Top Tips For Buying A Used Car

Planning on buying a used car? Shopping in the used car market is the best option for most motorists as it is a way to make big savings compared to buying new, you can get more for your money and avoid the biggest depreciation hit amongst other benefits. While there’re many perks to buying a used car, you will also find that the market can be difficult to navigate and daunting. You hear many horror stories about people shopping in the used car market, so how can you avoid this and come away with the right vehicle at a great price?

Know What You Want

Before you start looking around for cars, you first need to work out what you want. You need to calculate how much you can afford to spend and what your wants and needs are from the vehicle. This will give you the information needed to decide on a category of vehicle that is the best fit, which you can then research to create a shortlist of options.

Educate Yourself On Common Used Car Scams

It is unfortunate, but used car scams are common, particularly when you buy privately. This is why it’s so important to educate yourself on the most common used car scams so that you know what to look out for when shopping in the used car market. A few of the commonest scams include:

  • Clocking
  • Title washing
  • Wire transfer scam
  • Escrow scam
  • Curbstoning

Buy From A Reliable Dealership

One of the top ways to avoid scams and have peace of mind in the used car market is to shop from a reliable used car dealership. You can search for the vehicle that you want, like a used Tesla Model 3, and then find a used car dealership that has this vehicle in stock. A used car dealership will provide consumer protection, plus you can arrange finance deals which can make it much easier to afford. 

Check The Vehicle Over

You should never part with your money before checking the vehicle over and taking it for a test drive. This is the part that many people find daunting, but there is a lot of helpful information online that can help. Additionally, you can bring someone else along for their opinion and pay a mechanic for their assessment (this can be a great way to highlight any problems that the car has). 


When buying in the used car market, you should not shy away from negotiating as this can make a big difference to how much you pay and it is expected. The key is to do your research on car prices, to have a maximum figure in your mind and to be friendly yet firm. If you think you can get a better deal elsewhere, do not be afraid to walk away.

Hopefully, the tips above will come in handy and give you some confidence when shopping in the used car market so that you can find the perfect vehicle.



One Comment

  • Dylan Pemberton says:

    Good article and you’re completely right with all the basics but you also have to consider other factors. Repair bills are really one of the big hidden costs of a used car, especially if it is >3 years old as cars over three years old then have an 84% chance of mechanical or electrical breakdown in the following three years. You’ve also got a big chance of suffering something like cosmetic damage or alloy wheel damage just in general. This is why I use to cover all of this for me and I’m fully protected against all repair costs. Used car prices are really high at the moment due to a shortage of used vehicles which is going to last until at least 2022. If my car is written off or stolen then my insurer would only me current pay market value. Although that is higher at the moment in the current market it is still not what I paid for it which is why I also have GAP insurance from Tidy Alloys. This is even more important for anyone buying a car on finance because if you write it off, your insurer will likely not pay you enough to settle the finance. Most people want to keep their car in showroom condition whether they are selling it or not so buying things like Alloy Wheel Insurance, Tyre Insurance, Cosmetic Repair Insurance, GAP Insurance and MOST IMPORTANTLY getting a Used Car Warranty from a provider like Tidy Alloys is just common sense. You are right to recommend buying from a reputable dealrership but pretty much every dealership will try to sell you massively overpriced policies like this compared to providers like Tidy Alloys. Expect to pay double! So haggle on the price of the used car but go elsewhere for all the value-added insurance policies you need like GAP Insurance. Even the used car warranty from a dealer is usually just a Service Contract and not even an insured policy so your exposure could be huge! There’s a good infographic on the need for all this at for a brand called One Car Warranty, it gives you a lot of statistics and insight in this area.

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