5 Tips for Buying a Used Car

Many people prefer buying used cars over new cars. The price tag makes buying used cars much more viable. Buying a used car can also be scary – you don’t always know exactly what you’re getting into. We’ve heard the horror stories of undependable used cars. Following these 5 tips will make your experience purchasing a used car much more pleasant.

tips for buying a used car1. Decide What You’re Looking For – Before anything else, what exactly are you looking for? Is it something cheap and affordable, or are you looking for more of a long-term vehicle? Do you want a small car, a truck, or possibly a van? Are there certain features you are looking for in a vehicle, such as 4-wheel drive? In addition to deciding what you want in a car, decide exactly how much you’re willing to spend. Whether you plan to pay in cash or take out a loan, it is important that you have a defined budget, as this will make your search a lot more manageable.


2. Do Your Homework – Once you know what to look for, it is time to do your homework. You never want to make a big purchase without having made an informed decision. Most used cars that are for sale will be listed online, whether that’s on the website of your local used car dealership or on a bigger site such as cars.com or autotrader.com. Shop around (a lot), compare prices, view the vehicle history reports, and come up with a list of 3-5 cars that you are seriously considering.


3. Go Check Them Out – Call the seller and confirm the availability of the car. When you’re on the phone, ask a lot of questions – you may learn things about the car that you didn’t know before. Arrange a time for you to meet and see the car.  Take it for a test drive. While in the car, you’ll need to use 4 of your 5 senses (not taste – you don’t need to lick anything). How does everything look, both the interior and beneath the hood? As you are driving, how does the car sound and feel? Are there any unusual smells? If everything still looks good, arrange to have it checked by a professional mechanic. Bargain Tire can help give you an expert opinion.


4. Make Your Decision – After you’ve driven a few different cars, and you still have a list of 3-5 vehicles that you are seriously considering, it’s time to make a decision. Weigh the pros and cons of each vehicle, talk to a trusted friend or family member, and make your choice.


how to buy a used car5. Negotiate -Some people hate negotiating, but when you’ve done all this work to research the car, chances are you’ll be able to get the car for less than it is listed. Your initial offer should be less than the amount you’re willing to spend. Be reasonable and realistic. When both sides are happy, close the deal, do the paperwork, and enjoy your new vehicle.


Many people have positive experiences buying used cars. To make sure you are one of them, be sure to follow these 5 tips for buying a used car. For any vehicle maintenance or repair needs here in the Pocatello, ID area, come see us at Bargain Tire! Good luck shopping!