Jeff And Matt´s Guide To Buying A Used Vehicle
It’s a nerve wracking time when you come to buy a used car, if you don’t have any car knowledge yourself. There are so many things that could go wrong – will it break a few weeks later? Will I find out the vehicle was stolen? Is there any outstanding finance on the car?
In an effort to find out what everybody should be checking out before they buy a used vehicle I got our used car salesman’s top tips! So here is Matt and Jeff’s guide to what you should be asking when you are considering buying a used vehicle - and the many, many reasons why it is best to buy a used vehicle from a reputable dealer.
- Firstly you need to work out what you can afford and stick to it!
As well as the type of car you can afford make sure you have considered the running costs – cars with bigger engines will cost more money to run, tax bands – how much will road tax cost you? Which insurance group will your potential new car fall into? The lower the number the cheaper the insurance!
2. Buy from a dealer.
There are so many reasons why it is better to buy from a dealer. Firstly you will have some legal protection under the Sale of Goods Act meaning your new purchase will need to be as described, of satisfactory quality and fit for purpose. Under these rules selling a car that is not fit to be on the road is a criminal offence. Additionally most dealers will offer you some form of warranty. Here at Rivervale Used Approved Vehicles all vehicles sold will come with a 6 month warranty so in the unlikely event there are any problems you can give us a call and we will sort it out.
3. Make the most of viewing any potential new vehicle.
Make sure you check the bodywork for any scratches or dents, are there uneven between panels? This could indicate poorly repaired damage. Check the level and colour of the oil, it should be light yellowy brown in petrol cars and a darker colour for diesel cars. Are there any leaks inside or underneath the vehicle? Test all the electrics as electrics are now the biggest fault on used cars, remember the lights even if the sun is shining! Go on a test drive and listen out for any strange noises and check the steering doesn’t pull to one side. If it is all too much to remember the AA have a handy checklist you can print out and take with you!
4. Check online
You can check so much online now that will help protect you from a bad buy. From the DVLA website you can check the year of manufacture, date the vehicle was registered, the engine size and the tax rate to make sure all the details match up. If you have the registration number and either the MOT test number or reference number from the V5C registration certificate you can check past MOT’s and see if there have been any failures. HPI checks are available online – if you are buying from a dealer this will have been done and the dealer should be willing to show you this. From the HPI check you will see whether there is any outstanding finance on your potential new vehicle.
5. So you’ve decided it’s the vehicle for you!
When you pay it is always advisable to pay using a credit card as then you will have added protection from the Consumer Credit Act if your purchase breaks any laws. It is unlikely you will be able to pay this way from a private seller so this is another bonus to buying a used vehicle from a dealer. Make sure you understand what is included in the price – is there a warranty? Make sure you know what is covered and how long for. Make sure you are clear who your point of contact is if you have any concerns or problems after you have left with your new vehicle.
Head over to our website to browse Matt and Jeff’s collection of approved used vehicles!!
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The comments above do not necessarily reflect Rivervale's views unless clearly stated.