Top 5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Buy a Used Car

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Since any car, even a used one, is a reasonably sized investment, you need to make sure that you are certain about your purchase before buying the car. If you find yourself considering purchasing a used car, then ask yourself the following questions. You will notice that most questions tend to lead to numerous related questions. You want the answers to everything listed below, as this information will help you make an informed decision.

Do I Want a Used or a New Car?

Start by asking yourself if you really want a used car instead of a new one. New cars will have a full warranty, be in great shape, and have no mileage on them so far, but cost more. Used cars offer significant savings, let you avoid investment losses from depreciation, and let you get more features for your money. Used cars tend to be a better choice for those on a budget or those who do not want to worry about depreciation. After you confirm you want to buy a used car, ask yourself how much you can afford. Think about both monthly payments and a down payment.

What Is the Car’s History?

When you start looking at specific vehicles, one of your first questions should be what the auto’s history is. Ask the dealer and get every piece of information that you can. Ask if there are service records available, both for the previous owner and any work the dealership has done on the auto. Ask about past accidents, the ownership history, and for a copy of the vehicle history report.

What Condition Is the Vehicle In?

Next, ask yourself about the vehicle’s current condition. This includes checking for signs of smoking or pets from the past owners or damage like pitting, rock chips, or rust perforation, all of which are unfortunately common in areas with tough weather. Check that all of the features work properly, especially the rear defrosters, heating, and anything else you plan on using. Ask yourself how many miles the vehicle has and if it has a fair price for that figure. Do not forget to check for brake wear and the current tire tread as well.

What Should I Know About Actually Buying It?

Ask yourself, or the dealership, what you need to know about buying the auto in question. First, ask the dealer how long of a test-drive you can take it on. Ask whether you can have your own mechanic inspect the vehicle. Do not forget to ask about any fees associated with the purchase, such as dealership and registration fees. Ask about both the total cost and the monthly payments. This is the time to confirm you can afford the auto, even with any associated fees.

Is the Car Right for Me?

Finally, ask yourself whether the used car in question is truly right for you. Will it fit in your parking spot or garage? Does it get gas mileage that makes you happy? Will it fit your family inside? Does it have the features you need? What about the ones you want?

Once you answer all of the above questions, you should have a very good idea of whether the car in consideration is right for you. At this point, you can take it on a test-drive and buy with confidence.

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