a seller you’re interested in.

Summary

There they are: our favourite smartphone applications for providing assistance when it comes to buying a new car. Although the apps on the list above vary in terms of both how they’re used, whether they’re free or not, and which operating systems they’re available on, they all have one thing in common, which is that they make it convenient to sort through hundreds and hundreds of car listings in order to help you find the perfect model to secure a car loan for.

We recommend trying out as many of the free ones as you can at first, to get an idea of what’s standard for the industry, so that you’ll be able to appreciate the paid features even more.

For some people, apps are never going to replace the excitement of going in person and getting the whole car salesman experience, and that’s alright. The traditional model isn’t going anywhere. For others among us, though, we love making as much use of smartphone technology as we can, and any apps we can employ to help us out with our search for a new car loan is going to be an exciting prospect.

Cars in a dealership.

If you’ve been trying to get yourself a car loan but have been finding it difficult (or impossible!) because of a bad credit score, why don’t you try to get in touch with our experienced and knowledgeable team here at CarLoans.ca? We offer a range of different services designed to help people with less-than-optimal credit scores secure approval for a loan, and we’re sure that we’ll be able to help you out with your current financial situation in one way or another.

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