Owning a brand new car is a dream shared by many people all over the world. However, not everyone gets to buy a brand new car. Some opt to go for used or second-hand cars as a way to save money or help the environment by keeping used cars out of landfills or junk yards. With millions of used vehicles exchanging hands each year, you can’t always expect to get the best deal if you do not do your research. If you live in Alabama, used cars Montgomery is the best place to buy a second-hand vehicle. When buying any car, you expect it to be reliable and in the best condition. A used car gives you this assurance, especially if you buy from a trusted source. However, it is always good to look for advice before visiting your dealer. This article provides essential information on how to buy the best Montgomery used cars.
- Affordability. Your budget is the leading factor when it comes to buying any used vehicle. If you want to take out a loan to pay for the car, ensure that the car payment does not exceed 20% of your take-home pay. If your budget is tight, consider spending less. Used vehicles often need more regular attention compared to brand new ones. There are also some other ownership costs that most people fail to account for, such as insurance. Visit different car dealers to ensure you choose the one that meets both your needs and budget. Remember that second-hand cars have a bargaining space, which depends on the age and condition of that vehicle.
- Make a list. Some car brands such as Honda Accord make for good used cars. However, they may cost more than other brands. If you want to save money, make a list of different car brands. A list of three or four different cars that meet your needs and fall within your budget should do the trick. If you want a vehicle that is less than five years old, go for a certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicle. Such vehicles come with extended warranties that are backed by both the dealership and the carmaker. A franchised dealership that deals with that same brand new will also sell a CPO car of the same brand.
- Spare Parts. Since every car needs maintenance, it is wise to buy a car model whose spare parts are available at your local garage or car dealer shops. Choose a model, which most mechanics can cope with the changing engine technologies. A car with readily available spare parts has a return on investment since it is durable enough.
- Compare Prices. Prices will differ depending on where you are buying your vehicle. You can find second-hand cars in used-cars sections of car dealerships, private used car lots, used-car retailers, and websites where private-party sellers list their vehicles. Private-party cars often offer the lowest prices compared to the other options. CPO cars cost the most. Visit all these places and determine where you can get the best deal.
- Vehicle History Report. Always get a car history report unless you are buying from a family member or a close friend who can vouch for the car’s history. If your potential car has a bad history, you must know. You can find these reports on sites such as AutoCheck. Vehicle history reports allow you to know things such as whether the odometer has been rolled back or whether the car has a salvage title. You can either use the vehicle identification number (VIN) or the license plate number to access this information. Some car dealers can also provide this report if they have the car in their inventory.
- Contact the Seller. Once a car has attracted your attention, please do not rush to see it. Contact the seller first. Create a good relationship with the seller and verify all the information about your prospective vehicle. Ask whether the car has any mechanical problems. Contacting the seller first will also allow you to know whether the car is still in stock. Make sure you do not negotiate during this phase. Tie your offer once you have seen the car.
- Test-Drive. Always test-drive the vehicle. Test-driving will allow you to know whether the car is right for you. You can also tell if the car has any problem. You can also ask for the service records and have a mechanic inspect the vehicle for you.
- Negotiate. If you like the car, you can now negotiate the price. After landing on the right price for you, you can now sign the contract. Some dealers may offer you extra items such as anti-theft devices. Once you are done, you can now celebrate your purchase.
Always take your time when buying a second-hand car.