When you buy a car whether it’s used or new, you want to feel assured that you will get some longevity with it. We expect our car to be with us for the next few years, and we generally hope that most of the time that the car is in our possession is problem free. One of the main ways in which we can ensure that is by thoroughly checking the quality and condition of used cars prior to making a purchase, and making careful considerations before signing on the dotted line. From here, we will look at some of the key things to look for when purchasing a used car so that you can get the best quality for your money.
Do Your Homework
Having an idea of the type of car that you want to buy, then going to a car dealership and just flat out buying it is the definition of foolishness. Prior to even considering buying a specific vehicle you need to conduct extensive research. This means heading onto various car comparison websites and getting an indication of what the “real” price for the vehicle should be based on factors such as age, mileage, etc. Obtain information on the various dealerships in your area and check their references to make sure that they have a reputation for satisfying their customers, rather than a track record for conning people out of money.
Obtain Several Quotations
You should look to obtain at least 3-4 quotations before committing to buying a specific car. Don’t jump at the first deal that you are given, even if it appears to be within the realm of what the price of the vehicle should be. There is always room for negotiation. The additional benefit of doing this is that it lets the dealers know that they have some competition for your money. If they know that you are considering taking your business elsewhere, they will be more likely to reduce their prices and make you a deal.
Do a Thorough Check of the Car’s Quality and Condition
When you are seriously considering buying a particular vehicle, it is important to conduct a comprehensive check of both the interior and exterior of the car. If you don’t consider yourself as someone who knows a lot about automotive technology, you can either download a checklist from the internet that outlines what you need to look for or you can hire a professional mechanic to help you by giving the car a once-over.
From an exterior perspective, things such as the car’s paint job, any scratches, any window cracks and any rust all need to be identified. Inside the car, you should check the furnishings and ensure that all of the features (radio, a/c, etc) work as they should do. It’s also important to test the lights of the vehicle and browse around inside the hood to ensure there are no noticeable faults or issues. Ensuring vehicle quality is paramount when buying a new car. The last thing you want to do is have to call up Lemon Law PA almost immediately after purchasing your car because it has broken down.
Think About the Best Time of Year to Buy
Many people don’t realize this, but sometimes of year are actually better for purchasing a used car than others. Why? Used car dealerships are businesses and businesses have targets and quotas to meet in terms of car sales. As the quarter end approaches, the pressure is ramped up. As such, the end of the months of March, June, September and December are good times to bag a good deal. This is not applicable if purchasing from a private seller of course.
Consider the Vehicle’s Age and Warranty
Obviously a used car does not have the same manufacturer’s warranty on it as a brand new vehicle. That said, many warranties nowadays last for as much as five years or more so depending on the specific age of the car you are considering, you may have some amount of coverage with it. This is worth bearing in mind for instances where for example, you are considering purchasing one of two vehicles and one has a warranty and the other does not.
Make a Checklist for What You Need
A good practice whenever you buy a vehicle is to make a checklist about what you need from a car. Depending on whether you just want a car to use occasionally, a car to make school runs, or a car to embark on long road trips, you will be looking at very different specifications. Write everything down in terms of what you want to get out of the car, and what features you would like it to have. Do you need a large trunk? Do you hope it’s an eco-friendly vehicle? What about the whole petrol vs diesel debate? All of these things are important.
Don’t be Afraid to Negotiate
People that work in car dealerships are accustomed to people negotiating car prices with them. As a matter of fact, it is almost expected. If you don’t ask, you don’t get and when trying to negotiate a better price with a car dealer, the worst thing that they can say is no. There are several strategies that you can utilize in order to try and obtain a better price. One is to benchmark the price of that vehicle against quotations you have received elsewhere. Another is to use factors such as the vehicle’s condition, or any minor problems, flaws and imperfections as bargaining chips for lowering the price.