Buying a used car is full of crucial choices. You need to decide on the model, the right insurance, the make and financing options. Whether it’s your first time or you have bought a car before, the process is always demanding.
Remember, this is a substantial financial transaction after buying a home. So you must take caution. Price is the common factor for most buyers, but there is more to consider. Buying a used car can feel like a lesser option compared to a new car.
However, there are several benefits to purchasing a used car. They include:
- Less depreciation and a lower price
If your budget is a concern, buying a used car is a good option. You’ll avoid initial depreciation, which makes your vehicle lose about 30% of the initial price. The car will depreciate but less quickly than its first couple of years.
More so, you won’t incur extra fees for customisation or added features. You might not get the desirable features you want, but you’ll definitely save some bucks.
- Variety of options
Buying a used car throws you into a world of endless choices. You can even choose a 2010 model. This means you can browse a huge spectrum of vehicles that includes the older versions.
- You can gauge performance
You can check the previous performance of a used car and the general information you want. Consumer reviews will give you invaluable information before buying a car.
6 Tips to buying a used car safely
If you’re looking for a used car, you’re not alone. About 40.8 million used cars exchange hands yearly. But with tons of choices on the market, finding the best car can be challenging.
Fortunately, we’ve created a list of essential steps to help you buy your perfect used vehicle in a seamless process.
- What is your budget?
Vehicles do not come cheaply. And just like anything else, having a budget will help you get the car you need. You could consider taking a loan or use your savings to secure a used car of your choice.
Having a budget will also help you narrow down your choices based on the model, make and even features. The budget should also include the extra costs of owning a vehicle, such as shipping cost, insurance premiums, registration and servicing cost.
A used car may need extra attention like new tyres or fitting some new features. It’s also advisable to set some funds aside for unexpected repairs and maintenance.
And if you opt for a loan, ensure it’s not more than 20% of the car’s value.
- Create a list of target vehicles
Used cars come in various models. You can choose to buy a car that’s less or more than five years old. Consider more than one brand to help you save more money. Toyota Camry and Honda are great used cars.
However, they come at a higher cost than a Ford Fusion. That’s why it’s good to create a list of three car brands that meet your needs and budget. Then, narrow your list based on the specs you want and other configurations.
Research on different brands, pros, cons and maintenance needs of your dream car.
- Why do you need a car?
Having a car gives you comfort. But why do you want to buy it? Do you want to have an easy time going to work or is it just a family car?
If you want to run errands, a small and light car can be a great option. Ensure it saves you on fuel consumption and is easy to maintain. If you’re looking for maximum safety, heavier and larger vehicles have a higher crash-test rating.
Be attentive to how a car stops, accelerates and rides.
For a family car, safety is the top priority. More so, ensure it has ample storage. If children are involved, your needs move from being stylish to something that can accommodate prams and buggies.
Cars can become inherently chaotic in certain environments. Some safety features like collision detections, blind-spot monitors and reverse sensors come in handy.
- Contact the seller
If you’re buying the car from an individual, contact them to establish a relationship. Verify the information about the vehicle and get to know whether the vehicle has any mechanical issues. Sometimes, the seller can mention something that wasn’t in the ad.
If things go well, you might set up an appointment for a test drive. This helps you assess the car’s condition. You can check if it’s easy to get in and out of the vehicle without banging your head.
Test drives gives you a chance to check if there’s enough legroom, headroom and hip room. How is the visibility and the seating position?
You may also request the service records to know if the car had regular scheduled maintenance and servicing.
- Negotiate a good deal
Most buyers dread the negotiation process. Talking numbers should not be dramatic or traumatic. Having a budget is the first pointer to guide you when making a deal. Decide how much you’re willing to spend on a preowned car.
But avoid laying your figure first in the discussion. But if you must, make a lower opening offer.
- Consider shipping services
Alternatively, you can buy the car online, which is less stressful. With electronic signatures, you can purchase the car in the comfort of your home.
Shopping online allows you to search for cars in your local neighbourhood or thousands of miles away. Once the buying process is over, the next step is to have your car delivered.
However, most car dealers do not offer shipping services. And those who do, charge high costs that might affect your budget. The best thing is to search for a reliable moving car moving company like CarsArrive Auto Relocation for ultimate and safe delivery.
Moving companies are equipped with the right machines, trucks and even flatbeds to transport vehicles. Be sure to read reviews of relocation companies to get valuable information about their operations.
The bottom line
Buying a used car should not be a daunting process. If you consider these six factors, you’ll celebrate your purchase. And above all, pick a preowned vehicle with fewer miles.
Photographs courtesy of motorverso.com