Getting a car whether it is brand new or used is often very stressful. Most of us know going in that we are about to enter into battle. Their goal is to make as much money as they can and yours is to save as much as possible, it’s just a question of will and maybe a bit of knowledge.
When buying used cars, especially used cars for sale by owner it is of the utmost importance to make sure you don’t get taken advantage of. It is one thing to buy from a lot because you usually have legal recourse in the case of a deal gone wrong but it is easier to get taken by an individual. One of the best possible tips to save money in regards to for sale by owner is to get the car checked by a professional mechanic before you buy the vehicle.
Pay for a thorough inspection if you can afford it. This may depend on the cars value and your expertise in auto mechanics but suffice it to say that a few hundred dollars spent now could save you thousands later. One tip is to see if you can get the owner to split the cost with you. Even if they do not, you often get a sense of if they are trying to take advantage of you in this process.
There are many ways sellers try to trick potential buyers. One trick is to disconnect the speedometer/odometer. This will make the vehicle seem as though it has much fewer miles on it than it actually does. Sometimes they even buy a newer speedometer from the salvage yard to trick you. Another thing that can be a clue is brand new parts, particularly parts like tires and new pedals or pedal covers. Some people try to say the vehicle has been driven on the freeway most of the miles but the clutch pedal is worn through to the metal and the car has only fifty thousand miles on it, one way to cover up that fact is to buy new pedal covers. The new tires might be an indication of covering up a bad alignment or more serious structural issue like a bent frame.
Little clues like this can often be picked up on by a skilled mechanic. Spend the money if you can. At the very least it would be a good idea to bring someone along with you to evaluate the vehicle that knows a bit about cars if only on a preliminary basis.