Tips for buying a used car

There are few things in the world better than the thrill of getting a great deal on a used car. The joy can just as quickly turn into sorrow however, as the slow realisation that you’ve made a huge mistake set in. Here are a few tips that can help you avoid getting stuck with a lemon.

Do your research
People tend to read up on their next mobile phone purchase more than they are likely to research a new car. Always do a quick online search on the car you’re interested in, and read what other people think of it. Chances are there’s someone somewhere with valid reasons on why you should or shouldn’t buy it. It helps to know exactly what you’re getting into instead of risk getting nasty surprises in the future.

Decide on the exact model that you want - there’s no such thing as knowing too much. This gives little to no room for the salesman to take you for a ride and if you want to really get clued up, turn up with a copy of Motor Trader under your arm.

Cheap or too cheap?
It may be hard to believe, but overpaying for a used car can be the least of your worries. Owners that are more likely to face issues aren’t usually the ones who overpaid for their cars, but are those who happily accept large discounts for one. If a car is going cheap, ask why. It’s not charity, that’s for sure.

Always know the market price of the car you want, and be ready to pay as much as you can for the best one you can find. There are very few genuine bargains out there, so don’t count your luck on finding one. Just remember the old saying - if a deal looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Don’t go alone
Why? Because you might be blinded by lust, that’s why. Find a car that you’ve always wanted and you’re more than likely to show your excitement to the dodgy salesmen, who will only see you as a big Dollar sign. They will then conveniently forget to mention the car’s flaws as you drool your way into the office, all ready to sign the cheque right there and then. Ka-Ching!

Bring a friend then, or better yet, the old ball and chain. They’re much less likely to go gaga over the car than you are, and having an extra pair of alert eyes by your side can only be a good thing. Besides, if they can to talk you out of buying it, it’s probably not such a great deal in the first place.