How to Buy a Used Car

Buying a car is an exciting and intimidating experience. If you have never purchased a vehicle, you might have no idea where to begin. Buying a car is actually quite easy, but it does take some research. Your best bet is to determine the make and model of the car you want, understand the approximate sales price of the car, know the value of your trade in, and be aware of your financing options. If you have a firm understanding of what you want and your financial qualifications, you should have no trouble buying a car.

Many people opt for a used car. There are numerous benefits to buying used. Cars depreciate in value pretty quickly. This means the value drops as soon as someone makes the purchase. You can avoid a great deal of this depreciation by buying a car that is a year or two old. Many dealerships are offering certified used cars. This means you get a used car with some guarantee of its quality, making the purchase of a used car a smarter decision than ever before.

Compare Prices

The first thing you should do when purchasing a used car is compare prices of several different makes and models from several different sources. This helps you narrow down the cars available in your price range. Remember, by buying used, you are able to afford higher quality cars than if you were buying brand new. You can also consult the Kelley Blue Book under the “What Should I Pay For A Used Car?” section to get an estimate of the car’s value based on its year, mileage, and condition.

Have the Used Car Inspected

Once you have chosen a vehicle, consider having it inspected.our regular mechanic might be willing to do this for free, but most will charge you a small fee. Having an expert opinion from a third party can really put your mind at ease when purchasing a used car. There are also websites that will research the car’s history for you. You enter the vehicle identification number (VIN) and the site runs a background search on the vehicle. The sites do this for a fee, but a small investment will give you great peace of mind if you are thinking of investing a significant amount of money in a used car. Remember, the dealership is unlikely to let you know any more than what they are legally required to share with you. It is important to understand what you are buying.

Negotiate the Price

Now that you have chosen your used car, you can negotiate the price. There is usually a lot more wiggle room for negotiations for a used car than there is for a new vehicle. You can also haggle over your trade in value. If you are using your old vehicle to account for some of the cost of the newer vehicle, you need to understand its value. If you believe you are not being offered a fair trade in deal, consider working with another dealership. Remember, the car lot plans to resell your old vehicle and make a profit overall. This gives you room to haggle about the value of both your current and future vehicle. If you take time to become an educated consumer, you will have no problem learning how to buy a used car.

More Tips on Buying Used Cars