Long gone are the days when cars were considered a luxury, in today’s day and age, it is a necessity, but not everyone can afford to buy a new car. That is when the idea of buying used cars comes into the picture. However, buying a used car is considerably more complicated than buying a used one. There might be issues about the car pertaining to what is broken or what has been already fixed and how sustainable that is. Another major issue that demands attention is the warranty on the used car, and how reliable it is.
Now, buying a used car has come with a certain degree of risk, but if one knows how to select a car, identifies the factors to keep in mind and does enough research, then the experience of buying a used car can prove to be a good one.
How to Choose a Used Car
Budget: Even when buying a used car, a person ought to take into consideration all the factors he would have if he decided to buy a new car. This includes – the duration for which he plans to keep the car, the purpose of the car and his overall budget (inclusive of maintenance, operation, repair, and insurances).
Type of car: One needs to choose a car that suits his needs and lifestyle. The fact that the owner will have this car for a number of years means that future lifestyle changes should also be anticipated. For instance, if you work a 9-5 job in a city, then a used SX4 for sale in Bangalore is your best bet.
Research: Do thorough research on the types of cars that suit your lifestyle and select your dream car. Take opinions of reliable friends and family members, if needed. It is better if a person decides on buying a smaller, newer car than buying an older, bigger one in the same price range. A larger car will prove to be more expensive in the long run with higher maintenance costs. The best decision is to look for a mid-sized car which is about 2-5 years old and has obviously been treated well by its owner. Low mileage ones are your best bet. Heavily used cars indicate future trouble.
Keep in mind that analog odometers can be tampered with to reduce the mileage count and hence increase its price; check for tell signs such as wear and damage of exteriors and interiors before you buy the car.
Things to keep to consider before buying a used car
Test drive: Remember always to take a test drive before you buy the car. Drive the car under various conditions and on different types of roads. Test how it performs in heavy traffic. Also, check to see whether the steering wheel is loose or not or whether the gears shift smoothly. Properly check if the clutch and brakes function smoothly as well.
Exteriors- Check for dents, new paint or other things that might show the signs of an accident. Check the car frame for rust and wear, the exhaust and tailpipes or signs of any leaking fluid such as oil or brake fluid. Push down the corners of the cars to check the condition of the shock absorbers
Interiors- Check the lights, mirrors, and horns of the car. Keep in mind to check the condition of the car battery, seatbelts, and other essential parts. Make sure that the doors and bonnet and locks open and close smoothly.
For both cases hire a trusted mechanic and get the car checked.
Insurance, taxes, and loans: Be sure to confirm with the owner of the car about the insurance of the car, and its longevity. Check whether the road tax permit of the car is valid and whether or not it has a fit to drive certificate. Check the car papers and the bluebook value of the car. Be sure to know whether or not the car falls within the warranty period, if not adjust the price accordingly or look for another car.
Be sure to know whether there are any outstanding loans against the car, because even if you buy the car, in case of unpaid loans the ownership can easily be altered.
Authenticity: Make sure that the number on the car plate matches the number of original registration documents. The person selling the car should show legal documents proving his ownership.
After checking all these details, it is now time for a change in ownership. Things to ensure are:
• The car’s registration papers should be given, which should state the transfer of ownership
• All verbal promises are to be written down in the buyer’s guide
• Car’s maintenance record should be submitted
After this, you are done with all the steps that would ensure a smooth and good used car buying experience for you.
Buying a used car can be a hassle-free journey if the seller is honest and the buyer is alert. Hence know your needs, do your research, and your experience will be a piece of cake.