Buying a car should be fun; it’s meant to be an exciting time, after all who doesn’t look forward to a new set of wheels; however, there can be pitfalls and when you’re making what will be one of the most expensive purchases of your life, you need to make sure you buy the car that’s right for you.
Do plenty of research, remember what your ‘must haves’ are, use your head and don’t get led by your heart, follow our tips on what to look for when you’re buying a used car and you’ll be buying with confidence.
Of course, different makes and models vary in their reliability, this is true of both new and used cars. Buying an approved used car, means the car will have been subjected to strict checks giving more reassurance. You can always take a look at the Reliability Index Top 100 here to see how the used cars you’re looking at fare.
Dealerships may register cars to themselves in order to reach a manufacturer target. These cars are then offered for sale having done delivery mileage only, but with a discount on the cost if purchased as a new car. Is there a catch? If you buy a pre-registered car you will be the second registered owner, the dealership will be the first, but you will save on an identical ‘new’ car.
Nearly new cars usually represent good value for money against new cars. They may be a pre-registered car, see here, an ex-demonstrator which the dealership has used for customer test drives or an ex-staff company car. Mileage can vary between delivery mileage only to just a few 1,000.
Approved used cars will have undergone the manufacturer’s rigorous inspection programme and any faults will have been rectified. An approved used car will also come with a warranty and may have other added peace of mind extras such as roadside assistance; this means an approved used car will cost more than one which is not manufacturer approved, but will come with added peace of mind.
Every manufacturer has a different inspection programme for their approved used cars. All cars which have a manufacturer approved used car seal of approval will have undergone a mechanical inspection, with any areas not up to manufacturer standards having been rectified. Checks vary from brand to brand but will typically include checking all mechanical parts and their operation; all bulbs; tyre tread depth; brakes and bodywork. Manufacturer’s only give their seal of approval once these extensive checks have been passed. You can see the Volkswagen checklist here.
To avoid being seduced by a slinky coupe, when what you really need is a spacious SUV, make yourself a checklist of your absolute must haves and ideal preferences:
Once you’ve found what you think is the perfect car you need to look at it with a critical pair of eyes, to make sure that you’re fully happy:
Swansway sells many different makes and models and many are very popular as used cars; our best-selling used cars include:
It’s always best to have a monthly budget for your car, but remember paying the monthly finance payments isn’t the only expense you need to budget for; here’s what you need to take into consideration:
Yes, you can test drive any Swansway Motor Group used car with pleasure.
Here are 5 things to check on test drive before you even move off:
Here are 5 more things to consider when you’re behind the wheel on a test drive:
Dependent upon the age and mileage of the car you can use many different types of finance package to purchase a used vehicle, these include personal contract plans and hire purchase agreements, see our Finance page for further details.
We have a handy valuation tool on our website; alternatively, if you would like a definite valuation against a vehicle you’re interested in purchasing then come into to any of our centres and we’ll be happy to give you a valuation of your current vehicle.
We accept all cars and vans in part exchange whether you are purchasing a new or used vehicle.
Not on a true leasing package, but you can on a personal contract plan, which is similar to a lease. See our Finance page for details.
And finally, when you’ve chosen your used car, been for a test drive, selected the finance that suits you best and you’re off to pick up your new wheels:
And finally, when you’ve chosen your used car, been for a test drive, selected the finance that suits you best and you’re off to pick up your new wheels. In all the excitement of picking up your new car or van, it’s easy to forget the documentation you need, so here’s a checklist:
If you’re using your current vehicle as part exchange you need to bring:
If you’re not using your current car as part exchange:
Make sure you bring this documentation, to avoid the disappointment of not being able to collect your new car.