Buying a Used Car says Carol

car 150x150 Buying a Used Car says Carol

Do you or your children need a good used car? Is it stressing you to look for a used car? Buy with confidence by considering the following tips:

* Think about how long you will keep the car, what color, size, and features you want. And, of course, what you can afford.
* Talk to people who have a car like you are considering buying. What do they like or dislike about the car?
* Talk with your bank or credit union about their terms for a used auto loan.
* Use resources about used cars, such as Edmunds’s Used Cars Prices and Ratings (www.edmunds.com), Consumer Reports, Monthly Kelly Blue Book (www.kbb.com).
* Check out the dealer’s reputation at the Better Business Bureau (www.bbb.org).
* Ask the dealer for the CARFAX on the vehicle and/or how you can contact the previous owner.
* Check with banks and credit unions for repossessed cars to pay off defaulted loans.
* If you buy from a private owner, ask for the car’s maintenance and repair records. Check the title to make sure the seller is the legal owner.
* If you buy from a government, private or online vehicle auction, be prepared to pay on the spot. If you are not a car expert, take a friend who is.
* Inspect the car in daylight and good weather.
* Road test, checking out everything on that dashboard — lights, radio, wind shield wipers, heater, etc. Listen for unusual engine noises. Drive on a variety of roads. Do the brakes grab?
* Look for warning signs such as touch-up paint and poor-fitting doors– either could mean the car has been wrecked.
* Check for uneven wear on front tires. Uneven wear could mean bad alignment or suspension damage.
* Look for signs of odometer tampering. White lines between numbers that don’t line up or vibration of the 1/10 mile number while the car is moving are indications of this.
* Regardless of where you purchase the car, have your mechanic check it over before you make a final offer. If you buy at an auction, remember you have to bring a mechanic with you.

Have fun shopping. Buying a used car can be a great way to save money — if you do your homework before you buy.

Do you have any good tips to share?

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About Carol Odell

Carol J. Odell, is the CEO of the Better Business of Southern Colorado and has been with the BBB for twenty years. Even before her BBB life she was involved in the community as a volunteer and co-owner of a manufacturing business. She is a published author, speaker, wife, mother, and grandmother --- and enjoys all of these roles.