Is it time for you to buy a car? Although a brand new car seems like a great option because it comes with no history, a used car is still the best way to save a lot of money. You could save thousands of dollars on the purchase price of a used car, avoid paying high taxes and save hundreds on your car insurance every year! It just all comes down to finding the right used car for you!
Don’t look for the cheapest car. The “best deal” doesn’t mean the cheapest one. Your goal should be to look for a car in good condition for a reasonable price, particularly one that has been well-maintained and is accident-free.
Do a lot of research! Read reviews and consumer reports. Seek advice from family, colleagues and friends. Compare options. Gather gas consumption data and determine maintenance costs and upkeep. Your goal is to narrow your search to one or two models so you can become an expert on the make and models and end up comparing apples to apples.
Check a car’s history records BEFORE you check it out. You want to avoid
vehicles that have been flooded, were restored after a serious accident, have rolled-back odometers, were previously used as rentals or that come with outstanding liens. All you need is the VIN of the car to look up records through CarFax. Our trusted Auto Body Waukesha repair center will be happy to perform a pre-purchase inspection for you to make sure you’re getting a safe ride you can rely on.
NEVER give a deposit or sign a contract before the car is inspected! Bring the car to an ASE-Certified Technician you trust for an inspection and make sure they include estimates on how much it will cost to put the vehicle in perfect condition. You can deduct the total estimates from the listed value.
Avoid rushing the process of buying a car. Test drive the car as long as you can because some problems may only be caught when the engine is cold or when cruising at highway speeds, etc. You also want to take the time to negotiate the price of the car because there are other expenses you need to consider like the taxes and registration.
Be extremely careful when doing the paperwork. Check with the Vehicle Registration Authorities to make sure there are no registered liens against the vehicle and that the person who signs the Bill of Sale is the actual owner of the car. If buying from a dealer, read all the paperwork, especially the fine print, very carefully. Always get the details in writing! Do not rely on verbal promises.
A used car could last as long as a brand new one as long as you keep up with its maintenance schedule and avoid paying more than what the car is really worth from the start. Like any relationship, you’ll be happier if you do some soul searching on what you really want before you commit to a vehicle.