ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Autos»
  • Buying & Selling New & Used Cars

Choosing the Perfect Used Car

Updated on April 7, 2011

There comes a time in every life when the prospect or the need to buy a vehicle.  Many people will only buy new vehicles, others will only buy used vehicles, and some still buy whatever they think is the best deal.

When looking for a used car, there are several questions you need to ask your self.  The first is "What is this vehicle's purpose?" That may sound odd, but without defining the purpose of the car, the rest is not going to be easy.  Will it be a primary driver? Will it be used for a single passenger or a family?  Do you have a long commute to work?  Is this vehicle just for fun on the weekends?

Once you have established what you are using the car for, determine how much you can afford to spend.  Remember, if buying a used car, expect to pay for basic maintenance after it has been bought, such as oil change, air filter, belts, tires, brakes etc.  Make sure to allow money for that as well.  Sometimes car dealers will negotiate those into the cost, but do you really want to be paying interest on these for the next 3 to 5 years? Also, even if you have perfect credit and are trading in a clear title vehicle, expect to be asked for money down.  Due to the economy, a lot of banks are not lending to anybody without cash down.  Regardless of the amount financed.

Next is the purchase window.  When do you need the car?  Try not to ever buy a vehicle on the spur of a moment, many times you can overlook better deals, or better vehicles by being hasty.  Use the internet to browse car lots from home, get a list of cars you are interested in, then research those cars online as well.  See what average retail is, see if there is any known problems with the cars, find out all you can find out about them.  You may find that brand A has a history of the engine dying at "x" miles, and the car you found is 1000 miles over that spot. 

Once you have narrowed down your choices, go see the vehicles in person.  This is the biggest headache of the entire process, dealing with the car salesperson.  They will play their games, attempt to pressure you, attempt to make you feel bad "for all the work they did" for you.  Just remember, it's their job to do do this.  Until you are in the finance office and have signed the last paper, you can walk at anytime.  If they try to steer you to "the perfect car for you", be polite but firm.  Odds are the one they are trying to sell you has been on the lot for a while, and is either over priced or a piece of junk.  If there is not a price on the window of the vehicle, and the salesperson won't give you a price, but ask you to come in to discuss the "value" of the car, walk away.  

Once you have looked at all the cars on your list, and have driven a few, and decided on one, make sure and take it to your mechanic for them to inspect.  The dealers have to allow this(I believe its law in most states).  If they refuse, do not buy.  If there is anything about the car that concerns you, do not buy it!  Remember, somebody traded that vehicle in for a reason.  Sometimes the reason is something is going wrong with it.  One of the worst feelings in the world is buying a used car and one week later its in the shop for major repairs.

Buying a car can be a headache, but if approached with thought, planning, and some understanding it can become less of one.  Just remember no impulse buys, no pressure buys, and do not sign anything until you have researched it completely. 

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)