What You Should be Asking When Buying a Pre-Owned Car

June 4, 2021

When you are buying a pre-owned car, there are some important questions that you must ask. You can generally find pre-owned cars and ones with low mileage for less than the new car equivalent according to Motus.

buy a pre-owned car

However, before you sign on the dotted line, you need to ask a few questions.

So, what questions should you be asking?

Who is the Seller?

An important consideration is who you are buying a pre-owned car from. If you buy from a private seller or a dealership, the deal will often be as is, which means the vehicle won’t have any future guarantees.

As a buyer, you will need to research and look into the seller before you continue. You should check social media, their website, online forums and online reviews. This will give you a better picture of who you are dealing with.

What Are You Buying?

You will first need to have an idea or know what make and model you want to buy and have a clear budget in mind of how much you are willing to spend on a pre-owned vehicle.

Another consideration is the age and mileage of the vehicle. According to Motus, a good average is between 20 000km and 25 000km per year.

Does the Vehicle Still Have a Warranty

New vehicles will come with service and warranty plans. If you can find a pre-owned car that still has these valuable elements attached then it is a plus.

However, if your dream car is out of warranty or service plan then it is best to have the vehicle inspected by an independent expert, so that you have a good scope on the condition of the car.

You can purchase motor warranties at an extra monthly cost, which could be a good idea as these will protect you financially if anything were to go wrong in the future.

Is There a Full-Service History?

When buying a pre-owned vehicle, you need to check that there is a full-service history. This will show if the vehicle has been well maintained and will have an impact on the warranty of the vehicle.

It will also give you valuable insight into the condition of the car and may reveal any future problems that the car may have.

Has It Been in an Accident?

As a buyer, you will need to find out if the car has been in an accident. Look at the exterior of the vehicle and see if you can spot any issues like uneven body panel alignments and gaps.  

It is also a good idea to find out if any components within the vehicle have been replaced as this could save you money in the future. Also, you may discover that some of the components may need to be replaced soon, which could mean that you will pay for something on the vehicle a lot sooner than you think.  

Can You Test Drive?

Before you purchase any pre-owned vehicle whether it is from a private seller or a dealership, insist on taking it for a test drive so that you can listen for any strange noises.

On a test drive, be thorough and test everything to ensure that it works as it should and you will be able to detect any issues. A test drive will also give you a feel for the car and the way it handles.  

It can be exciting to buy a car, but never take anything at face value. You must do your research and inspect every aspect of the vehicle before you drive away in your new pre-owned car.

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