5 questions to ask when purchasing a used car

used car

Purchasing a used car can be stressful. How do you make sure you’re not purchasing a lemon?

The reality is many used cars are in fantastic condition and have many years of life left in them, you can snag a real bargain compared to the price of a new car!

To make sure a used car is in good as new condition, make sure you ask the following questions and are satisfied with the answers.

5 questions to ask when purchasing a used car 

1.     Why are you selling the car?

Although the seller could answer this question in several ways, they may give you some insight into how you’ll feel about the car in the future. For example maybe they are selling, as they need a bigger car to suit their family; will this car suit you if your family size increases? It is good to know the reason behind the change as you may run into the same issues down the track.

2.     Does it have any issues or damage that isn’t show in the photographs?

Purchasing a car is time consuming, especially when it comes to purchasing used cars and more due diligence is required. Often you have to travel to go and see cars so it is important that your time isn’t wasted. If a seller is honest about any dings, scratches or interior marks before you take time out to view the car you are more likely to follow through with the purchase rather than being disappointed and finding this out on arrival. You can also do more research to negotiate a price you are comfortable with.

3.     Does it have full service history and has it missed any scheduled services?

As long as a car has been routinely serviced in line with the manufacturers service schedule it should be well maintained and in good mechanical order. It doesn’t have to have been serviced at the dealer, but should have been serviced by a qualified log book mechanic and have all receipts and documentation to support the services.

4.     Has it ever been in accidents or had hail damage?

Accidents and hail damage can significantly increase and affect your insurance premiums as well as your resale value. If the car has been in any accidents or has hail damage, it does not mean that you don’t still want to purchase it, but it should be priced accordingly. Honesty is always the best policy.

5.     Do you have a car history report?

Government PPSR car history reports are not mandatory when selling a used vehicle and can be purchased by the seller or the buyer, all you need is the rego and VIN number. If a seller has already purchased one this will instil confidence, as you will know if it has any history of any accidents or outstanding finance. It is advisable to always get a car history report and not take the sellers word for it. If they are being truthful you will feel more confident in the purchase, if they have omitted information you may want to rethink.

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