Purchasing a car is a big deal; it’s a big investment and one that you’ll most likely have for many years. But it can be tricky knowing how to go about it. Alongside all the vehicle options, how do we know whether we should buy a car that’s new or used?

Although you may not have considered it, or you may not have considered it an entirely viable option, buying a used car can be advantageous in many ways to you as a driver and to your wallet. To help you with this endeavor, we’ve written the following blog.

Buying Used Cars 101

The car market has always been booming; our lives are crazy busy, jam-packed with event after event, errand after errand, and we’re constantly needing to get from A to B quickly. That’s why car sales are often in the millions of dollars each year.

But did you know that more and more people are turning to used cars instead of brand-new ones? Used cars can be just as reliable as the new models, not to mention they’re often a lot more affordable.

As a customer, you can turn to dealerships to buy a used car or you can purchase one through private means, like buying one from a friend or colleague, for example. Regardless of how you go about doing so, there are a few things you should do before handing over your credit card.

Tip 1: Research, research, research!

Gathering as much information as you can about something, whether it’s what schools to apply to, vacation spots, or used cars, is an important step that everyone should take – especially because most of us aren’t overly knowledgeable about cars and all the rules and regulations that surround them.

You want to make sure that you’re getting the best bang for your buck. Look up different models, their features, and the asking price. Keep in mind that the inherent value of a used car decreases by approximately 20% after the first year they are used – this is known as depreciation. It’s a phenomenon that occurs in the housing market as well.

Tip 2: Go see the car.

Buying a car isn’t like shopping for clothes online – you shouldn’t just pay the money without assessing it in person. The photo posted may be outdated or even edited to make the car look better than it is.

At car dealerships specifically, you’ll be able to test the drive the car. Getting a feel for how it works on the road, its setup, how comfortable it is, and seeing if there’s any damage is important too.

Tip 3: Ask questions!

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You’re not being bothersome! You have the right to ask as many questions as you want as a potential buyer.

Why Buy from a Dealership

If you choose to purchase your car through a private seller, that’s perfectly fine. However, they may not be able to tell you everything about the vehicle or, they may choose not to which can cause you problems down the road. There are no defined rules in place, which makes such a purchase riskier.

On the other hand, buying a used car through a dealership can be a lot less stressful. Listed below are some of the major benefits of doing this:

  • Saves money. You’ll still be able to find a great car for a more affordable price than a brand-new one.
  • Quality. Dealerships rely on word of mouth and reputation. Their products must meet a certain standard to sell the car in the first place. The car also must undergo testing for damage and be repaired too.
  • Test drives.
  • Car history. All reputable dealerships will be able to provide you with a report on the car’s history.
  • A secure process. Just like buying a new car or a new house, you’ll need to make a down payment. This shows that you are serious and in turn, the dealerships are more willing to work with you.