If you’re in the market for a car use these 10 tips for buying affordable used cars. The overall price of a new car can be overwhelming, especially when it comes to the payments that are needed to keep the car until you actually own it. It is because of this that most drivers decide to get a used car. There are over 40 million used cars that are exchanged every year, so how do you find the right one for you at the right price?
10 tips for buying affordable used cars
There are a lot of choices, many different paths to take for the whole process. For some, the paths can hit a dead end or even a wrong turn. However, at In-Power Motors, we offer you personalized help and assistance for free. It doesn’t matter how far into the process you are, we have free advisers that can help you.
Step 1. The Cost
To get the right price, if you plan to take out a loan, the payment will need to be no more than 20% of your paycheck after any deductions. Even less, if you happen to have a small budget. When it comes to a used car, whether it is purchased from a dealership or somewhere else, you will have to provide it with some TLC sooner than later, like maintenance or tires. Also, there are some other factors that can get forgotten during the process, like insurance and gas. Lastly, you have considered all the costs. It is best that you have a bit of money put up for those emergency moments. Whether or not the car has a warranty, anything can happen.
Step 2. Make a list of used cars
We all want that super cool Viper that sits in front at the dealership, used or new. However, it won’t fit into a budget. The best way to go about selecting a used car is that you make a list of all the brands, models, makes and prices that will hit your budget. Revise the list and keep it as guideline to help you get the car that is right for you. The list doesn’t need to be 10 cars, you could only have 3 as long as it is in your budget.
Make an easy list of cars by using our used car inventory:
Step 3. Check The Prices
Checking all the available resources when you are shopping for a car is vital. There are various prices for the same car. Private party sales will often have the lowest prices, where a Certified Pre-Owned car that is at a dealership will be pretty expensive. It is best to research the prices to ensure that you are getting the best and safest deal.
Step 4. Locate Used Cars for your Area
If you are wanting an easy place to start a list of used cars, check out our used car inventory page. You can search based on details such as features, price, distance from you, and even the odometer reading. It is best to find something that is in your local area to help cut down on any travel time.
Step 5. Know all the history on the car
It is vital that you know the history of a care before you decide to purchase it. Unless, you are purchasing from a close friend or family member that can verify the history clearly, one of the first steps when thinking about purchasing a car is to check Vehicle History Reports. You can use the VIN number or even license plate numbers on sites such as Autocheck or CarFax to obtain a detailed accident history reports, title statuses, and odometer roll backs.
Step 6. Contact the Seller of the Vehicle
Whenever you believe that you have found the car you want, instead of just purchasing it, you will need to gather as much information on the car as possible. Even though it is tempting to check the car out right away, sometimes you can get access to information that is not listed online or on the ad for the car that may sway your opinion.
If you aren’t sure of what you need to be asking, we have a questionnaire that may help you to stay on track for the right information. The last question on the list is price, although negotiating is tempting right off, but it is best to see the condition of the car for yourself before making an offer. Try to schedule a time to test drive the car, so that you can feel the condition for yourself.
Step 7. Test Drive the Car
Test driving is a vital step to purchasing a car, both old and new, because it will let you get a feel for the compatibility of the car to you. If it is a used car, you can focus on the condition while driving to see if there are major issues that was not mentioned in previous conversations or research. Here are some things you should take notice of:
- Is it comfortable to get out and in of?
- It is roomy and comfortable for you, backseat included?
- Can you drive it comfortably? Is it too low or too high? Can you adjust the steering wheel to fit you?
- Can you adjust the seats to a safe and comfortable position?
- Can you see safely and spot blind spots easily?
- Is a check engine light on? Is an issue that can easily addressed if so?
- Does it smell like gas or oil or is anything off about the car?
- Does it have old tires? How is the tread on the tires?
- How are the brakes? Do they squeal or need force to work?
- Check under the hood. Do you see any leaking, steaming or is something covered in oil? Ask questions right away if you do.
- Do all the features work right? Test them out.
After your test drive, ask the dealer or owner for the service records to ensure that the car has been maintenance and has had regular scheduled maintenance.
Step 8. Have the car professionally inspected
If you aren’t getting a Certified Pre-owned car, which has been inspected and is under a warranty, you want to make sure that you request to take the car to a mechanic to have it professionally inspected. The inspected for pre-purchase can cost about $100, and you are going to be the one paying for it, but it will be a smart investment. Doing this will let you know about problems that you missed and the ones that you were not informed of. A third party may resist this; however, a dealership will let you take the car to an outside mechanic.
Step 9. Being negotiating for a great deal
This is going to be a stressful step of the purchasing process. If you have a plan, and are able to be reasonable, then you can seal the deal easily. Here are some basic steps for negotiating:
- Know how much you will spend, but don’t start with that.
- Your initial offer needs to be lower than your maximum price, but within the price range of a similar car. Ensure that you are reasonable enough, but have room for altering.
- If the price that you and the dealer find yourself close to is around the price you want, and in the range of what similar cars are going for, then it is a good deal.
Chances are that that people who are on the other end don’t like negotiating either, so don’t be nervous.
Step 10. Doing the Paperwork
Purchasing from a dealership will require paperwork and contracts in the finance and insurance office. You will be offered optional features and warranties like prepaid service plans, fabric protection, and anti-theft. Some people like these options, and you want to think about if they will be right for you. If you are purchasing a Certified Pre-owned car, it will be under warranty. Ensure that you check out the paperwork and in most cases the cost is accompanied with fees for documentation, licenses, smog certificates and sales tax.
If you purchase a car from the owner, then ensure that before you hand them your money that you have the title or pink slip and registration and signed over. Be sure to check with your local DMV about any past due registration fees that may be your responsibility once you have purchased it. Also, it doesn’t matter where you purchase the car from, ensure that you have car insurance before you drive it.
Celebrate your purchase
Now that you have the keys, proof of ownership and insurance, it is time to celebrate. This calls for a drive around your area to show off your new car. We hope following these ideas will help you get a great deal on a used car, or you can always come and visit In Power Motors. We are dedicated to helping Phoenix residents get the quality used cars they need that they can afford. For more information about shopping for a used car with In Power Motors give us a call at 602-680-7877 or stop by our used car dealership.