While most people dream of having a beautiful, reliable car to drive around, this isn’t the reality for many. Whether it’s due to having very little money in the bank or bad credit, there’s a large number of people out there who are just looking to get the best possible car that they can afford. In many instances, this means buying a used car.
If done right, you can make a great purchasing decision when buying a used car. To help you see how you can do this, here are three things to consider before buying a cheap used car.
Get Your Budget Right
The very first thing you need to figure out when buying a used car, or any car for that matter, is what type of budget you’re working with.
According to Philip Reed, a contributor to NerdWallet.com, you can either set your budget based on the total amount that you can afford to pay or based on how much you can afford to pay each month. If you’re going to make your budget based on a monthly payment, make sure you also consider things like what your interest rate will be for your loan and how much money you have to put as a down payment. If you’re not sure how all of these numbers come together, you can use a loan or payment calculator to help you see what your options are and how things will differ based on various numbers.
Don’t Negotiate In Person At First
As with all car buying experiences, you can and should negotiate the price when you’re buying a used car. However, Evan Tarver, a contributor to Investopedia.com, shares that if you leave all of your negotiations for when you’re there with the car, you lose a lot of your leverage.
By starting your negotiations before you’ve even seen the car, you’ll be basing your negotiations off of the actual stats of the car rather than how you feel about seeing it. Also, once you’ve driven the car and have decided within yourself that you want it, you’re more likely to go with less than ideal pricing so that you can leave with the car at the end of the day.
Always Get An Inspection
Before you finalize the purchase of your car, especially when you’re buying a used car that’s relatively cheap in price, you’ll want to ensure that you get the car properly inspected by a professional mechanic.
According to Sabah Karimi, a contributor to U.S. News and World Report, it’s worth keeping in mind that the owner of the car is getting rid of it for a reason. So if that reason has anything to do with how the car runs, you’ll want to know this before you buy the car and attempt to drive it on a regular basis.
If you’re in the market for a car and are considering getting something used and inexpensive, use the tips mentioned above to help you get the best car for the price.