Buying a vehicle is never easy, but buying a used vehicle is downright difficult. You will get your hopes up numerous times by an ad that seems too good to be true, only to be let down when, in fact, it was too good to be true. Someone might advertise their car as “Like new! Mild wear and tear! Runs great!” when in actuality, it is very much old, has extensive wear and tear and doesn’t run at all. Yes, it happens. That is why, when shopping for used cars, you should know where to turn and how to negotiate. Don’t fall for a scam and bring home a lemon, and use the following advice to help ease the pain of your search:
Go to a Dealer
Sure, you know someone who found a great deal on Craigslist, or are even friends with that lucky person who bought a car on Ebay ten years ago and it’s still running great today. However, those people are the exceptions to the rule that states that you should never, ever shop for used cars online. Not only is it impossible to tell the true condition of a vehicle without actually seeing it, but also, you’re risking spending thousands of dollars a car that may take a dump on you ten minutes after purchasing it. Then, because there is no warranty, you’re stuck with an old car that doesn’t run and no money to fix it.
Find the Car You Want
Before you head to the dealership, know what you’re looking for. If you head to the dealership without a clue, you may end up purchasing a vehicle that is over your budget and all wrong for your needs. Identify the traits you need in a new used car: good gas mileage, three rows, ample storage space, etc. Once you do this, set a budget and head to the dealer.
Negotiate Like a Pro
Negotiating for a fair price might be the most daunting part of the car buying process, but it’s necessary. Dealerships expect you to negotiate and price their cars accordingly. Use all the knowledge you have regarding the vehicle to bring the price down.
Use the tips above when shopping for used cars to get the best your money can buy.
When your teenager reaches driving age and wants a car, you will probably have many decisions to make. Not only will you have to compromise with your teen when it comes to what you will pay for and what make and model is acceptable, you will also have to consider which used cars are the safest for him or her to drive. If you’re ready to buy your teen a car, we’re here to help with a few tips that might make the processes easier.
While your teenager probably has a make and model already in mind, you may want to make some boundaries clear before you start browsing used cars together. Not only will price be a factor, but it can be expensive to insure teen drivers as well. Their age and inexperience make them a considerable liability to many insurance companies, so choosing a no-frills vehicle may help you save money.
Do Your Homework
While we can help you choose a safe used car for your teen, it might also help if you perform some research on your own before you visit our lot. Take the time to discover which used cars have the best safety ratings, which ones have additional safety equipment that might keep your child safer and which are the least expensive to operate. The more you know before you begin to look at individual cars, the easier it might be to arrive at a decision.
Prepare Your Teen for Test Drives
Even if you will be doing much of the legwork and putting up the cash for your teen’s car, you may still want to prepare him or her for what will be involved with test driving vehicles. Teach them what to look and listen for and help them prepare a list of questions to ask our sales associate for during and after a test drive.
Buying your teenager his or her first used car doesn’t have to be a headache. Compromise, research and careful planning can all ensure a more enjoyable buying experience for you both.
It might be tempting to buy a used car from a private party, but it could cost you in the long run. First of all, you might have to drive all over town looking for the right vehicle, costing you time and money. Our dealership has hundreds of used cars for sale on our lots at all times, and we have seen very few customers who weren’t able to find a great car for their needs. Here are the three services that our dealership excels at.
As already mentioned, we always have a variety of quality cars to choose from. Some of them are only a year or two old and have barely lost the new car smell. Other used cars might be five or more years old, but they have all been looked over and passed by our quality mechanics. You will be driving off the lot in a car that has been well maintained. When it comes to styles and models we carry everything from economical compacts to roomy SUVs to performance sports cars.
We provide professional assistance on all financial matters when it comes to your new car. If you need a car loan, our finance department will go over your options with you, getting you the lowest interest rates possible and a monthly payment that fits into your budget. We will help you take care of license fees, registration and any other expenses.
Our professional full-service maintenance department for used cars can take care of everything from oil changes to engine rebuilds. This saves you the trouble of finding a reliable mechanic. Our maintenance department can even alert you to routine work that needs to be scheduled.
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that your car needs regular maintenance. A lot of people just go about their routine with their car and forget to take care of it. It takes time and money to get used car service, but it actually saves you time and money in the long run because a good mechanic will see problems before they become major issues and stop your car.
No one enjoys the inconvenience of a car breaking down. Although you can’t prevent every issue, you can pay attention to your car and know when it needs service. A regular oil change is a good opportunity for your mechanic to inspect the belts and tires on your car to see if they need to be replaced. Uneven tire wear is a symptom of a bigger problem. Catching it early means that you can get it fixed before other parts wear out and break down.
Build a relationship with a good car repair shop so that they, too, notice when something is different with your ride. Enjoy the confidence that your car is up-to-date with fluids and filters to get the most performance out of your vehicle. Ask your mechanic about weatherizing your car to be ready for changing seasons. The winter temperatures are hard on your battery. Warm summer temperatures stress your air conditioning system.
Find the used car service at a reputable dealer and know that your car is being well taken care of. Ask your mechanic what you should be doing to maintain your vehicle throughout its life. It not only makes sense for your peace of mind while you’re driving your car, it holds its value when you’re ready to trade it in. It’s easy to forget that your car needs service when it runs fine. Keep it running fine by taking time each month to check the fluids and tires. Maintain your car to peak performance with the help of a good car shop.
