No piece of car-buying advice is more often ignored than this: Have a mechanic inspect a used car before you buy it. Why do buyers plunk down thousands of dollars on a car with little more than an around-the-block test drive and a glance under the hood? Three reasons often deter car buyers from taking this vital step:
Some consumers don't know that good used-car inspections are readily available.
Many car buyers don't want to pay the extra money for an inspection.
Some people anticipate a hassle getting a dealer or private party to agree to an inspection.
With a little planning, the inspection process can be simple, not to mention as revealing as a hidden-camera exposé. If the inspection report is clean, you can buy with increased confidence. If it unearths ugly problems, you can back away or negotiate a lower price to reflect the cost of repairs.
Most sellers will let you take the car for an inspection or agree to have a mobile inspection performed at their home or place of business. If the seller hesitates, you might wonder what they're hiding and consider walking away from the deal.
The Vital Prepurchase Inspection
Experts agree that used cars must be inspected by a qualified specialist before the final negotiation for purchase. The ordinary car buyer, even if mechanically savvy, really can't do it justice. A thorough, professional inspection can tell you whether you're about to buy a peach or a lemon.
You should try to have the inspection performed by a mechanic with whom you've already built a relationship. And ideally, the inspection should include a test drive over a route that includes hills, bumps and potholes to reveal suspension problems and engine performance issues. Having a third party inspect and test the vehicle establishes trust and increases your familiarity with the car. Sure, there's a ton of information available on the web about every model, but what you need at this juncture is detailed information about this particular car. A professional inspection will tell you both what might be wrong with this vehicle and also what's right with it.
Smart sellers, too, know the value of a presale inspection. Having the car thoroughly scrutinized by a reliable third party before listing it provides an additional selling point in the form of a written report. While this is useful information and lends credibility to the seller, you should still insist on getting your own independent inspection before making the purchase.
Talk to us at King's before you buy your used vehicle and we can do your inspection that could save you headace later.