Finding a good used car is always a challenge, but never impossible. If you go in with the right mindset, follow the right practices, ask the right questions, you will end up buying the right used car. Here are 5 tips that can help you choose the right used car for you.
1. Keep a Budget in Mind
The first thing you should know is your maximum budget. Be ready to stretch the budget a little for other expenses like state sales tax, documentation fees, licenses, and other various fees. You need to also consider factors like insurance, maintenance, repair, and operation costs. When shopping for a used car, an enthusiastic salesperson might encourage you to buy a larger car out of your budget. Instead of getting carried away, stick to your budget.
2. Research Your Purchase
After selecting a few models, you need to determine how realistic the deal is. You can get the valuation of the car done by an expert. Don’t purchase the car, just because it looks good. There are several other aspects that need to be considered, like the age of the car (manufacturing year), its mileage, and many more things. Consider buying a two or three year old car, but not more. Cars that are two or three years older have gone through a major chunk of depreciation, but are more likely to be in good condition. If you purchase a three or five year old cars, you might pay larger amounts on repairs and maintenance.
3. Take a Look
This can be tricky. The condition of every component in the car matters, even if it seems like you’re only purchasing a single piece of used machinery. The outer façade of the car might look clean and polished, but you need to look under the hood to see what’s underneath. A good idea is to take a mechanic or a friend who knows more about cars to the dealership. Check the interior and pay attention to the seat and its mechanisms, the roof liner, the air conditioning, the electrical components and lights, for any signs of rust perforation and airbag deployment. Don’t forget to check the exterior for paints and dents that are telltale signs of an accident.
4. Get The Car’s History
You need to get the car history including its service history. The car’s history will tell you if the car had an accident in the past or if there is a problem with the title or ownership. The service history would tell you about major repairs done and any recurrent problems.
5. Drive It
Driving the car is the best way to check its condition and oddities. You need to ask an expert for their opinion of the car and the true value of it. When you test drive the car, pay attention to any vibrations or unusual noises. Drive the car on different roads for the best judgment. Spend time pushing buttons to check the air conditioning, wipers, lights, and other electrical systems. Also, pay attention to the condition of the tires.
Now that you know the secrets of selecting a right used car, go ahead and negotiate the best price and be a proud owner of a good used car.