Buying a used car can be an intimidating experience whether you’ve done it before or you’re a first timer. On one hand, you want an affordable vehicle that fits your budget; on the other hand, you’ve probably heard some stories about poor treatment from shady dealers. Not only is it essential that you get the vehicle you want but also that you are satisfied that you were treated right throughout your purchase experience. Here are several tips for buying a used car that can help you achieve your goals.
Put Down a Large Down Payment
While some buy here pay here dealers try to get you in the door by offering “no money down” or “99¢ down,” you will be much better served throughout the life of your loan if you can make a larger down payment on the vehicle. A larger down payment on your vehicle will effectively reduce the amount of your monthly car payments. This also means that the payoff on your car loan will be less. If you decide to replace your car in the next few years, possibly to trade up, you will have more equity in the vehicle if you can put down more in the beginning.
Know What You Want
When you shop for a used car, it can be tempting to let your eyes get bigger than your wallet. Instead of heading straight for the latest sports car or third-row SUV, check out the more affordable models instead. However, your growing family may need a third-row SUV — it all depends on what you actually need and can afford. Take a close look at your monthly budget before you go car shopping so that you know what you can afford and what you can’t. It also helps to approach the process with an open mind about some vehicles that you may not have previously considered. A vehicle not initially on your radar may turn out to be your perfect fit.
Buy a Reliable Used Car That Will Perform and Last
You will be much better off long-term if you put certain factors at the top of your list such as low miles, reliability, safety, and low maintenance costs. Search online on sites such as Car and Driver to learn which makes and models hold up the best over time. At Integrity, we pride ourselves on having the best, safest, and nicest vehicles. Each and every vehicle goes through a 132-point check before its available for sale.
Purchase a Real Service Plan
Even the most reliable used car can run into problems that you’ll need to repair out-of-pocket if you don’t make prior arrangements. Some other buy here pay here car dealers will try to sell you a service plan that ultimately doesn’t cover much, if anything. If you want real peace of mind, make sure you get a real service plan with your used vehicle.
Integrity offers a Heartland Service Plan approved and licensed by the state of Oklahoma Insurance Department. The plan covers the repair and replacement, including parts and labor, of vital systems such as the engine, transmission, electrical and fuel system, and the cooling and A/C system.
Buying any vehicle is a big commitment, but you can remove stress from the equation if you are educated and prepared. Follow these simple tips and you will have a more positive experience and will be sure to drive away happy in a used car that will bring you many miles of enjoyment.