We all remember the thrill of getting behind the wheel of our first car, but let’s be honest, the process behind buying a used car can be quite overwhelming and stressful. Unlike buying a brand new car, there are several more aspects to be aware of that can make buying a used car something where all sorts of things can go wrong.
We’re here to take the weight off your shoulders a little bit, helping you to be aware of the essentials when looking to buy a used car. Make sure that you take your time as you navigate your way through the interesting world of used cars, and never rush into a decision before doing your research and consulting a used car buying guide.
What features are you looking for?
Remember, that this isn’t like buying any other second-hand item, as the price usually carries a certain weight. So the first thing you should consider before jumping onto Gumtree, or visiting your local car dealership to start searching for cars, is to examine your requirements, and what specific types of features you are looking for. What budget constraints are you operating within, and how far are you willing to push these? Bare in the mind that there is usually a negotiation period with the owner and the interested customer, so factor this into your initial offer.
What purpose will it serve?
Are you simply looking for a used car that will get you from A to B, or are you searching for a new everyday SUV that could fit your whole family? Establish what the car will primarily be used for, as this will help to form the basis of the types of cars you’ll be looking for, as well as their respective age and condition.
For example, if you need a family car and are willing to spend a little bit more for the best safety features, you may want to be searching for a more modern car, which focuses more on optimising safety. It’s useful to also check out some of the used car safety ratings and compare these with your requirements, particularly if you have young kids who need booster seats.
Inspecting the Car
Once you’ve narrowed down your search, you can start heading out and making those initial first inspections. Remember that it always pays to bring a friend or family member along with you to the inspection. Having an extra set of eyes and someone to add some more questions is helpful for ensuring you’re properly validating the quality and condition of the used car.
One important thing to verify with the owner is whether or not the car is debt-free. The great thing about buying from a dealer and not a private seller is that the dealer has a legal obligation to guarantee to you that the car is debt-free.
Ask about the car’s history
As well as asking the classic questions such as the car’s age and mileage, you can ask about the car’s history and service record. You’ll be able to cross-reference this with the service logbook to see when and where the car was serviced. Always check on the current registration and insurance policy of the vehicle, so you know what costs to expect before you pull the trigger on a purchase. Double-check that the insurance is arranged and set in motion before you get behind the wheel of the car.
Advantages of Buying From A Dealer
If you’re looking to buy a used car from a dealership, you can also benefit from the fact that you can trade-in your old car in the process. Unless you’re a real gearhead, you’ll probably want to get a full independent mechanical report on the car that you’re looking to buy. That way you can rest easy knowing that you haven’t missed any glaringly obvious issues with the used car.
When you’re buying a used car from a dealer in WA, if the car is less than 10 years old and has covered less than 150,000km, you’re entitled to a 5000km or 3-month (whatever comes first) statutory warranty. If the car is between 10 and 12 years old and has between 150,000km and 180,000km under its belt, this statutory warranty applies for 1500km or 1 month.
As perfect as the car may look on paper and in person, you won’t have a full understanding of the car until you take it for a test drive. If you can try and take the car around some quiet roads, you can listen closely to see if there are any unusual problems or noises that the car creates. If it’s a manual car, test to see if you can shift between all gears smoothly and ask the seller about any particular nuances that may benefit you when driving the car.
You can explore our stock to examine the full range of used cars that we have available at Perth City Peugeot. You’re more than welcome to head down to our dealership to take one for a test drive and ask us any sort of question you may have.