Top Tips for Buying a Used Car

As most new cars lose as much as 40% of their value in their first year on the road, buying a used car is a great way to cut the cost of your driving. There are of course risks involved whenever you purchase something with its own history. Here are some pointers to think about when buying a used car, and pitfalls to avoid.

Do Your Homework

Start off by checking the price guides and comparing similar cars so you know everything you can about the value of different cars. Websites like Exchange and Mart will help you find out what’s on the market. This will also enable you to budget carefully, as you can get insurance quotes by checking a comparison website and also check car tax rates before you agree to anything. You should also factor in the cost of any work you may need to do to the vehicle. Ask about the car’s service history too, and if there’s no history then find out why. If you know the vehicle’s registration number and details then you can also check its MOT history online. Ultimately as the buyer you have to be wary of anything that seems too good to be true.


As well as asking the right questions you should look out for some notorious problems. One example is clocking, the illegal practice of winding back the odometer on a high-mileage car to increase the asking price. Car cloning is another, in which one car is given the identity of another by replacing its number plates. A Car Data Check is worth investing in to find out more about the vehicle’s history.

Making a Purchase

It’s important that you find the right vehicle for you. Don’t feel pressured into buying, and don’t let a seller sway you with any sob story about how they need the money. Before you hand over any money you should agree arrangements for collection or delivery, you should confirm what exactly is included in the price as well as any work that the seller has agreed to carry out on the car. Finally you must be sure to get a receipt containing the vehicle’s details, price, terms of sale, as well as the details of the seller. That way you can be sure that you will be covered as much as possible and limit your risk when setting off on your new used car.

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