Essential Tips for buying a used car

Buying a used car can be tough if you don’t know what you’re doing so you need to be well equipped before you actual make a purchase. Of course aesthetics wll always play a part in choosing a car but they really shouldn't be your primary concern or focus. It's all to easy to get ripped off when buying a second hand car and always a god idea to stick to established dealers rather than ads. When you're choosing a new car you want something with  With that in mind we’ve put together the ten best essential tips to ensuring that you get a good deal.

10. Haggle

You’d be amazed how often people overlook this step and it is absolutely essential. Dealers and individual sellers will always have a lowest price in mind so you’ve got to get as close to it as possible. Take the initial price knock off 5% at least and then hit them with that offer, usually they will counter offer so you go somewhere in the middle.

9. Check for vehicle tampering

Not as common as it once was but there are a variety of shady practices in the second hand car world and you need to be on your guard. Firstly ensure no clocking has taken place by looking at the service history and number of KM on the clock if there are long period with very little distance travelled then you should be suspicious. Aside from this look for solder marks and other tell-tale signs of tampering.

8. Check the service history

Always look over the service history of any vehicle. Make sure it has a complete service history and that the distances and numbers add up. Check that its recent history is up to date so that you won’t get any nasty surprises.

7. Check the paperwork

Similar to the above checking the paperwork is essential. Check the vehicle history as well as the service history and check that the serial numbers on the paperwork match those that are on the car. This is essential to avoid finding the car you bought isn’t really the car you thought it was.

6. Take it out for a drive

One of the quickest ways to check the condition of a car is to take it for a test drive. Make sure it’s at least for an hour and check how the engine sounds, the brakes and all the other functions work. If you find anything wrong get it fixed immediately. If it sounds odd or stutters at all there is likely something wrong with them.

5. Look it over

Just as important as the test drive itself, checking the car over is essential. Check the tyres, the internal conditions and check for rust and signs of damage. If you find anything check it against the service history and if it doesn’t match start asking difficult questions.

4. Check the seller

Checking out the seller is always a good idea especially if they are a small mechanic or fix cars up not as their main career then it is worth checking their track records. With small dealers search online and with individuals check for any criminal records etc. This can all be done easily using the internet.

3. Check the book price

Incredibly important is to check the common prices of the car model you are looking at. Look online or in an auto trader magazine and see what the common costs are. Take into account the relative mileage of the cars you see. If the car you are looking at has a high mileage the price should be lower and vice versa. When you check this out you should be able to determine whether the car is worth the money or what you should haggle the price down to, to make it worthwhile.

2. Research the model

This is important when buying any car but with used cars it takes on an extra dimension. Usually you want to check any manufacturing problems, or potential faults but with used cars you also want to check common problems that arise after x number of miles. Search online for the key problems that arise with the model at certain ages and ensure that yours isn’t at, past or close to the problem mileages.

1. Research the car itself

This is so often overlooked it’s untrue but when you’re looking at a car you need to check the registration out to ensure that the car is not reported missing stolen or having been written off. Check the registration against the serial numbers – usually on the inside of the car doors and check that everything matches. If the car checks out your most likely good to go.