We’ve seen a lot of changes over the past few months and one that stands out is the increase in motorists opting for a used car rather than fork out on an expensive newer model.
With the Government continuing to discourage commuters using public transport as a result of the Coronavirus, car repair and service comparison site www.Autoadvisor.co.uk looked at how more people are purchasing – and investing in – a pre-owned vehicle. With the new 70-plate coming in at the end of this month a lot of nearly new and used cars will be on forecourts awaiting new owners.
There are lots of options available and it can be difficult to know where to start so Autoadvisor has come up with some tips.
Get your finances in order
To avoid being caught out by eager salespeople, make sure you know exactly what you can afford before you start looking. Be sure to do your research – if you have a specific vehicle in mind, carry out some market research so that you know you’re being offered a competitive price.
It’s also a good idea to look on the internet for an authorised dealership before heading out to ensure you’re dealing with a professional and will receive a high level of service.
Pay attention to detail
Always remember to thoroughly check any paperwork, especially if you decide to buy from an individual. Look at the address on the V5C logbook and check it matches the listed keeper, as well as looking at the logbook registration and chassis numbers.
Flick through the service history and look out for any suspicious notes regarding repair work as this could leave you with a considerable bill once the car is in your name.
It’s difficult to predict the Great British weather, and it may go without saying, but we recommend viewing a car in good daylight, taking your time to inspect every bit of the vehicle, inside and out. For example, turn on the air conditioning, check the window wipers are working, test out the radio and ensure the electric windows work faultlessly. It’s also worth turning on the lights and looking at the tyres closely. You can never be too careful – bring a checklist with you if you think it will be helpful.
Go for a spin
Always have a test drive before purchasing any vehicle as it’s important to ensure it handles correctly. Key things to look out for is if it starts without fail and to listen out for any unusual sounds which could point to faulty brakes or something wrong with the engine. Is there smoke coming from the exhaust? Does the car pull to one side when driving?
Give the car a once-over to make sure everything is there such as the spare wheel, the handbook or any sat-nav disks or SD cards. This will avoid a headache further down the line.
And always remember to ensure you’re insured before you get into the vehicle.
Sealing the deal
If you’ve carried out the above steps and have finally found your new pride and joy, make sure you secure your purchase by getting the agreed terms in writing. A receipt should be made including vehicle details, price, terms of sale and yours and the seller’s name and address. Some dealerships will also offer a warranty.
Once purchased, for added reassurance, you may need to take your vehicle to a local garage to check it over for any missed fault or repairs. Ask other people you know for advice or look up the members of independent trade bodies and read our Useful Links.