Anyone who has searched for that perfect used car can attest to the fact that the first decision to be made is whether to purchase an auto dealer or a private seller. Regardless of which you choose, taking the time to learn as much as you can about the vehicles you’re considering will help protect against “buyer’s remorse.” Some important steps involve running vehicle history reports, weighing financing options, considering the cost of insurance, comparing pricing, and getting the vehicle inspected by a third party.
Purchasing from an automobile dealer offers consumers both protection and peace of mind. The laws put in place by the Federal Trade Commission were created to help safeguard consumers. One such law stipulates that dealership must post a “Buyer’s Guide” in the window any used auto on their lot. This document offers the consumer information on whether the car comes with a warranty or if it is being sold “as is.”
Many prefer to purchase their used car from an auto dealer because they usually inspect their fleet of used vehicles and then offer a report of anything that was found during the inspection. Some dealers will even offer “certified pre-owned” or “certified used” cars that come with a warranty and have been thoroughly inspected.
Even so, some used car shoppers like dealing with a private party because it gives them more negotiating power, which often means they pay less for than they would at a dealership; however the cost savings isn’t without risk. For example, once you’ve purchased the vehicle, if you learn that it doesn’t work as expected it can be difficult to track down the person you purchased the car from and they aren’t under any legal obligation to provide you with a refund or rectify the situation in any way.
In the end, regardless of who you purchase your next used vehicle from, it is up to you to do your due diligence in order to protect against purchasing “a lemon.” This means taking your time with each vehicle you’re considering, looking beyond appearances and having the car inspected by someone you trust. Taking these steps will help ensure that you drive home a car you’re happy with for miles to come.