Planning to buy a new car but don’t have an extravagant budget for it? Buying a used car can significantly reduce the amount of money you’d need to spend than buying a brand-new one. Here’s how you can ensure that you get the best deal when you choose a used car in your budget.
The first step in your used-car-buying process should be to have a fair idea of the value of the car you would like to purchase. Look up the prices online for any car that you have your eyes on, but make sure you have as many details about the car as possible. This includes the make, model, year, mileage, options as well as the overall condition. The more information you put in, the closer you will be to knowing the car’s actual value. Use this value for any negotiation as a starting point. Knowing the price will also help indicate how anxious the seller is to sell their car. If the price is too high, the seller may not be too motivated to sell it, but if it’s accurately priced or priced below market value, it may be a good deal to checkout.
Inspecting the Car
A major indication of value is the condition of the car. A well-maintained vehicle will be near the top of the value chain, while a shabbily maintained one can be priced way less. Make sure you pay attention to the following:
- Is the car a comfortable fit for you? Check its front and rear seats
- Inspect every inch of the car – interior and exterior. See if there are any particular smells in the car after it has been running for a while.
- Inspect the engine thoroughly – check to see if there is oil on the engine which could indicate leaks or worse.
While you test drives the car, you’d need to do a serious evaluation, particularly of all the little things as well. These include:
- A thorough check on the car’s amenities – Does it have power seats, steering and windows that work properly?
- Check the sound system – does it meet your expectations?
- Test both heat and air conditioning – It may not seem like a big deal now, but when the scorching heat is upon you, you’ll be thankful you took the extra time to inspect.
- Warning lights – Carefully check whether there are any warning lights which are on and flashing. Chase the owner or dealer for any required maintenance.
- How does the car handle? Inspect it under high-stress situations, such as stop and go, high and low speeds, sudden acceleration/deceleration, hard turns and jerky stops. Get the car up to at least 55 miles an hour since some things, like a bent rim would only be noticeable at lower speeds.
- Engine sounds – A smooth hum is a good sound but any sputtering or knocking can indicate serious underlying problems.
A pre-purchase inspection can cost a $100 dollars or more but is money well spent to avoid you any hassles in the future. Also, get a repair history on the car to know how well or ill-maintained is the vehicle.
With over 800 vehicles in our inventory, the Car Factory helps you choose the car of your dreams- brand-new or pre-owned! Schedule your test drive in our Miami or Hollywood locations online today at CarFactory.com or call (786) 406-6234!
Recommended Read: 6 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Used Car