5 things you haven't considered when buying a used car

Posted on 2017-06-14

 

There are many reasons to buy a used car instead of a new one, especially when budgets are so tight these days.

The best benefit is that the purchase price is cheaper, and if they’re not that old, you can get it with the manufacturer’s motor warranty, and perhaps a service plan, still in place. But even if they are out of the manufacturer’s warranty, you can still get an affordable pre-owned warranty.

Sounds great, so what’s the catch?

When you’re looking to buy a used vehicle, it’s important to also consider the negative side, so that you make sure you get a car that is the perfect fit for you. Here are some really important factors that you might not have thought of:

1. Mismatched paint

Not everyone is honest, so it’s important to go into any financial deal with your eyes open, whether you’re buying through a dealership or private seller.

Just because a car has been in an accident, doesn’t mean that you should steer clear of it entirely –this depends on how bad the damage is and what kind of vehicle you’re looking for. But whatever damage a vehicle has had, the seller should be upfront about it.

Look out for is mismatched paint. This is usually a tell-tale sign that the vehicle has had some kind of repair work done to it, which could cause more problems than you’re willing to deal with. Also, any kind of damage that someone is intentionally trying to hide is sure to be more trouble than it’s worth.

2. A price that’s too good to be true

It is possible to find a good deal these days if you look hard enough, and know where to look. However, don’t let your desire for a good bargain get in the way of your instincts. If a vehicle is selling at a low price that you can barely believe, it’s probably too good to be true. In our economic climate, sellers are looking to make the most money they can, while buyers want to get away with paying as little as they can. A good bargain happens when both parties strike a deal in the middle, so if that’s not happening, something is probably fishy.

3. Too many owners

If a car has had several owners in a few short years, chances are that there is something wrong with it. Sure, many people trade their vehicles every few years, but if a car sees a regular driver change every year or two, it might be best to stay away.

4. No service records

Having a properly serviced car can save a fortune in the long-term. There are many things that can happen if your car isn’t serviced regularly. Here are a few of them:

  • Oil sludge build-up in the engine. This becomes a gel-like substance that clings to parts of your engine, which inhibits the normal flow of oil, placing stress on the engine.
  • Unnecessary wear and tear. While certain wear and tear is normal, when you don’t service your car, this can put a strain on a whole lot of components, which results in quicker deterioration.
  • Higher fuel consumption. Petrol is expensive and most of us can barely keep up with prices at the pumps. Cars that aren’t in great condition consume more petrol, so give your monthly budget a break and service your vehicle when it needs it.
  • Not seeing potential problems. If you, or a professional mechanic, never open up your car, you are not likely to know that there is an issue until it’s a big problem, which can be costly to repair.

5. Don’t go for the first car you see

This isn’t a red flag, but it’s a good rule to keep in mind. We’ve all been there – once you’ve decided you’re buying a car, the excitement is hard to contain. You’re looking in trade magazines and on websites several times a day, waiting for the perfect one to become available. It’s OK to fall in love with a car – that is part of the joy of getting new wheels! But don’t let that cloud your good judgement. Make sure to check it out properly; try do this as if you have no emotional attachment. We know that that is easier said than done, so if you don’t feel you can be objective, get a professional third-party to inspect the vehicle. You won’t regret it if it turns out to be a dud.

When you’ve found your dream car, whether it’s new or second-hand, get insurance that fits in your budget while still giving you the comprehensive cover you need. Give us a call on 0861 00 19 17.