Do These 8 Things Before You Decide on a Used Car

used car lot with text do these 8 things before you decide on a used car

Buying a used car can be a risky business if you aren’t properly prepared. You need to do research to make sure you’re getting exactly what you need but you also need to ensure that the vehicle is in good working condition It’s a common misconception that all used cars are junk; if you follow these 8 steps, you can trust that you’ll find a vehicle that will last.

Do Your Research

Before you head out to the dealer or start shopping online, it’s a good idea to know how you’re planning to use your car. Ask yourself if it’s going to be the primary vehicle or just a weekend car. Are you going to restore it or does it need to be practically new?

Know What Questions to Ask

When you get to the dealer, be prepared with questions about the vehicle as well as any fees that may come with your purchase. The more you’re prepared, the less time you will waste in a no-win situation.

Create Your Budget

Knowing how much money you can spend – and where you can find financing – is one of the most important car-buying steps. Your budget will help you know how much you can spend, but it will also help you rule out dealerships if their fees are too high.

Test Drive the Vehicle

Always test drive a car or truck before you make a final decision. Test driving the car will give you an idea of visibility and legroom but you’ll also be able to check for strange noises or problematic smells that could be deal breakers.

Review the Vehicle History Report

CARFAX or AutoCheck are two companies who keep track of vehicle histories so that potential buyers can know exactly what they’re purchasing. Ask the dealer or the seller for the VIN to pull this report. If the seller won’t give you a VIN, that’s a red flag and you should just walk away.

Request a Pre-Purchase Inspection

Most dealerships should be able to provide proof that the vehicle has been recently inspected. If you still have questions or concerns, however, take the car to a mutually agreed-upon mechanic to look the vehicle over for any hidden problems. Make sure the mechanic checks underneath the car, too, as a few body shops won’t fix the damage that isn’t visible to the naked eye.

Complete the Transaction

You never have to decide on a vehicle right away. If you can negotiate the price, do, and remember that you can always walk away. Once you decide that the vehicle is right for you, you can complete the sale and everything that goes with it. Get the car title from the seller to make sure you are the rightful owner.

Purchase Car Insurance

Finally, make sure you purchase car insurance to protect your investment. After all that hard work, you deserve to have a car that will last for years to come!

Contact Performance Auto today to speak with our honest and qualified team. Let us take care of your car repair today!


  1. I want to purchase my first car soon. So, I liked that you pointed out that I should get a pre-purchase inspection. I would like to be able to ask the mechanic if the car I want to get would be hard to get repairs done on it. That way, I am prepared for the price of repairs beforehand.

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