April 23, 2024

Shopping For a Used Car? It’s Time to Do Your Homework

What to look for in a used car

Shopping for used cars can undoubtedly be an exciting time, however, there are many other things to consider before you pick out the car, truck, van, or crossover of your dreams. Perhaps one of the most important things to consider isn’t even the car; it’s a tiny pieve of plastic in your purse or wallet.

As of this year, used car values are roughly $20,000 less than those of brand new cars according to cars.com, a website in which users can either sell or buy pre owned vehicles. And while many people are able to purchase an affordable used car outright — think $1,000 to $2,000 or less — most people will take advantage of used car financing.

Financing is an excellent way to purchase the right used car for your needs. But it comes with a catch; good credit. While cash has long been considered king, credit can easily be considered the “queen”. Having a good credit score will greatly increase your chances of getting financed, whether it be through your bank, the dealer, or the manufacturer.

Therefore, it’s important to get a good understanding of your finances, particularly your credit score, prior to shopping for used cars. Creating a budget will help you save time in shopping for used cars, as it will allow you to only search for cars that are within your price range. In addition, knowing your credit score will minimize the chance of any “surprises” in terms of financing, and will allow you to prepare by having a co-signer ready if possible.

In addition to reviewing your financials, you should also do some research as to what to look for in a used car. Writing down questions to ask a mechanic can help with this. Or, simply running an internet search for questions to ask a mechanic can be helpful as well. Remember, there are no stupid questions in terms of doing your research about used cars, except, of course, the ones you don’t ask.

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