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Quick Tips For Buying Pre-Owned Cars

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Quick Tips For Buying Pre-Owned Cars

Adriana Noton
July 14, 2011

No one wants to be stuck with a lemon, and the laws do not always protect the consumer when it comes to the purchase of a used vehicle. New vehicles lose their value as soon as they are driven off the car lot, making them undesirable to many. Looking for tips for buying pre-owned cars to save yourself the headache?

A pre-owned vehicle can be a worthwhile investment as long as you know some basic strategies to prevent the lemon fallout. There are two items you need to keep in mind as you begin your search. You want a vehicle in good condition and you want it for a reasonable price.

Let us begin with some ground rules. First, never look for a vehicle when you are desperate, you will be more willing to jump into the first thing that comes your way. Second, always be prepared to walk away, no matter how tempted you are.

Trying to get the best price means you cannot be afraid to negotiate, compare it to the Kelly Blue Book value or other vehicles of the same type. This can get hairy sometimes with individuals that are selling their vehicle as opposed to dealerships. Individuals that sell a car are usually attaching some personal debt to it such as memories, repairs or modifications they completed.

Once you have found a vehicle that meets the price range you are looking for, always ask for a Carfax on the vehicle, and verify the VIN number matches the automobile you are looking at. If you do not like what you see or they refuse to provide one, immediately walk away. Insist on taking the vehicle to a mechanic you trust, most mechanics will perform a pre purchase inspection for a minimal cost. This inspection includes certified pre-owned vehicles, this is a great asset for tips to buying pre-owned cars.

Test driving the vehicle you are interested in, does not mean a quick around the block and back. Make sure you run the engine through all the gears, test it in traffic with lights and on the highways. Keep in mind that it takes roughly 50 miles to trigger a check engine light if there are mechanical issues. Test all the gadgets the vehicle has not just the radio and windows. Take a look under the hood, even if you do not know exactly what you are looking at, the condition of the wiring and the appearance of the engine say a lot about how the vehicle was previously treated.

If you find anything wrong during the test drive you can ask to have it repaired or replaced prior to purchase or ask for the cost off the purchase price. This should only be done for minor things like a blown speaker. Any electrical issue or mechanical issue is an automatic walk away.

The purchase of a pre-owned vehicle does not have to be a nightmare. With a little patience and forethought, a person can get a great deal. Keep in mind these tips for buying pre-owned cars and you cannot go wrong.

Looking for used cars Edmonton? Then be sure to check out the massive selection of used cars and used trucks Edmonton over at Derrick Dodge.

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