Tips on buying a used car

Posted on 12 July 2011 by Tony Santos

Buying a used car can be a stressful experience – unless you know a fair bit about cars and what to look out for in order to avoid getting ripped off, there is always a chance of getting sold a complete dud by a dishonest vendor. With that said, buying used cars often offers much better value for money than buying a new car straight off the lot, and as long as you’re smart about it there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to make a nice saving. So, if you’re considering getting your hands on a new ride, here are a few things that will help you along the way:

1) Don’t be afraid to ask questions, regardless of if you’re dealing with a business or private seller. If they can’t answer important questions, such as about the car’s maintenance history, get suspicious.

2) Do ask to take the car to a mechanic (remember that independent mechanics are cheaper!) for a check-up before committing to buying a used car, especially in cases where you’re unsure about the sellers honesty level. If they won’t let you, I would walk away. A good seller will have done this already and will gladly produce the report.

3) Do compare prices for cars of the same make and model online and at local car lots to make sure that you’re getting a good deal.

4) Do remember that prices are never fixed in a car deal. I am yet to come across a seller who hasn’t thought of a price, and added at least 10% to it in order to create a bit of wiggle room as they fully expect the buyer to haggle.

5) Don’t let the seller rush you into making a deal. If you’re the slightest bit unsure, walk away and think about it before committing your money or signing anything. The seller may say that there has been a mindboggling amount of interest in the car and that it will be gone the second you leave if you don’t buy it, at which point you need to remember what role he or she is playing in your interaction – the seller.

6) Don’t buy from remote petrol stations and car parks. If the seller proposes to meet outside of his house, you should have alarm bells ringing in your ears – the car is most likely stolen. The safest bet is to buy a car from the address that’s listed in its registration documents or from a dealer who has a legal right to sell the car.

7) Do take somebody with you when buying a car, don’t go on your own. You’ll have a witness with you should something go wrong; and a second opinion is always worth a lot, even if the person is not a car expert.

Buying a used car is meant to be a pleasure and delight – getting a bargain is always a pleasure, isn’t it? Being careful and sensible will make sure the purchase doesn’t turn from sweet to sour in the end.

Related Posts

Comments are closed.