Buying the first car is quite an experience for everyone, whether it is a new or a used car. Well, for a new car, you can just walk in to a showroom and pick what you need, arrange the financing and it will be yours. It is the secondhand car that one ought to be careful about, and avoid the mistakes that many people make. Going by many experiences, you can buy a used car that you will swear at everyday or that you will swear by every day. I will not tell you to check the odometer readings as you already know that, but then, smart-Alec businessmen always clock the odometers…
Be smart, avoid these mistakes here …
Do not go to buy your car alone
Forget what you see in the movies about buying used cars in the western world. This is Africa and if you are not careful with your money, you could be had. Know what I mean? Carry a mechanic along to listen to the car, to look under the hood and see what is there. That way, you will not be buying your used car blindly.
Do not consider one source only
We are in the internet age where everything, including a car, can be bought online. Thus, checking the classified sections of the local dailies alone will not suffice. Buying from your local used car dealerships is not very smart either and so is just waiting until you hear that a friend, or a friend of a friend has a used car for sale. Buy online. Order your used car from Japan, with a JEVIC certificate. You can order with renowned importers like BEFORWARD and you will get value for your money.
Not keeping an open mind
Now, many people looking for used cars become fixated on one brand, and one brand only. That is so wrong. Just because your grandfather drove a Toyota that lasted him 4 decades does not mean that you cannot try other brands, say like a Honda. You will be surprised at what the brands you have never tried have to offer. On the same note, does it mean that if you lack a certain brand you will not buy a car? A car is a car is a car.
Listening too much to the salesmen
Now, I have nothing against the car salesmen, but their job is to make you buy the car at the highest price possible, while yours, if you are smart, is to buy the car at the lowest price possible. Before you buy that used car, do a comparison check on the internet, see what similar models, different years (newer or older) are costing. Once you have a fixed price in mind, start looking for a car that will cost that or less than that and not a penny more. It’s a hard economy.
Not knowing what you want
I know we said to keep an open mind, but again, you will be running a fool’s errand if you do not what kind of car you are looking for. Being your first time to buy a secondhand car from Japan, the variety of offers will be daunting. Be smart. Are you looking for a compact sedan, a van, a hatchback, crossover SUV or full SUV? The choice is yours.
Good luck. You will need it.