Purchasing a Used Car 101

Why am I, a fashionista writing about cars? Good question, well since my website is about fashion as well as lifestyle, my goal is to be informative. This falls into the lifestyle aspect and I fear a lot of people overlook many details when purchasing a car. No, I am by far not an expert but with the help of some friends I have gained a grasp on car knowledge. It has become a confidence booster and to be honest fun to take charge of my exploration on vehicles. You should feel empowered to make this large purchase and not put your trust in the seller.

The Deals

With summer barreling around the corner some of you may be headed out to find a new car. If you’ve saved up enough to buy a brand-new car good for you! Here is why I will probably never buy a new car from a dealership myself. Not only are off the lot cars expensive but they also depreciate as soon as you drive them off the lot. Instead I would rather invest the time looking for a slightly used new car.

What does this mean? Sometimes cars will come back to the dealership for whatever reason. For instance, an elderly person who bought a car and recently lost their license or simply someone who was not happy with the car. These types of situations mean the car has low mileage, is in practically new condition, but also has a nicer price tag. Offers like this are hard to find but definitely out there. Since these offers are rare let’s discuss what to look for when purchasing a used car either from a dealership or the internet with confidence.

After Expenses

It is nauseating to make a large purchase so break it down beforehand; start with how much you can afford. Don’t just stop there, instead look out for future expenses such as how much parts for that type of car cost, some can be crazy expensive. Eventually it will need work done on it so save yourself the headache now by being prepared. Look at the tires, are they slightly used or are they balding? See much tread is left on the tires otherwise you’ll need to add into your budget a new set. Test the brakes too!

Work Space

Are you a boss with ambition to save money by doing little jobs yourself such as oil changes? Do a work inspection, see if there is enough room to do the job with ease. Smaller cars such as a PT Cruiser are a headache as everything is so cramped together they make the easiest job a nightmare. Companies will upcharge if there is limited working space too so even if you opt to send it in to a licensed mechanic expect a higher bill on all front-end maintenance.

The Little Things

Bring out your inner child and press all the buttons! It seems silly but once you experience purchasing a car with a broken glove box or a button that does not work you’ll be glad you did. Is the glove box locked? Ask to see verification that it actually works, it may be locked because the hinges are broken. Roll down all the windows, turn on the AC, turn on the heater, play with the windshield wipers, turn on the radio, EVERTHING. When you are purchasing a car off the internet not everyone will be as transparent as you hope, so bring a friend to help uncover any secrets.

History

Be inquisitive, if this is the first owner the car will most likely have been babied which is good for you. Are they a car flipper? What work was recently done on the car, most likely this information will be shared as it adds value to the car.

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Richard Driving (:

Since many people often buy a car and simply wait for it to break, next Wednesday I will be discussing how to take care of your car to prevent roadside issues. I hope these tips helped you feel more confident as you prepare to go car shopping. Let me know what your first car was down below or your dream car.

XOXO Faith

 

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