FIRST THINGS FIRST
CLEAN IT UP!
Think about it, would you want to buy a used car that’s filthy and filled with someone else’s trash? No, of course not! If you want your car to sell fast, you have got to make it look like one you would buy yourself.
Make sure to fix all of those “minor issues” you might have been pushing off. While you’re at it, check for any other low maintenance that needs to be done. If the brakes and oil need to be changed, change them. If you find any other problems you can’t afford to fix, make sure you let the buyers know about them. Usually, they will be grateful and won’t give you a hard time about it.
SERVICE AND HISTORY
Be sure to collect all of the service records you have on the car, from tune ups to brakes. You’ll need to get a vehicle history report to put any other worries the buyer might have at ease and seal the deal. CARFAX or Experian are the best places to get one of these.
DECIDE ON A PRICE
You have to think about how low of a price you are willing to accept for the sale of your used car. What is your car actually worth on the market? Well, in order to find that out you’ll need to do some homework. You can use sites like Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds to see what others are asking and what the recommended private seller price is. Remember that what you actually sell the car for will probably be less than your asking price.
GET READY, SET, GO!
Get started by taking pictures of the inside, outside, odometer, and highlight any special features the car has. You’re going to want to make as many listings as possible so that your used car will be seen by a large audience, starting with CheapestCarsOnline.com of course! Make use of classifieds and online listing opportunities. You’ll need to calculate costs in order to evaluate how much you can afford. When it comes down to it, slap a “for sale” sign on that car with price and contact info.
You need to be ready to answer phone calls and emails about you used car, and in a timely manner if you want it to go quickly. Be sure to make time to schedule test drives and show the car to potential buyers.
Get your hands on a bill of sale, be ready to transfer the title and registration, and prepare to cancel your insurance on the car.
ACCEPT CASH ONLY. You don’t want to be left with a bounced check and no car. Unless you’re selling your used car to a close friend or family member, it’s best to protect yourself and let the buyer know that this will be a cash only transaction.
It’s all about asking the right questions and doing your homework.
It’s best to start with basic questions, then move on to specifics. Any unusual or long-shot answers should cause a red flag to go up. Asking the right questions is especially important when buying from a private seller and in order to make the best decision in any situation.
Questions to always ask
How many previous owners? When was the car last purchased? Why is the car being sold? If the car has been sold and purchased many times over a short period, there may be something wrong.
What is the current mileage? On average 155,000 miles is too high to purchase a used car but low mileage does not mean the car was well taken care of.
Has it been in any previous accidents?
Has it undergone any major repairs?
Are the service records available?
Have there been any recalls? Has the problem been corrected?
Is the vehicle history report available?
How was the car driven?
Is the price negotiable?
Will an extended warranty be able?
Check the tires and wheels. They can tell you a lot about how the car was driven. The tires should be evenly worn on the inside and outside.
Check both the interior and exterior. Don’t be afraid to feel the paint, run your fingers along the edges of the hood, trunk, and doors. This can give you an idea about whether or not the car has been painted and also reveal if it might have been in a previous accident.
Look under the hood. Does it look clean and well taken care of? Is there battery corrosion? How do the fluids in the clear containers look? Check the oil, is it clear or dark? This can be a hint as to how the car was driven and taken care of.
Drive it cold. A cold car can tell you a lot more than one that’s been warmed up.
Turn the key yourself. Is there any clicking sounds or does it turn over nicely?
Check the controls. Do the lights and windshield wipers work?
Listen to the transmission. When doing a test drive the person you will be purchasing the car from usually tends to point out the sound system and turns up the music. Don’t let them do this or politely turn the music off, you need to listen to the car as you’re driving.
Check the brakes. See how they react when you push down on them in order to come to a quick stop.
Check the alignment. Let go of the wheel for a moment and see if the car pulls in any direction.
The key is to LISTEN, LISTEN, and LISTEN. If anything sounds unusual, you should have it checked out by a mechanic.
Do not base your decision on what you are told. Ask for the facts, service records and vehicle history reports, and research for yourself.
Do not buy a car that needs “minor repairs.” That is only extra money you are going to spend in order to get the car into the condition it should have been in when you purchased it.
Don’t be rude to the car salesman at the dealership. There’s no reason to get duped, but if you’re nice to them, they’ll more than likely be nicer to you when it comes down to negotiation time.
Finally, listen to your gut. If you have any reservations or hesitations do not buy the car.
When buying a used car, or any car for that matter, you want to know you’re making a good investment.
