Buying a used car can be a good way to save money. However, before you buy a secondhand car, it’s wise to ask some questions and learn about the process and here 10 Factors to consider before you buy a used car.
You’ll want to know the history of the car, how old it is, and whether or not it’s been in a major accident. We have a list of some questions you should ask yourself before you buy a used car.
How much money should you spend?
First things first. If you’re looking to buy a used car, you need to know how much you can afford and how much it will cost.
You’ll also want to be clear on what kind of car you want. Are you looking for a small commuter car or a family minivan? Whatever car you choose, make sure it fits your budget and needs.
Also, understand that some used cars are more valuable than others. If you’re buying a high-end model, make sure you know what the lowest price you should pay is. You don’t want to overpay and not have enough money left over to have the things repaired or replaced that you’ll need.
You’ll also need to think about how much money you expect to spend on maintenance. Since it’s used, you may need more frequent oil changes and tire rotations because of it being thoroughly used by someone else before.
Also remember, you can do a lot of the legwork yourself. You don’t need to rely on an expensive mechanic to look at the car and tell you what you need.
Check the tires and suspension, so you know how well the previous owner maintained it, then find out what parts need to be replaced in order for it to run smoothly.
How old is the Car?
Most used cars are at least a decade old, so you’ll want to learn about the history of any car you’re considering.
If it’s more than 15 years old, it’s likely that it has some wear and tear that might not have been properly maintained by the previous owner.
Before buying any used car, inspect the engine, transmission and all fluids closely. Look for leaks or the dried remnants of leaks.
What shape is the Engine?
Make sure the engine is in a good shape. Ask about the car’s engine; does it have an oil change history? The engine is the most important part of any car so you’ll want to know how long it has been serviced.
If it has been neglected or has had an oil change at a low value, be wary and consider buying from someone else that cares about their car. You can also ask for receipts in case you need to return something that wasn’t repaired correctly.
How many miles does it have on it?
Knowing a car’s mileage history is one of the most important things to consider before buying your used car. It will tell you how much the previous owner drove it and whether they took good care of it or not.
If something goes wrong with the car after you buy it, you’ll know how much to expect to pay for repairs. You should also ask for proof of any maintenance work that was done.
Is there any rust or dents and how severe are they? (Consider this because a lot of damage can be done from rust, since with rust you’ll need to replace engine parts at some point.
How has the Car been driven?
You’ll want to know how well the previous owner drove the car. If they kept it garaged, you’re probably in good shape. But if they drove it in inclement weather, or let their kids ride in it with mud on their shoes, you may need to budget for a new paint job or for rust damage.
What is the condition of the interior and the exterior?
If it has been used as a taxi or limo you may have issues with leather seats and nice floor mats. If it’s a truck and has been used for hauling, you’ll want to know about the condition of the bed and the tires.
Any major accidents?
As with any used car, you’ll want to know if the vehicle has been in an accident. All of the damage can be seen if you take a look under the car after it’s been repaired. On a used car, check the brakes and tire condition.
Make sure that they work well and that you cannot detect any play in them. Ask about oil changes or any other maintenance work that needs to be done on the car, such as replacing transmission fluid or filters.
What service records are available?
Is the Transmission in good working order? (Having a transmission that’s not working properly can lead to costly repairs.)
Has it been properly maintained? (One of the most important things is to make sure the car you’re buying has records of proper maintenance.
If there are no service records, you’ll want to get all your questions answered. If there are, ask for proof.
What’s the Style of the Car?
What kind of methods did salesman use to sell you the car? (Some cars are minor repairs, while others are expensive purchases. You may want to take advantage of a used car dealer who is willing to work with you.)
Is there any easy way to compare the cost of buying a new and used car? (In some very small towns, it’s very difficult to find a used car dealer especially if you’re looking for one that doesn’t offer bait and switch tactics.
You may want to compare used car prices so that you’ll know if you’re getting a good deal or not.
What’s the current market value of the Car?
You should also be able to find an estimate of the car’s value, especially if it is older or has been in an accident. They may ask for information such as year, make, model, mileage and vin number.
Finally, if you’re looking to buy a used car and want to get the most value for your money, you’ll want to do some research to make sure you’re getting a good deal.
You’ll also need to know what makes up a good deal so that you can make sure you got one.
Make sure that the price is reasonable for the type of car and its condition. As well, check out competitors and other similar cars on the market, so that you can be sure that the price is fair.