If you happen to be looking for a used car, it will be encouraging to note that you’re not alone. According to statistics, more than 40 million used cars exchange hands every year. You might be on a tight budget and buying a new car is out of the question. You can still get amazing deals for used cars if you’re savvy enough and you know what you’re looking for. There are just so many choices out there and it can be overwhelming to make a decision. That is why we’ve come up with this guide to help you with the process of buying a used car.
How Much Are You Willing to Spend?
The rule of thumb is if you’re taking out a loan to finance the purchase of the vehicle, the cost shouldn’t be more than 20% of what you take home as salary at the end of the month. If you’re on a tight budget, it might be wise to spend even less. That means you might have limited options when it comes to the choice of vehicle you buy. There are also the ownership costs to worry about which a lot of people tend to overlook when buying vehicles.
Have a List of Used Cars
To make the search easier, you should have a list of used cars that you’d love to look at. There is no denying that Toyota and Honda make the bulk of demand for used cars. The two brands are known for reliability and there is nothing to worry about even if you’re buying a used car. Ideally, you should have at least three cars in mind when doing the search. If you’re thinking of buying a vehicle that is less than five years old, you should consider one that certified-pre owned.
The internet has made it easy to search for information. Once you’ve identified the cars you’d love to buy, the next step will be to compare their prices. The price might differ based on a number of factors. The demand and location are some of the main factors that will have a bearing on the price of a used vehicle. There are sites that will give you an average estimate of what other people are paying for the car so that you can have an idea of how much you’re supposed to set aside for the purchase.
Locate a Local Dealer
It is much more convenient to work with a local dealer compared to shipping the car from another state. If you’re looking for used cars CT, it is imperative that you’re checking for cars that are close in proximity to where you live.
Check The History Report of the Vehicle
Make sure that you’re demanding a complete history report of the vehicle unless you’re buying from a close friend or family member. If the car has a bad history report, you will know what to do and you can move on to the next one if you feel it will be too much work.
Contacting the Seller
You should not run out immediately if you’ve found a car that might be a good deal. The first step is to get in touch with the seller. You’ll want to establish a relationship with the person first before anything else. If it is a private seller, make sure to ask why they’re getting rid of the car. If you’re working with a dealership, making a call will give an assurance that the car is still in stock so that you don’t waste your time traveling when it has already been sold.
You should never buy a vehicle without going for a test drive. You want to know how it feels on the road and if you’re comfortable driving it. Most dealers allow for up to 30 minutes of test drive which is more than sufficient to make a decision.
A car might appear to be in good shape but could have dozens of mechanical problems. You should have a mechanic with you for the inspection before making a purchasing decision. You can save yourself from a lemon as the mechanic might identify potential problems with the vehicle.
There is always room for negotiation when buying used cars. The inspection might identify potential problems that need to be fixed and you can use them as a bargaining chip. You’re also likely to get a good deal if you’re buying the vehicle in cash as dealers prefer these types of transactions.