|Written by Spill Guy|
When buying a used car, you may want to consider looking for a private seller rather than an established dealership. Individuals looking to sell a used card are less likely to apply high-pressure sales tactics, and may be willing to cut a more equitable deal. One the other hand, private sellers are less likely to offer warranties and service plans. Once you buy the car, you're stuck with any existing problems. Make sure you know what to look for before purchasing a used car from a private seller.
1. Search car ads from as many sources as possible, including dealer ads in newspapers and private ads in print and online classifieds to find out what's available in your area. Many dealers offer manufacturer-certified preowned cars; they generally charge more, but may offer a limited warranty.
2. Calculate how much money you have to spend. Take into account sales tax, registration costs and insurance.
3. After finding several vehicles that all fit your requirements, call sellers and ask to come take a look at their vehicle. You know you already like the make/model of the vehicle, so go look at the CONDITION. Are the tires worn? Is the engine wet on the underside? Does everything work on the vehicle? Has the vehicle ever been in an accident?
4. Makes and models: Choosing prospective makes and models of vehicles can be a tiring and frustrating process, but if you want a car that will last more than a month, there are some simple steps you can take to ensure your purchase will be a wise one. Look around you on the highways and parking lots. If you see a certain vehicle in abundance on the roads, it usually means the car has a good track record and it stays on the road longer.
5. Before buying; have the car inspected by a trusted mechanic. She can let you know if the car will need expensive repairs soon. A car at this price will often have flaws, make sure they're small and inexpensive if possible. Let the mechanic know that you're using the car as "transportation". Often the mechanic will advise you as to whether he thinks the car will meet your needs or if it is a lost cause. The inspection will cost about $75, but is essential, or else you might get a $1000 lawn ornament soon after buying:). If the seller will not allow you to have it inspected, walk away.
6. Ask the owner about the car's history. Has it been repaired after an accident? How long has he or she owned the car? Why is the vehicle being sold? Where has the car primarily been driven (city, highway, off-road)? The owner should be open and forthright about such questions, and not give evasive or noncommittal answers.