At times, buying a new car does not make sense for the family. Thanks to fast depreciation of new vehicles when they're driven off the lot, it has become a more economical choice to buy used cars. But how you can know that you're getting a great deal and at the same time, how you can be so sure that the car is still reliable?
In that case, following are quick checklist that can help you make a purchase wisely.
Tip number 1. Set a Budget
Decide on the amount of money you can afford. Whether you are looking to finance or buying the car outright. You have to take into account that used cars are typically financed at higher rate and you've got to factor it in the final price. Stick to your budget and do not buy one impulsively. Walk away and keep on looking if the car is not priced right. This is also the perfect time when you should practice your negotiation skills. Even if it is making you feel uncomfortable, many sellers are expecting to haggle a bit and it can save you big sum of cash.
Tip number 2. Research
Before you go to a car lot or meet private sellers, you have to research for the best models that's within your price range. Try to learn more about what prices people in your local area is paying so you know the average and if you have found a great deal. In addition to that, you have to do research for common problems of popular models and figure out what warning signs you've got to watch out for. Then after, you should take this time in shopping around.
Tip number 3. Test Drive
As soon as you found something that suits your budget and you like, it is now time to take it for a test drive. Are you comfortable in getting in and out of the car, do you have enough leg, elbow and head room? You'll be spending most of your time in the vehicle so be sure that you are comfortable inside it. In addition to that, you should take enough time in inspecting the care carefully. Look for signs of accident, check its tires and be sure that the lights, air conditioning and signals are working correctly.
Tip number 4. Get a Mechanic's Inspection
Even if the service engine indicator isn't on, used cars may have serious issues lurking under the hood. This is something that you may not be able to spot during routine test drive. Sellers must be willing to let you have the car checked out by your trusted mechanic otherwise, you've got to beware of some shady deals. If your mechanic found minor problems in the car, the seller should reduce the asking price but if the problem is quite serious, then you're better off in finding another one.