Buying a car can be a stressful process. Due to the development of dedicated internet sights, national dealerships, private sellers and local independent garages, the amount of choice available to buyers has never been higher.
Navigating your way through all the options available can be challenging, but regardless of where you buy a used car from, there are some key things you must remember. To help you through the process and point out some of the benefits of buying a used car, I&K Motors have put together this helpful guide.
Test as many different cars as possible
This may sound obvious, but it’s vital. Whenever you’re buying a car, new or used, you should test as many options as possible.
Any car is a significant investment, and you need to be sure you’re going to be happy with what you buy. Through testing multiple options, not only do you learn about a variety of cars and what might be best for you, but you gain valuable information.
If you go out and buy the first used car you test drive you could be missing out on some great alternatives. Also, the more cars you test and get to know, the stronger your negotiating position is when it comes to talking about price.
Through testing and looking at multiple options, you will get a sense of the average price for particular cars and will know when the asking price for a specific vehicle is too high.
You can save a large amount of money on a used model compared to a new one, and this is always going to be one of the key benefits of buying a used car.
Due to depreciation, a new car starts to decrease in value the moment is it driven for the first time. While a used car’s value will also decrease over time, it will be far less drastic than with a new car.
Research the car
It’s so important to research the cars you are interested in before buying. One of the benefits of a used car is that there will already be a large number of reviews available for you to read. Even with cars only a year old, there will still be a large amount of information available to you.
There will always be positive and negative reviews of cars online, so it’s important not to let the negative ones bring you down. All cars will have some negative views. However, it’s important to look out for faults which are consistently reported by owners. If this is the case, it may be time to look at other options.
Don’t be afraid of the choice
As mentioned, when buying a used car, it can seem a little overwhelming given the number of vehicles available. Try and think of this as a positive though and how it can benefit you. We have already talked about the improved position having multiple options can put you in when negotiating on price and the amount of information you can gain through research.
However, another benefit to buying a used car is the constant change in what’s available. You may well miss out on a vehicle you like, but countless used cars are going up for sale each day, so there will always be another option. Remember you have years of vehicles to choose from and a huge variety when it comes to price.
Ask questions when buying
When you find a used car that interests you and you’re happy with what you’ve discovered through your research, it is important to find out more information about the specific car. A good dealership, garage or private seller will be able to tell you about the history of the car and provide all the documentation which should come with it.
Things like its service history, number of previous owners and any history of mechanical issues or changes, should be communicated to you when you ask. If you find the seller is not forthcoming with this information, it could be a red flag.
Check the car over
It never hurts, even after asking the seller about the car, to check it over yourself. With any used car, there are some critical areas you must check before buying. Some can be done in person when testing the car, and others require some time on the computer.
In person, it’s vital to check for signs of rust underneath the car. This could become a serious problem over time and is difficult and expensive to fix. Checking the oil is another area which is critical to examine.
While it’s easy to fill the oil up before the car is tested, any car which has a low oil level when you check it should make you think twice before going any further with purchasing. It’s impossible to know how long the oil has been low for and what damage this could have done to the engine.
Without checking the oil, you could unknowingly be buying a car which has been running with little to no oil for a while and whose engine is severely damaged.