When it comes to choosing a vehicle to purchase, you have two options – buying a brand new car, or a previously owned or used vehicle. A commonly known downside to buying a brand new car is the fact that as you drive it out of the showroom, you lose value on the vehicle. It is a common rule of thumb that vehicles depreciate 15 – 20% per year, making this decision unfavourable for a lot of motorists.
Today, there is a wider range and selection of used motor vehicles as there ever was before. This allows for individuals looking to purchase their dream car, or just replace their current mode of transport, an opportunity to pick from a vast selection of models, colours and brands. Used vehicles are much more cost effective, but they do come with their downsides. You need to be extremely careful before purchasing, taking caution to properly assess the mechanics and work “under the hood” before making the final transaction. It would be best practice to take the vehicle to a mechanic for an overall assessment to ensure you have covered all bases before purchasing the vehicle.
Things to consider when purchasing a used vehicle
Buying a used car comes with its own set of challenges but based on research, there are a few tips and advice to help you make an informed and calculated decision.
- You can save a tremendous amount of money if you buy a used vehicle, with low mileage and that has been taken care of by the previous owner.
- Look for “Certified pre-owned vehicle” as this means it has undergone a thorough quality inspection and passed with certification.
- Vehicles are built to last longer than ever before, making used cars more effective and timely than ever before.
- With proper vehicle documentation, you can easily assess the history of the vehicle and check it on many reputable online reporting websites.
- Vehicles between 1 – 3 years are often still on motor plan, this will assist heavily in any maintenance or services that happen within that time period.
- Used vehicles are more likely to require replacement parts sooner than a brand new vehicle. An example would be a car I recently purchased and had a few parts that needed to be replaced. Luckily the Ssangyong Musso spares were easy to find and nowhere near the price I would have paid if I were to buy the Musso brand new.
Understand your budget and plan effectively
The next step, once you have decided on which vehicle to purchase, is to establish a payment plan. If you are financing the vehicle monthly, it is advisable to stick to the method of only spending 20 – 30% of your salary on monthly expenses. There are also many tools online that will assist you in figuring out the true market value of the vehicle you are purchasing, taking into account many financial aspects that are often hidden to laymen.
Best places to purchase your vehicle
You are fortunate enough to be living at a time where technology, convenience and competition collide and it has become easier and easier to find the perfect vehicle that matches your budget by browsing through thousands of options, at your fingertip. The internet has made it easier than ever to compare, ask questions and quickly get in contact with vehicle owners to set up a test drive. A quick google search will point you in the right direction and get you on your way to driving your dream car in no time!
Finally, read the fine print before signing off
A final word of advice, read the entire contact and re-read it to make sure you haven’t missed anything. It is recommended to take a lawyer with you to assist in the transfer of the asset. A tip would be to always avoid signing a contract that says “purchase as is”, as this means the seller isn’t held liable for anything after you take ownership. He could be hiding faults under the hood that could have been missed during inspection.
Check the vehicle history and be confident in the durability and drive quality. Ultimately, if you follow these steps, you will not only be more educated on the vehicle you are purchasing but you will be confident that you are driving away with a safe vehicle that matches your needs perfectly.