If you’re in the market to buy a used car, then you know all about the idea of getting a clunker. If you want to make sure that you get a great quality car while saving yourself some hard-earned money, you’re going to want to arm yourself with the right tips on how to get the best deal on that used car. Here’s what you should know.
How to get the best deal on a used car
Carefully research the makes and models
The first thing that you can do to help yourself out is to look at what you want. Consider all makes and models to get a feel for what you like.
The thing is, it’s no good to get a car that you don’t want to drive because you don’t like it, right? Comfort in driving is a crucial detail. Consider test-driving a few similar options to see which feels best. Whether this is your first car or your tenth car, you will still want to test drive it to be sure it works for you.
Know your budget (and stick with it)
When you narrow in on the car you want, you’ll get an idea of the price, too. You’ll want to set a maximum and also a minimum that will meet your budgetary concerns. This will suit what you can afford and make sure that you know you aren’t being overcharged. For that tip – be sure to check out the Kelley Blue Book or NADA values for that vehicle to see about how much the dealership or private owner may charge.
Likewise, anything that comes in below budget (as in, significantly lower) will be a reason for concern because there must be a reason that someone isn’t charging that much! Nobody wants to buy a lemon, which ultimately will cost your more, later, or maybe sooner than later.
Along this line of thought, you’ll also want to understand what kind of negotiation you have available to you. Any reputable seller will be open to a bit of negotiation on the price, but make sure you don’t try to force them too low, or they force you too high.
Factor in insurance
When budgeting, you need to remember car insurance. Insurance premiums will be different from one type of car to another, and this means that you’ll need to talk to your agent about each specific make and model that you are considering since you’ll need to be able to budget for that, too. Keep in mind, that just because you have a cheaper car, may not mean you have cheaper insurance. Sometimes lemons may cost more because they may have bigger liabilities… to you or someone else. Take into account your safety on the road.
Always get an inspection
No matter how reputable the seller or how good the car runs, get it inspected when you take it for a test drive. Not only will you be aware of any kinds of potentially expensive repairs that need to be done, driving up the price of your car after bringing it home, you’ll also find out if everything is what it seems. As in, is the car stolen? Does something seem sketchy when your chosen mechanic takes a look under the hood? These can all be costly mistakes, so always take some time to get an inspection done. This is something that you may need to discuss with the seller and if you are buying from a used car dealership, they will likely have car fax reports so be sure you check those out.
Not sure where to start? Ask your agent
Whether it’s budget, makes and models, insurance costs because of your driving record, or even considerations on how to look at insuring a second-hand car, your local insurance agent will be a great resource to help you get a good feel for what’s a good deal and what may be a scam, or a lemon car. May as well use all of the help that you can get!
Buying a car is a very exciting milestone in your life, but you’ll want to put these tips to use to make sure it stays a positive experience! Better safe than sorry, after all, when it comes to your hard-earned paycheck.
Contact Paula Smith Insurance at (281) 488-8880 with any questions you have about car insurance for your new used car or any personal insurance needs for that matter. We are here to help you protect your assets no matter what!