Purchasing used cars instead of new vehicles is a great way to save money, whether you’re looking for a starter vehicle for your teenager or a second automobile for the family. Before signing on the dotted line and bringing your new baby home with you, you’ll want to ask a few questions to make sure the car is the best value for your budget.
1) Is it a Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle?
Used cars that have minimal miles on them and are just a few years old typically qualify for certification as a pre-owned vehicle. These autos are tested and given warranties, which means that if anything goes wrong, you won’t have to pay an arm and a leg to have it fixed.
2) Does it Come With a CARFAX History Report?
Not all of the inventory on the lot will come with a CARFAX history report, but if the company provides one, you should take them up on it. This document will reveal any known accidents the car was involved in, as well as any maintenance or repairs that were performed. You can use this information to better inspect the vehicle – especially the areas that may have been hit by another driver.
3) What is its Kelley Blue Book Value?
The Kelley Blue Book is one of the most reliable resources you’ll have at your disposal when shopping for used cars. Use this tool to find the approximate value of the vehicle you are considering buying. Make sure you type in the make, model, year, and mileage to get an accurate assessment. If the automobile you are interested in is priced too high, you can use the Kelley Blue Book value to negotiate a better deal.
4) What is the Condition of the Automobile’s Interior?
It’s always important to look at a vehicle’s interior. If you find that it has an unpleasant odor, a great deal of stains, or any rips in the fabric, the car was probably not being properly taken care of. From that information, you can only imagine what was done to the engine and brakes.
5) Are Repairs Needed?
Ask the dealer if there are any known repairs that need to be made. When buying used, it’s likely that you’ll have to fix something. Knowing what repairs need to be made can help you decide if the purchase is worth it. Certain items you can determine for yourself. For example, turn the heat on to see if it works and try opening and closing all of the windows.
6) What Kind of Gas Mileage does the Vehicle Get?
Finally, ask the sales representative what kind of gas mileage the particular car you’re looking at gets. If he or she doesn’t know, try looking up the make and model online to see an average. Buying a gas hog may save you money upfront, but in the long run, it could bleed you dry.