Buying a used car: what to remember

Posted on: 19/12/2013

We're realists here at Recycle Motors. We know that not everyone has the budget for a brand new car. Especially as we've all got Christmas presents to buy.

So, if you can't afford a brand new vehicle, don't worry! Buying a used car is a great way of cutting the cost of your driving: in fact, most new cars lose around 40% of their value in the first year.

Go grab a coffee, put your feet up, relax and let us show you how to buy a used car without getting a bum deal.

The first step is to set your budget. Before you figure out the type of car you can buy, you’ll need to work out how much you have to spend. Think about what you can afford on your current income, work out how much your current car is worth, and whether you will sell it privately or part-exchange it with a dealer. Then decide on whether you need to take out finance. Calculate how much your fuel, insurance and road tax costs are likely to be.

Then, you need to select the car that's right for you. With more choice than ever before, choosing your perfect car can be confusing. Make sure you spend some time thinking about what you'll use the car for and your current lifestyle. How many passengers will be regularly carried; and how much will it cost to fuel, tax, insure, service and repair?

Once your perfect car is in your sights, you need to be thorough in checking the paperwork. Ask to see the MOT certificate as this will give you all the information you need to see if a car was roadworthy when the test was passed. To check an MOT certificate is genuine, you can look at the car’s history online. To do the check, you’ll need the car’s registration number and the MOT test number, then visit the official Government service website. Also, check the service history as this will show what maintenance has been performed to the car. Ask to see the registration documents because otherwise, you could purchase a stolen car without realising it, and unearth the finance history to find out if the car has an outstanding credit agreement or logbook loan.

Phew, got that?

Ok, you'll also need to perform physical checks. Keep an eye out for any tell-tale signs such as rust, mismatched paint and uneven gaps between body panels. Make sure all the features work as well.

Taking the car for a test drive is your chance to assess every aspect of the car, from how it feels on the road, to making sure all its equipment works correctly, as mentioned above. Always take a test drive of at least 15 minutes and on different types of road. Arrange suitable insurance cover before you drive the car. Start the car when the engine is cold, and check for excessive smoke and unusual noises. Check the gears, brakes, steering and suspension work as they should, with no unusual noises and vibrations.

Once you're sure that everything is hunky-dory, it's time to buy your car! Remember to haggle, it's important to take your time rather than rush into any deal. Buy with your head, rather than your heart.

To help you get some extra cash to purchase your used car, why not scrap it with Recycle Motors.

Author: ADMIN
Categories: Blog, Tips

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