Philadelphia, PA - Are you looking to buy a car? Do you need to save a bit of money? Most people who want to buy a car don't want to pay a fortune (unless that is the point of the car!), so many younger people or those who have families may opt to buy a used car.
However, if you saw the movie Matilda or read the book, the idea of a used car salesman may fill you with a bit of dread, with images of the number plates being stuck on with glue! That is not the case; however, there are some things that you can keep an eye out for when looking to buy a used car. So, read on to find out what they are!
When you are looking for used cars for sale, the last thing you want to do is buy a stolen car. Whether you are buying a car from a private advertisement or you are buying one from a lot, make sure you receive the car's vehicle history report. You can now do this online using the car's vehicle identification number or VIN. However, the seller of the car should also be willing to provide this to you, as it pertains to information about the car's title, its maintenance, and, of course, if it has been in any accidents and needs extensive repairs.
Any person who is selling a car should be happy for the car to go through a mechanical inspection. If they aren't, moving to the next car on your list may be best!
You should aim to have any used car you buy inspected by a qualified mechanic before signing the dotted line. Some car dealerships will provide proof of mechanical checks, but these can sometimes be a bit misleading! A thorough inspection of any car by a mechanic will reveal any underlying issues, such as problems with the car's engine or issues with the battery. It is an additional cost, but it can save you a fortune in the long run with repairs!
Check the Odometer
When buying a used car, you will need to verify the odometer reading against the information in the vehicle history report. Indeed, odometer fraud is one of the most common issues in buying a used car and going back to the dodgy second-hand car dealer Mr Wormwood from Matilda; it used to involve using a drill to reverse the numbers on the mileage gauge. Note that inconsistent readings from an odometer are a red flag, so you should not buy any car that has these issues.
You wouldn't buy a house without these documents, so don't buy a car without them! Make sure all of the information matches to prove that the seller has the legal right to sell the car. This will also allow you to see any outstanding loans on the car and its ownership history to give you a better idea of its age.
Once all that is checked, take it for a test drive and decide if it is the right car for you!
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