Buying a car is usually the second-most expensive purchase you’ll make, so it’s important to consider all the pros and cons before you part with your money. While we would all like to be able to afford to buy a brand new car outright, the truth is that the vast majority of car purchases these days are pre-owned or used models. They’re considerably cheaper than a new model, which means you have a greater choice for your budget. But how do you choose the right used car? Here are a few tips.
What you use your car for will determine what kind of vehicle you buy. If you want a car purely for the daily commute then an economic, compact run-around that’s great on fuel efficiency and easy to park will tick all the right boxes. Our top tip: If you’re commuting into a city centre then consider a hybrid or electric car. Not only are they cheaper to run, but as you’ll fall into the low-to-zero emissions bracket you won’t be charged extra if your city has implemented a clean air or congestion charge.
However, if you have a growing family or plan to do a lot of road trips then a bigger crossover or SUV is probably at the top of your list. Again, hybrids are an option, making crossovers in particular great all-round choices. They also have off-road capabilities for those weekend adventures.
If you’re a real ‘driver’ then it has to be a coupe or sports car. With these, it’s all about performance, road presence, handling and acceleration. There should be enough room in the boot for a weekend bag, but a coupe is the kind of car you get out of the garage at the weekend to enjoy the open road.
While your heart may long for that top-of-the-range model, it is most likely to be your bank balance that dictates what type of used car you buy. Set a budget and stick to it, bearing in mind not just what you want the car to do for you, but how long you intend to keep it for as well. Think about finance as an option too – this could open up the marketplace for you rather than an outright purchase, and also allows you to spread the cost of your pre-owned car over several years.
Don’t just look at the price ticket – consider how much the car will cost you on an annual basis. Factor into account the cost of petrol, services, tyres, consumables, and commuting costs such as clean air charges. A little bit of maths before you make your final choice could help you to manage your motoring finances much more easily.
All cars lose value as they get older, and some depreciate much faster than others. Do a bit of research before you buy as the depreciation rate of your car could make it very difficult to sell on later. Pick wisely and your pre-owned car could be worth a lot more as a trade-in against your next purchase.
While buying from the private classifieds means you may be able to haggle on the price a little, buying from a dealer gives you much more peace of mind. Not only do you usually have at least a year’s warranty, but you’ll also have a week to change your mind and get your money back with no hassle. You can be certain that a pre-owned car bought from a dealership has undergone rigorous checks and testing before it’s put on the forecourt. You’ll also pay a fair price for your car and have access to other options such as finance deals and part-exchange or trade-in options.
If you’re looking for a used car in the UAE, talk to Automall today.