5 Steps to Follow When Buying a Used Car
When your current vehicle is getting old and needs frequent repairs, it may be time to consider buying a new car. A new car is reliable; it will get you from point A to point B without the worry of breaking down. You will also find that you spend less money on car maintenance when you trade in your old car for a new one. If you are like many people, you may not want a brand new car or you may not be able to afford a brand new car. In this case, you can find a quality used car to replace your old one. Before you finalize your car purchase, there are a few things that you should do…
1. Do Your Research
Before you purchase a used car, you should do some research. If you have a few types of car in mind to purchase, you should compare them to figure out which would best suit your needs. There are several sites online where you can research vehicles, compare them, and read reviews from people who actually own the cars. If you already have a specific car in mind, you should get a CarFax report. This is a report that will let you know if the vehicle that you are considering buying has been in any accidents. If the accident caused enough damage, you could end up inheriting problems rather than buying a reliable car.
2. Make Sure You Can Afford the Vehicle
Before you sign on the dotted line at the dealership, make sure that you can afford the car that you are buying. If you don’t consider this, and you get in too deep, your car could be repossessed. It takes just a few missed payments before the lender will take possession of the car. Not only will this make getting around impossible, it will also have a very negative effect on your credit report. When determining how much money you can afford to spend, you should total all of your monthly bills and subtract that from your gross income. What you have left over is what you can afford. You should not only consider your monthly loan payments but also consider the money that you would need for gas and maintenance, car insurance costs, and annual taxes and registration.
3. Look Into Trade-In Options
Just because your current vehicle is no longer reliable doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to get money for trading it in. Sit down with your salesperson and find out how much money they would be willing to give you to trade it in.
4. Take it for a Test Drive
Since you are going to be driving the vehicle each day, you want to make sure that you will feel comfortable doing so. During the test drive, you should take the vehicle on your regular routes if possible. Drive to your work, your home, and to your child’s school. You want to see how the vehicle handles when you are driving on your regular route.
5. Have the Vehicle Inspected
Before you sign your paperwork and drive your car off the lot, you should have it inspected. You want to make sure that the vehicle is safe, and that there are no mechanical issues that will cause you problems in the future. Consider utilizing a company that will come out to offer car inspection assistance, so you know you’re getting a good deal.
Buying a used car is a big step. Before you sign the loan papers and get the keys to your new car, you should keep the above tips in mind.