Buying a new car is hard on the wallet. Not only do new cars cost more than used cars, but they depreciate in value more quickly, too.
Manual The Short Complete Guide to Buying a Used Car
A vehicle loses the most value in the first few years of ownership. It actually loses a huge chunk of value in its first few seconds off the lot. In other words, when you purchase a new car, you pay the retail price — the price a dealer charges for a new car.
As soon as you're off the lot, the car is worth wholesale price. This is the amount the dealer would be willing to pay if you turned around and tried to sell your car back. Buying a new car means that you are both incurring higher debt and losing value more quickly than if you had purchased a used car. New cars also come with higher insurance costs than used models, as replacement values are higher. Finally, new cars don't stay new for long.
In a day, a week, or a month, you'll get your first scratch or nick.
By the end of the first year, the floor will be stained, the doors will be dinged, and that sweet new car smell will be ancient history. Of course, the monthly payments will linger for many more years. While "pre-owned vehicles" marketing jargon for used cars lack the mystique of new cars, they sure are hard to beat when it comes to practical financial reality. Buying a late-model, low-mile vehicle can be a bargain hunter's dream come true.
Buying used is an opportunity to get the best car for your money. You can often find a late-model used car priced at less than half the cost of a new one.
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Pre-certified dealer programs offer strong warranties, often including the remaining balance of the factory warranty and the opportunity to purchase an extended warranty. For all practical purposes, low mileage, late-model used cars are basically new. If you trade your car in every few years the way many people do, you aren't likely to notice the difference between a used vehicle and a new one because most modern cars will go , miles or more with few mechanical difficulties.
Buying a car that has 40, miles on the odometer is likely to result in 60, or more miles of trouble-free driving. Some vehicles now offer drive-train warranties that cover the most expensive components of your drive train for , miles.
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If you are handy with a wrench, buying a car that needs a little time and attention can dramatically reduce your acquisition cost. Despite the warranties, used cars still come with that unknown reliability stigma. Because you don't know how the car was treated by the last owner or why it was traded in, there is always that fear of buying somebody else's problem. Buying from a dealer is much lower risk, and most offer finance packages where you can spread the cost of the car over several months or years. Learn more by reading our car finance explained guide.
You can still haggle to get a good overall price and a low interest rate, which can often be tweaked along with the repayment term. Some used cars will still be covered by the manufacturer's warranty, but that doesn't necessarily mean you need to go to a franchised dealer for servicing and repairs.
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Independent garages can be cheaper, provided you pick the right one - see our expert guide on how to find a good garage. To speed up the process, the DVLA has an online service available every day, from 7am to 7pm that can be used by both buyers and sellers.
The DVLA will also automatically cancel the seller's vehicle tax and any direct debits, then refund any full months remaining on the vehicle tax. Ready to start car shopping? Find out which models excelled in our rigorous tests - see our new and used car reviews. In this guide 4 articles.
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Buying a used car, or a nearly new car, can result in huge savings compared to buying brand new. Keep reading for our top car buying tips and test drive advice. What is a used car? What is a nearly new car? Nearly new cars typically have no more than a few thousand miles on the clock. It may have a few thousand miles on the clock, but will often have lots of optional extras.
It will have been well looked after in order to impress buyers. It should have delivery miles only — usually no more than a couple of hundred. Top 11 used car buying tips 1. What do you need from a used car? If you already know which particular class of car you're interested, take a look at our round-up of the best and worst new and used cars for each class: Best city cars Best small cars Best medium cars Best luxury cars Best small SUVs and crossovers Best large SUVs and 4x4s Best 7-seater cars Best sports cars 2.
Vehicle provenance checks A used car history or vehicle provenance check will show if a car has outstanding finance, or has previously been stolen or written off by an insurance company. Haggle hard!
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Car to trade in? In this guide 4 articles How to buy the best new car. How to buy the best used car. How to check and test drive a used car. How to buy a motability car. Best small SUVs and crossovers. Just make sure that there is no pre-payment penalty wrapped up in the terms.
The main advantage of paying cash for a car is not having a monthly payment. Another advantage is that you'll own the vehicle free and clear and are open to buying your own auto insurance and not what the finance company will have you buy. The third advantage is that you'll most likely be paying only what the car is worth and not an inflated value due to total interest over the life of the loan.
The biggest con of paying cash is that it will likely limit what you're able to buy. You may have to buy an old car instead of a new car and opt for fewer options or luxury features. Another con is that taking out money for a vehicle may deplete your emergency fund or take money away from your investments.
In general, you probably shouldn't completely drain your savings account to pay cash for a car. If you've decided that you want to pay cash for your next car, then there are a few strategies you can employ to save that money. First, find out what kind of car you want to buy and find out what it's selling for. You can then employ a manual or automatic savings program to deposit an amount every month to work up to having enough money to pay cash. As previously mentioned, many car dealers really want you to take their loans as it yields extra money for them.
However, most car buying advisors will tell you anyway to always negotiate the firm final price of the vehicle and not the monthly payment. In most cases, it's probably better not to tell them explicitly that you're paying cash. Instead, focus on getting the final price that you want and then tell them you're paying cash.
When it comes to paying cash for a used car or new car, remember that there are fees on top of the final purchase price. Whether used or new, there will always be licensing fees and the sales tax on the vehicle. If you buy from a car dealer, there are several other fees they may include, but those are usually always negotiable into the final purchase price of the vehicle. Another important thing is to get an insurance quote on your car of choice before going into the sale.
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