You want to get another car or replace the car that you already have. You’re looking to buy a used car. But you’re not sure what to check or even where to look for a used car. 

Luckily, this article has laid out some helpful tips to help you when buying a used car. These tips will make the process painless. 

Think about your budget

When crunching the numbers, you need to think about all the running costs of the car you want to buy. You’ll need to think about the cost of the monthly payments. 

You’ll need to think about the tax, the cost of fuel, maintenance costs and the insurance. There are taxes on used cars that depend on their CO2 emissions. The amount can vary every year from £0 to £1000. 

You’ll need to check and compare the miles per gallon (MPG) to what the current owners of the cars are saying. This will help you estimate how much the fuel will cost you in the future. 

You’ll have to check if the car will need a lot of maintenance. Keep in mind that cars older than three years will need an annual MOT. 

You’ll also need to take your car for a service every year. This will make sure that the manufacturer’s valid stays valid. 

Another important factor that you’ll need to think about is the insurance cost for your car. You’ll need to look at what insurance companies can offer you for the car that you have your eye on. 

Think about what kind of car you need

Don’t go and buy the first fancy red used car that catches your eye. This is very important. You’ll need to think about what you need the car for. 

Do you need a new car for your family? If that’s the case, then a swanky sports car won’t be the best choice for you. 

You should go through a mental checklist to see if the car meets your practical and driving needs. Also, check if the car is reliable and how safe the car is for the environment. 

Find a respected used car dealership 

Deciding where to buy a used car is an important decision. Choosing the right dealership can save you a lot of hassle in the future. 

Going through the dealership might not be the most affordable way to find a used car. But there are plenty of advantages to using a respected dealership. 

The dealership will have inspected the cars they are selling. This would have included an HPI check to make sure that the cars are roadworthy. They will also be able to go through the paperwork for your peace of mind. 

To make sure that the information the dealership is giving you is factual, do your own research on the car using online service checkers like CarCheckUK to make sure that no important details are left out of the paperwork.

If you go through a dealership, you might have the chance to finance your car affordably. Buying a used car from a private owner means that you might have to take out an expensive loan. 

Inspect the car

When you’ve found a car or cars that you’re considering, it’s time to take an even closer look at them. Taking a closer look at the car will help you spot any red flags before you make your final decision. 

There are some key signs that you should be on the lookout for when inspecting the car. You should check the electrics, the bodywork, the interior, and the mileage. 

It’s important to remember that on average, cars will have driven 10 000 to 12 000 miles each year. If you see a higher mileage on the odometer, you should ask why it’s higher and see the latest service records. 

For the bodywork and the interior, you’ll need to ensure no dents or scratches or rust. You’ll also need to make sure that there aren’t any stains, scuffs, or rips on the interior. 

You’ll need to test the indicators, the headlights, and the brakes. It’s also recommended that you test the radio and windows to make sure they work. 

Take it for a test drive 

Going for a test drive is a very important step. This will help you decide if you feel comfortable driving it and see if there are any red flags. 

You should test the car on different types of road. This will help you check if there are any problems with the brakes and clutch, along with the steering. 

There shouldn’t be any kind of wandering or vibrating with the steering. You should make sure that there are no burning smells or loud squeaking noises. There shouldn’t be any fluid leaks.

Double-check the paperwork 

You’ll want to make sure that the price is correct and there is a date before you sign it for the sales contract. You’ll also want to make sure that you understand the sales agreement.

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