No matter how great your car is, it’s not going anywhere without quality tires. And with both new and used cars, tires are among the most expensive component to replace. For that reason, you’ll want to learn a few useful tips for learning how to get as many miles as possible out of your tires.
Keep Your Tires Properly Inflated
During the warmest and coldest months of the year, it’s essential that you keep a close eye on your tire pressure. You can check your owner’s manual to see how much your tires’ PSI value should be at any given moment. Depending on where you get air for your tires, there might be a gauge you can use to measure your pressure before you add more air. It’s best to check your tire pressure at least once a month.
Store Your Tires the Right Way
If you switch to winter tires because you live in an area where it snows, take care how you store your regular tires. Specifically, you want to protect your tires from the sun’s UV rays while they’re in storage. You should also know that ozone can eat away at your tires. Finally, storing your tires in a place where the temperature remains constant better ensures the tire’s sidewall and rubber are protected from damage.
Balance & Rotate Your Tires
Take a glance at your car’s manual to see how often you should have your tires rotated. Whether you have front- or rear-wheel drive determines which tires get more wear, and you want all four of your tires to wear evenly, which is where rotating comes in.
On a related note, you should also make sure the mechanic checks to see if your tires need to be balanced when they’re being rotated. Poorly-balanced tires lead to uneven wear and dangerous vibration.
Be sure to check with your dealership for more info on getting the most out of your tires. An upcoming tire sale could be a great way to save money while enjoying your used car.
There are a lot of places to take used cars to get serviced but perhaps the best place to go for your oil changes, tire rotations, and annual tune-ups is the dealership. Here are a few of the best reasons to take your car back to the dealer for service.
Work with Specialists
One of the best reasons to take cars to get serviced at the dealership is because their technicians are often considered specialists. Some specialize in certain makes and models of cars, but you will usually have your car checked out by someone who is certified and professionally educated to work on it.
Build a Better Relationship
Another reason to take your car to the dealership for service is because you will have the opportunity to build a long-lasting relationship with the dealer. You have regular service and repairs done by technicians you trust, and when you need a reliable used car in the future, you don’t have to even question where you’re going to go to purchase it. You’ve already got someone that you know is going to give you a good price on a great vehicle.
Preserve Your Warranty
Going to a local repair shop might seem more convenient, and they might give you really good pricing, or what seems to be a fair deal. However, it’s important to keep in mind that many times auto repair shops will use aftermarket parts during repairs that void your manufacturer’s or extended warranty. By going to the dealership, you know that they will do the repairs with parts and processes that fall under warranty if applicable.
We know that you have a lot of choices as to where to turn when your car needs service. From repairs to tire rotations, oil changes to tire pressure checks, the dealership is typically going to be your best option in terms of value and lasting service.
Tips on how to read and evaluate whether a car review is valid for you
Forbes released a report last year listing 13 cars to avoid. In this post, we’re going to look closely at the review criteria and provide tips on how to assess each rating. The Forbes criteria consist of the following:
- Consumer Report rating
- Reliability rating
- Overall engine performance and handling
- Interior space
- Fuel economy
- Resale value after 3 and 5 years
- Consumer Report rating
Continue reading “How to Separate Valid From Irrelevant Car Reviews”
You’ve spent several weeks searching for the perfect used car and you’ve found it, or at least you think so. Before you go any further in the purchasing process you should take a step back and ensure that you have thoroughly evaluated your vehicle of choice. Here are two important things you shouldn’t neglect when purchasing a used car or looking at used cars.
Before you buy a used car you should know about the vehicle history. It is important to know the basics, like how many previous owners there have been as well as what kind of maintenance has been performed. Although you can’t judge the reliability of a car solely from its vehicle history, it can often be an excellent indicator.
It is also wise to have a car inspected by a certified mechanic before you think about purchasing it. This can help you validate the vehicle history report. A mechanic may also be able to find and address a potential problem before it surfaces. It is better to know about any mechanical problems now then to find out after you have already purchased the car.
Despite how much you like a particular type of car; you shouldn’t forgo test-driving the vehicle. This is just as important as thoroughly researching the vehicle history. Test-driving a car will help you see how it handles different road conditions. Reading about the car facts is different than seeing them in action on the road. Not to mention by taking a vehicle for a spin, you will have the chance to listen for any strange noises that could indicate a problem.
Just remember that test-driving a car and checking up on its vehicle history is a crucial part of the car buying process. This is especially important since buying a used car means at least one other person has driven it before you.
10 Routine Maintenance Items
If you’re car savvy, you likely spend time inspecting your car every now and then, looking for erosion, rust, moisture and other elements that might affect your car performance. You hear every tick and are totally in tune with how well your car is performing. But what if you’re not an expert, an inexpert even? How many among us drive a car without any knowledge of what really goes on under the hood?
Mechanically inclined or not, we all know that regular car maintenance is a great preventative of future auto repairs. If you’re not up to learning a few tricks and going the do-it-yourself (DIY) route, you need to find a trusted auto shop who will perform the regular maintenance for you. Continue reading “Car Maintenance Checklist for the Inexpert”
Whether buying or leasing a pre-owned vehicle, find your comfort zone with your car payment!
In previous posts, we have talked plenty about how to make the most out of your car buying experience. We have touched on how to manage emotional buying decisions, how to choose the ideal time to buy a car, and what to expect of your salesperson. It’s time to talk about the finances. Continue reading “How to Manage Your Used Car Payments”