We want to make sure you have everything you need for a smooth buying experience. A little research will help you protect yourself in the end and negotiate a better deal today. Here is our checklist for buying a used vehicle with confidence.
The Prep Work
When you find a vehicle that you might be interested in do some homework on it. Was that make or model ever recalled for any faulty parts or mechanical problems? Next, take the vehicles information and plug it into a website such as http://www.kbb.com/. This will allow you to compare their asking price with an industry average based on the trim options, mileage, extra features, and other online listings. Start a list of questions or concerns you might have for the seller of the vehicle.
Whoever is selling the car should be asked a few basic questions to see their actual role in the sale of the vehicle. An unlicensed dealer will normally claim to be helping a relative or friend by selling the car for them. The good thing is that you do not have to take their word for it. You can Google their name and phone number to see if they have listed other vehicles for sale online. If their name is not on the title of the vehicle or they have many online listings, this should be a major red flag.
Here is where you might get your hands dirty. Take a flashlight, paper towels, and something to write on when you go to inspect the car. Check all of the fluids, look over everything under the hood, and write down any noticeable problems. All of these things can be used in final price negotiation.
PLEASE take any used vehicle you consider purchasing to a trusted mechanic. A family friend could do it free or a standard mechanic could charge up to $100 for the inspection. Have them take some serious time to look over every little detail, write everything down that they find.
After a thorough inspection drive around for a few miles at a variety of speeds to see how the vehicle performs. If the seller does not want the vehicle to be inspected by a mechanic then they are trying to hide something from you.
The Report Card
A vehicle history report from www.carfax.com for example, is well worth the investment of $39. It will show you any major accidents, odometer readings, and title information. A perfect auto repair can hide an accident, but a history report will show it front and center.
Use the things that you and your mechanic find to negotiate a fair price and take home a used vehicle with confidence. For worry-free used car shopping, come see us at Brent Brown Toyota in Orem! Be sure to LIKE US on Facebook and FOLLOW US on Twitter to catch our posts hot off the press