Buying a used car is a great idea over buying a new one. It’s a good thing for both your wallet and the environment; plus, you could end up getting a car that you really want rather than just whatever you could afford if you were only considering buying new.

There are, however, a few downsides to buying a used car, and falling into those traps could end up costing you a fortune you don’t have.

It’s Time For New Wheels!

Buying a used car can save you money, especially if you buy from an affordable dealer and use one of the many good deals out there on used cars.

That said, the first step to safely buying a used car is knowing what to look out for before you sign on the dotted line.

Considering buying a used car? Follow these essential tips, and you’ll end up with a good deal and avoid the cool traps.

Decide What To Do With Your Car

Most used car dealerships will offer you a deal in exchange for your car if you decide to sell it to them, but this might not be the best deal you could get.

This is why you should only sell your car to a dealer if you know that they are giving you the right price. Otherwise, you might end up losing out on valuable money and should consider another dealer for selling your car.

In order to make the best deal, find out how to sell your car via other methods before you go to the dealers.

Test Drive It

Taking an old car for a test drive is one of the best ways to determine if it’s worth our money. Sometimes, when a car has been sitting for a long time, it might need a little push to get started, but once you get going, you’ll want to keep driving. Look out for vehicles that start-up easily and go smoothly (with no weird noises).

These are signs of good maintenance and that the owner took care of the vehicle. Consider the cost of regular maintenance before making your decision; it could save you trouble in the long run.

Check The History

If possible, check the vehicle’s history report before buying it. Check for any car recalls, and make sure that the vehicle is not overdue for maintenance, such as oil changes or tire rotation. If a car has been in an accident, it might be a good idea to get a different car; other times, the damage might simply be cosmetic and of no real concern.

A history report can also give you some clues to the vehicle’s overall condition and quality. The date of manufacture will give you an idea of when the car was built; cars made more recently tend to be in better shape than those made earlier, even if they are in good condition.

Look for Rust

There are several ways to spot a potential rust problem ahead of time.

This is particularly helpful if you don’t live nearby to the car’s manufacturer; look for signs of rust below the wheel wells and on the metal inner and outer portions of fenders.

The paint on the vehicle can be chipped, cracked, or faded, which also indicates that it’s been exposed to weather conditions (hot or cold) over time.

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