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Thinking About a Used Car? Here's How to Prevent Buying a Lemon

Buying used cars can be a really great thing for someone looking for exceptional value; the low price for a used vehicle is great, and the used car offers nearly the same benefits as the newer model. Most often, used cars offer this kind of value, although there are some vehicles being sold that just aren’t worth the money spent. Read this article to find out how to buy used cars without accidentally buying a lemon.

Identify The Desired Outcome: Think Long-Term

According to the used car sales experts at My Car Compass, sometimes people make far too rapid of a decision when they decide to buy a vehicle, and they may forget to consider the reason they’re buying the vehicle to begin with. Contemplate someone who walks onto a car lot and has not taken the time to assess what they need from their used vehicle. What they need is a family vehicle, perhaps something with seating room for about six people. Without thought, that same person could wind up buying a sports car with no roof that’s perfect for jetting around on the weekend.

It’s easy to make this mistake when someone doesn’t take the time to think long-term about their new purchase. For example, if kids are on the way, then remember that kids have friends who may also need a place to sit in the vehicle. Unless a person is okay with the idea of reselling their vehicle within a few months, it’s worth the time and the money to think ahead before making the purchase.

What Are The Best Used Cars On The Market?

There are some cars that are more reliable than others in terms of resale value, fuel economy, safety, and durability. Generally, the most reliable used cars have been constructed by Japanese auto manufacturers. This is not a rule, but it just so happens that the most reliable cars are made by Japanese car companies, like Honda and Mazda. The following vehicles are named some of the top most reliable used cars: Acura TL, Honda CR-V, Mazda MX-5 Miata, Toyota Highlander, and Toyota Yaris.

No matter which vehicle seems appealing, a buyer should always ask to take the car for a test drive. It’s important to get a good feel for the car’s agility and how it compares to a newer vehicle. A used car can sometimes be better to drive than a newer version because the used vehicle has had some time to be “worn in” and its parts are usually well-lubricated. This is not always the case though, so it’s a good idea to drive it, listen for any quirks, and ask lots of questions.

Be Aware of Recalls and Specific Model Defects

There are vehicle recalls all the time, but someone who is not keeping up with car news may not have any idea about the recalls. Look into the vehicle make, model, and year, and check to see if there have been any recalls over the years that it’s been around. Is it a reliable vehicle? Check consumer ratings, and do some research online before going down to the car lot to make the decision. Doing all of these things before stepping onto the lot will make for a smoother and more enjoyable used car buying experience.

Ask For the Background Details

No car is perfect, although a buyer may think that the car they’re looking at has no faults and the seller may help to enforce that idea. The truth is that most vehicles will have at least one minor quirk, and some will have some pretty major underlying faults. Ask the dealer for all the background information on the vehicle. Ask for the printed records that explain how often the previous owner brought the car in for an oil change, when the last time the tires were replaced, and if there have been any repairs done on the car.

It’s really important for the buyer to find out if the car has been through any accidents. Car accidents can really affect the resale value of a vehicle, and they can make the car less safe to drive. If the price of the car is way too good to be true, it’s possible that the car has a history that should be more thoroughly investigated before a purchase is made.

Bring a Friend Along for the Drive

Not everyone has vehicle knowledge, so take along a friend or family member who knows a little something about buying used cars. Bringing along a friend is a great way to stay objective, stay on budget, and stay true to the reason for being at the car lot to begin with. During the test-drive, a second pair of ears can really come in handy for listening to how well the vehicle is running, while the buyer is concentrating on the driving part. Make sure to bring a friend who is trustworthy and who will help the car-finding mission be a success.

In the end, the vehicle purchased will be the one that will be driven for some time to come. Put some thought into what type of vehicle is needed, and investigate the different options for reliable used cars. Be sure to check into recalls and common problems people notice in the make and model of the vehicle, and ask the dealer as many questions as need be. Also, always ask for the car’s detailed history. Buying used cars can be a great experience when it’s done right!

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