Things to Avoid When Buying a Used Car
Most people don't consider their car as an investment. Other than providing daily functions, most cars have credible resale value. But, it is not uncommon for one to get swindled when buying a used car. If you don't display caution while purchasing a used car, you might end up biting off more than you can chew. Maintenance and fixing any issues will make your car more of a hassle than an investment. Read on to avoid these practices when buying a used car.
Not Doing Your Research
Some cars are notorious for having troubles from the time they leave the factory. As a result, you'll find many listings for cars that have only been in service for a couple of thousand miles. Their prices are competitive as well, making you think they'll be a good investment.
Stay clear of these cars. Sellers are trying to get them off of their hands to cut their losses. When looking at a certain car in a listing, always look for information about them. The manufacturer may have released a statement regarding a defect, or you'll find discussions in online forums about common problems associated with them.
Don't Just Look at the Price
When searching for listings, most buyers will only look at the price tags of cars to make a decision. Often you'll see undervalued deals for various sedans, crossovers, and SUVs. If a deal is too good to be true, the chances are that there is definitely something wrong with it.
Always contact the buyer to confirm any issues if they aren't mentioned in the listing. Some issues may be difficult to resolve than others and are not worth the trouble.
Signing Finance Documents without Reading
This is a recurring problem in many used car dealerships. Their salesmen are professionals with experience in negotiation tactics to convince buyers into signing a car financing agreement their dealership provides.
If you're considering it, then always go through it thoroughly. Take your time and read every page of the document as they may include exorbitant administrative and processing fees or extend warranties on an otherwise reasonably priced car.
Foregoing Inspection Before Purchase
Once you come across a credible listing, in-person inspection is the next step in buying a used car. Most buyers just inspect the car on a surface level and call it a day. Don't make the same mistakes they do.
Start your inspection by test driving the car. Be on the lookout for any creaks and noises, handling troubles, or the car's response when accelerated.
Some sellers get their codes cleared from a car mechanic before they sell their cars, so you won't see any check engine light. You can use an OBD2 scanner that plug into a port normally located under the driver's side of the dashboard. You can run a scan on the car's onboard computer to bring back the codes. They are relatively inexpensive and pair with your smartphone.
You can use them to figure out if the seller is trying to hustle you into buying a lemon or reduce the asking price of the car.
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