Buy a new car
We aim to provide you with the data that you need to make an informed decision about your next used car purchase. Here are some common used car buying tips to help you to get the best-value vehicle for your investment.
Set a Budget
How much money that you allocate to spend on your next used vehicle is an important variable to the car buying equation. It helps you to focus your search for desirable vehicles that suit your needs and lifestyle. Even if you don’t want to share your budgeted amount with the dealer’s sales people, have the figure in mind as you go car shopping together.
Establish Specific Car Requirements
Know what you want in a vehicle. Used car dealership staff members and automated tools that are on used car sales websites can help you to find the right used car more efficiently if you have already decided that you need a sporty, two-door coupe versus a roomy family-style sedan.
Understand Car Market Value
A car’s ultimate price is derived from its fair market value. If you have a particular make and model of car that you want, research its current market value. Since you might not yet know the make and model of the vehicle that you will end up considering, bookmark a market value calculator such as the ones from RAC Cars or Parkers on your phone so that you can shop for your next used car with information and confidence.
Account for Total Ownership Costs
When you narrow down your choices of vehicles, make sure that you determine an estimated total cost of ownership for each vehicle. This will help you to make an equitable comparison among your choices of cars. If you assess the cars’ projected maintenance, insurance, taxes and petrol costs over a period of five years, you’ll be less likely to make an unwise, emotion-fuelled buying decision.
Check the Paperwork
If you have access to a used car’s paperwork, check it. While many used car dealerships do thorough background checks on the vehicles that they sell, it never hurts for a car buyer to inspect the paperwork themselves for added reassurance. Check the V5C registration paperwork against the car’s actual description and features. You can verify that your chosen vehicle has met road safety and emissions standards by checking the car’s Ministry of Transport or MOT certificate. A provenance check will uncover whether there are outstanding debts or financial obligations associated with the car. You’ll definitely want to evaluate the car’s service history if it’s available.
Know How To Test Drive a Used Vehicle
A car may look good on paper, but test driving a used vehicle can reveal if it’s really a gem or not. We recommend that you bring a friend along for the ride; a person who is knowledgeable about cars is preferable. When you drive the used vehicle, you want to make sure that the steering is stable and that it does not vibrate. Note such things as the colour of the smoke that comes out of the car’s exhaust, any lit up warning system indicators and strange noises that come from the car’s suspension. These could be signs of serious issues and maintenance bills in the future.
Decide How You’re Going to Pay for the Vehicle
Paying with cash will usually give you a better negotiating position. This can mean making a deal to purchase the car that you really want versus having to settle for your second choice of vehicle. Also, trading in another vehicle will naturally lower the amount of money that you will need to finance.