Finding a used car can be quite a challenge. You are limited to a selection that’s only available in the used car market so you can’t really be picky with the model or color. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t get the best deal. If you know how to look, you can find a used car that you really like at a very reasonable price. In this article, we teach you ways to find a nice used car in your area.
1. Do your research
Before you go out on your search, do research first. Start by writing down the kind of car you would like and be ready for other alternatives. Check how reliable these car models are. You don’t want to end up with a lemon car.
Once you have decided on car models you want, research on places where you can find a nice used car in your area. Be prepared to go long distances. If it means getting the car that you want, then it’s worth it.
2. Consider low demand cars
Low-demand cars tend to be cheaper than in demand cars. So if you’re on a budget, your best bet is to find cars that are not in high demand. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should opt for really cheap cars. Some of them have really poor quality and are not worth buying. There needs to be a balance between price and desirability. You’ll be driving this car for many years so it should be something you like.
3. Consider CPO
CPO (certified pre-owned cars) are gently used cars that typically come with the warrant still. What’s great about these cars is that they have low-mileage making them less vulnerable to damages. The original buyer has already taken the biggest depreciation hit, and you get to enjoy a lightly used vehicle.
Car manufacturers are also likely to provide financing on CPO cars. This can help you acquire that used car at a really good deal.
4. Get financing
To be able to afford the used car you want, you’re going to need financing. Used cars may be cheaper than brand new but they still cost a considerable amount. You should already have a bank or loan institution in mind that can help finance your purchase.
When you have a bank to help finance your purchase, dealers will be more receptive to doing business with you. They might even give you a good deal on the car if it means you’ll buy it.
5. Speaking of dealers
Shop at a time when salespeople aren’t busy. This is so you can get all your questions answered. When salespeople are busy, they’ll only focus on sure buyers.
Also, try not to look too enthusiastic, especially when you’re eyeing a specific car model. If a car dealer sees you getting excited, they’ll take advantage of that. But don’t be a jerk either, no one likes to deal with one. Maintain a neutral attitude. The goal is to get the best deal possible on a used car.
6. Pay attention to the price
Dealers will try to distract you from the real price of the car by focusing on the monthly payments instead. Sometimes, you might end up actually paying for more due to high-interest rates or the loan being too long. You should focus on the total selling price and determine whether you are getting a good deal. If not, consider buying from another dealer.
7. Buy from a private party
Unlike car dealers, private parties are not experienced in the art of negotiation. In fact, they might even dread it. Consider looking for a used car from places like Craigslist or Facebook marketplace. You’re likely to get a better deal here since there is no overhead of a dealership. Ask if you can inspect the car and do a test drive before going through with the purchase.
Which of these tips did you find the most useful? Share your thoughts in the comments below.