Is this car worth its selling price?
Will it cost me a fortune to keep up?
Is this car going to last?
If these questions have crossed your mind, read on to find out which one of these vehicles might suit your needs. According to Kiplinger, you might even see some of them frequently on the freeway…
1984-1996 Oldsmobile Cutless Ciera
These models hit the streets when GM quality was on the rise and sales were coming to a halt. Their longevity as used cars can be attributed to the fact that all of the kinks had been worked out prior to their production and the great care and service the first owners took.
1989-2002 Geo Prizm
What’s a Toyota Corolla by any other name? A Geo Prizm, along with two more Corolla-like versions in the Chevy Nova and Pontiac Vibe. Built in California by a GM-Toyota team up, these used high mpg cars just keeping running.
1990-present Subaru Wagons
Highly popular in areas of the country that experience all seasons, these used cars have endured the elements. Their all-wheel drive is what allows them to weather all of the storms they encounter.
The key to Volvo’s success is that they built almost exactly the same car over and over again for 25 years. Within this production, quality always preceded style and because of this Volvo safety has left a great legacy.
1992-2011 Ford Crown Victoria / Mercury Marquis
Law enforcement agencies have used them for years, so why not you? Their V-8 engines, body-on-frame construction, and solid rear axle are more than enough to handle anything that comes your way.
1957-1975 Fiat 500
This incredibly compact European favorite still runs along the streets of Italy. It’s size and simplicity have helped it last throughout the years. Though it doesn’t come with a lot of power, it is ridiculously easy to fix.
1975-1985 Mercedes 300D/300DT
These cars are highly reliable because of their inline-five diesel engines. Once again, some of these long lasting luxury cars can be attributed to their caring owners and timely servicing.
1976-present Honda Accord
You probably see a few of these used cars each time you’re on the road. (I know that I was driving one just a few months ago myself.) Honda has a reputation of reliability that precedes them. They also put engineering and engines at the forefront of their designs.
1982-1990 BMW 3-Series
All of these used BMWs are still cruising around thanks to their easily available parts. Although they are readily available, keeping these cars going can come with a pretty high price tag.
1987-2001 Jeep Cherokee
This Jeep was in high demand when it hit the streets as the first small crossover SUV in the U.S. It came with a straight-6 engine and did not have the traditional body-on-frame construction.
Some of the Nicest Used Cars with the Best DealsJust because you’re buying used doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality.
According to Consumer Reports and J.D. Power and Associates, there are many reliable and attractive used cars that come along with nice price tags, all under $10,000.
One that really tops the list is the 2006 Ford Fusion. On average, the ticket price for this used car is $8,625 from a dealership, but when buying from a private seller you can negotiate the price down to about $6,825. This midsize sedan offers a sleek design along with up to 21 city/29 highway mpg. It also ranks among the best in Overall Performance and Design and better than most when it comes to Overall Dependability.
The 2006 Toyota Corolla also made this used car list with its 26 city/34 highway mpg. If you decide to buy from a private seller, you could drive away with this car for as little as $7,180, but a more realistic asking price would be the average of $9,100 from dealerships. After all, this vehicle ranked among the best in Overall Quality and you can’t forget about the great gas mileage.
There is no doubt about why purchasing this next car for under $10,000 would be considered a great deal. The 2006 Honda Civic has an average price of $9,325 and style that will last for years to come. When considering Honda’s reputation of long-lasting cars, the fantastic 28 city/38 highway mpg, and ranking among the best in Overall Quality this used car couldn’t look any better.
With its fun to drive design, the 2006 Mazda Mazda3 is yet another car on the list. It offers 25 city/31 highway mpg and many features that you wouldn’t expect in a vehicle of its class. The average cost for this used car is $9,550 but some private sales could go as low as $7,645. There are many different styles of this car offered making it even more fun to decide which you like best.
The last used car we will highlight is the 2006 Nissan Altima. Depending on how you dress it up or down, this car can serve everyday purposes or give off an almost luxury feel without paying the price. An average price tag of $9,900 and 20 city/27 highway mpg are the reasons why this roomy vehicle is considered a deal.
CheapestCarsOnline.com is a quick and easy way to sell your used car!
When selling a used car you want as much visibility as possible, right?
The more people that see it, the faster you can sell it.
We offer a FREE way to list and sell your used car online.
Well, CheapestCarsOnline.com isn’t just a place for sellers, it’s also great for buyers!
You can view used cars for sale in your area and contact sellers directly from the website.
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