Used Car buying tips
A record number of used cars were purchased during 2016 and the trend shows no signs of letting up. While buying a used car can be a gamble, our tips can help you avoid a lemon.
Talk to owners of similar vehicles. Ask about maintenance, problems and mileage. Many online forums are dedicated to specific makes and models and can be a good resource for owner feedback.
Get familiar with current pricing. Check the used vehicle ads in the classified section of The Oban Times, used vehicle advertising specialty publications and online services.
Determine if you want to purchase a vehicle from a private owner or a dealer. While you might be able to negotiate a lower price from a private owner, the vehicle usually does not come with a guarantee that many dealers offer.
If you’re buying the vehicle from a dealer, read the contract carefully. If there are problems that need to be corrected, make sure the dealer takes care of them before you drive away. Read everything before you sign, ask questions if you do not understand something and keep a copy of the contract.
In a private sale, check that the seller is, in fact, the registered owner of the vehicle. Make sure you get the vehicle’s title and a bill of sale. Remember, most private party sales are ‘as is’.
Always take a road test. Make sure the test is more than just a drive around the block. Check how the vehicle handles at highway speeds and in stop-and-go traffic.
Have a mechanic check it out. You will likely have to pay a fee to have the vehicle inspected; however it’s worth the money to catch looming mechanical problems in advance.
Shop around. Don’t be so enamoured with a particular model that good judgment falls by the wayside. The first one you see may not be the best deal.