Shopping for a used car can be a bit of a minefield, and it can be easy to be conned into buying a poor quality car at an inflated price, even when you’re car savvy. To avoid paying out for a dodgy vehicle, make sure you’re looking for a car dealer that you can trust with these handy tips.
9 Ways To Avoid Being Conned
- Do some research before you go to a dealer in person. Do some research online into the models of cars you think you’ll be looking for and find an average price range. If you know roughly what to expect to pay, it’ll be easier to spot if a dealer is trying to overcharge you.
- Before you visit a dealer, make a phone call to find out a bit more about the used cars they currently have available. Note their phone manners when you call. Are they rude or impatient? A good dealer will be happy to talk to you about their inventory of used vehicles, and should seem polite and friendly. Do they seem knowledgeable about the cars they have?
- Visit an independent dealer over a large chain. An independent or family run dealer, like Crystal Motor Company, won’t be under pressure from head office to make a certain number of sales, so are less likely to hit you with the hard sale. You may also be able to negotiate a fairer deal on the price..
- When you visit a dealer, take a walk around all the cars out on the lot, whether used or new. Do the cars look to be in good condition? Are any awaiting repairs? Are the cars being kept clean? A poorly maintained car suggests the dealer isn’t too bothered about looking after their cars, which means you could end up with a dud vehicle.
- A repair shop on site is a good sign. While not having one doesn’t mean a dealer is poor, if there is one, this suggests that the cars are being properly maintained as any repairs can be made on site. It also means that it should be easier to get any repairs made under your warranty claim.
- Is there a standard warranty on offer? A good warranty offer is a good sign that the dealer is doing everything by the book and want to sell you a quality car.
- Before buying a used car, get an inspection on it. If the dealer seems reluctant to let you have the car inspected, this should set off alarm bells that all is not what it seems.
- Before choosing a dealer, ask any friends who have recently bought a used car if they were happy with the service they received. Check reviews online too, and look out for any consistent complaints that the dealer seems to be failing to deal with.
- If the dealer has their inventory of used cars online, take a look through them. Note down the number plate of any cars that interest you, and run a search. You should be able to double check if the car has previously been in an accident or has been written off before. If there’s a record of this, this definitely suggests the dealer isn’t being honest.