1. Decide What You Need In A Car
I Will Use This Car For:
- Driving back-and-forth from work (80 miles roundtrip)
- Carpooling with two coworkers
- Weekend Vacations
2. Know What You Should Pay For This Car
the vehicle is free of any major defects. This vehicle has a clean Title History, the paint, body and interior have only minor (if any) blemishes, and there are no major mechanical problems. There should be little or no rust on this vehicle. The tires match and have substantial tread wear left. A "good" vehicle will need some reconditioning to be sold at retail. Most consumer owned vehicles fall into this category.
"Fair" condition means that the vehicle has some mechanical or cosmetic defects and needs servicing but is still in reasonable running condition. This vehicle has a clean Title History, the paint, body and/or interior need work performed by a professional. The tires may need to be replaced. There may be some repairable rust damage.
3. Learn About The Car's Seller
4. Ask The Seller The Right Questions About This Car
- What kind of commute do you have?
- How fast do you drive?
- What mileage have you typically had with the vehicle?
- Where is the farthest the car has traveled?
- Do you store the car inside, outside on the street?
- Who else drives the car?
5. Make A Detailed, In-Person Inspection Of The Car
6. Investigate The Vehicle's History
7. Get Everything In Writing Before Handing Over Money
- whether the vehicle is being sold "as is" or with a warranty
- what percentage of the repair costs a dealer will pay under the warranty
- The major mechanical and electrical systems on the car, including some of the major problems you should look out for