Buying a vehicle represents a significant financial commitment—even if you’re ultimately saving a lot of money by buying the car used. It’s only natural to want to safeguard your investment, and one of the best ways to do that is to simply engage in some due diligence before making your vehicle purchase.
Research the Car
You can start the process from the comfort of your own home, simply by going online to read some auto reviews. Check out not only professional reviews but consumer testimonials for the vehicle you want to purchase, making sure you know what kind of reputation it has. We’d also recommend checking sites like NADA and KBB, which can provide you with a rough estimate of how much the car is worth—a good way to make sure you’re not being overcharged.
Research the Dealership
It’s also smart to read up on the dealership you plan to buy from. What kind of reputation does the dealership have? Is it known for treating its buyers with honesty and integrity? User reviews on sites like Google and Facebook can be illuminating. Also, you can reach out to Get My Auto directly, and we can hook you up with a reputable dealership in the Orange County area.
Get a Vehicle History
Another smart move is to get a full vehicle history, using the vehicle identification number (VIN) of the car you’ve got your eye on. This report will provide you with a summary of any accidents or major repairs the car has had in the past. The easiest way to get this information is to simply ask the dealership for it. Be skeptical of any dealership that’s reluctant to provide this report.
You should never purchase a used car without first taking it for a test drive. Note that you don’t need to be an automotive expert to tell if something is a little off about the car you’re driving. Does it shake or vibrate? Do you hear screeching or moaning sounds from the brakes? Does anything about the vehicle make you uncomfortable? If so, that’s reason enough to walk away.
Ask About Warranties
Not every used car is going to come with a robust warranty, and many won’t come with warranties at all—but it’s always worth asking about. Make sure you spend some time going over the fine print of any warranty you’re offered, ensuring you know exactly what’s covered and what’s not.
The bottom line for buyers is that you can make a smart decision in your next used car purchase and protect yourself against bad deals. These tips show you where to start. For more, give us a call here at Get My Auto.