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Agriculture is constantly evolving, which is why AgDirect® works to help you make the right decision for your operation when it comes to financing your next tractor, combine or ag equipment.

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Planning Your Next Equipment Purchase

Use these checklists before you buy

Published on 9/30/2021

Machinery purchases are a major capital commitment and one of the biggest financial decisions you can make for your operation year to year.

The right equipment investment can improve processes, productivity and ultimately increase your bottom line, but it involves weighing lots of options including where to buy, what to buy and how much to spend.

That’s why AgDirect created the following checklists to help guide you in your decision-making. Here are some key questions and considerations to think about as you plan for your next equipment purchase.

equipment purchase checklist infographicAssess your current equipment

If you’re thinking about making an equipment upgrade, completing an audit of your existing equipment is a good place to start.

Ask yourself these fundamental questions about your machinery costs and performance to help you justify your next purchase and identify your short- and long-term goals.

    •  Does your current machinery perform reliably under a variety of field conditions?
    •  Are you spending valuable time and money on unscheduled maintenance or repairs?
    •  Are you looking to increase productivity or capacity?
    •  Can you cut costs by downsizing?
    •  Does your equipment meet the requirements – like horsepower or towing capacity – of the jobs you need to complete?
    •  Will different equipment be needed in the future to accommodate additional acres or crop types?
    •  Is newer technology available to help you operate more safely or efficiently?

Consider your budget

After you’ve evaluated your machinery line-up, it’s important to set a realistic budget and distinguish your equipment needs vs. wants before you buy.

Completing the following steps and involving trusted advisors such as your dealer, accountant or lender early in the buying process can help you set expectations about your purchasing power and what you can comfortably afford.

    •  Review production and financial records to assess your working capital.
    •  Conduct research to compare costs and establish a reasonable price point.
    •  Reach out to your local dealer for additional information about pricing, product specifications and trade-in values.
    •  Evaluate opportunities to share equipment or provide custom services to offset costs.
    •  Consult with your accountant or tax adviser to discuss tax benefits and liabilities.
    •  Contact your lender to learn about the latest interest rates and your loan and lease options.
    •  Factor in additional costs that may not be covered in the initial price such as transportation costs or buyer’s fees.

Find the best deal

Once you’ve established a budget, you’re ready to move forward in your search for the best equipment deals. There are many avenues buyers can explore including dealerships, auctions – both in-person and online – as well as machinery listed by private party sellers.

Choosing between new and used equipment will depend on availability as well as your budget, preferences and individual needs for your operation. While each option has its pros and cons, here are some important general questions to consider.

    •  Is a warranty that comes with new or near new equipment important?
    •  Are you more comfortable working with a dealer than buying at auction or a private seller?
    •  If you buy at an auction or from a private seller, is the seller reputable or can you trust you will get what you are paying for?
    •  Can the seller guarantee the equipment will be free and clear of any liens at the time of purchase?
    •  Can you inspect the equipment in-person?
    •  When will the equipment be available for pick-up and how quickly can you finalize the sale?
    •  If buying used equipment, are service records or maintenance logs available?
    •  Will your purchase qualify for financing?  If so, should I purchase or lease?

AgDirect offers purchase, lease and refinancing options for both new and used equipment purchased at the dealership, at auction (both in-person and online) or through private party sellers.

Our experienced team will guide you through the financing process and work with you to help you select the best options for your next tractor, combine, sprayer or other ag equipment.

Get started with AgDirect equipment financing today by asking for AgDirect at the dealership, applying online, locating your nearest AgDirect territory manager or contacting the AgDirect financing team at 888-525-9805.

Learning Center

Agriculture is constantly evolving, which is why AgDirect® works to help you make the right decision for your operation when it comes to financing your next tractor, combine or ag equipment.


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