First-Time Car Buyer? These Tips Will Help!

It may seem confusing when you plan to buy your first pre-owned car . Prices, terms, financing, and so on may seem overwhelming. Certified Headquarters can help you simplify the process with some first-time pre-owned buying tips.

Figure out what you can afford

The first task is figuring out what is the most you can afford for your pre-owned car. Never finance more than 20% of your take-home pay or even less, because all pre-owned vehicles will require routine maintenance and you need to budget for that and any unexpected expenses for repairs.

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Develop a list of your preferred vehicles

Do some research before you start shopping. Look at reviews of pre-owned vehicles and develop a preference for vehicles with good repair records and lower than average costs over their lifetimes. Create a list of three prospects that will fit into your budget. Another option, if your budget allows, is to look at certified pre-owned vehicles. They carry warranties backed by the dealers and manufacturers which are not available for other pre-owned vehicles.

Obtain the vehicle history report

Unless you know the car’s owner, always obtain the vehicle history report for any pre-owned vehicle that seriously interests you. There are a lot of hidden things that will only show up on a history report such as salvage titles, repairs, non-completed recalls, and so forth. Some dealers may offer them for free, but pay for a vehicle history report if you must because it’s important to check.

Have a mechanic inspect the vehicle

If you have a trusted mechanic, get the vehicle inspected before you spend any money. If buying from a dealer, ask them to allow you to get the inspection performed. A mechanical inspection may find problems not visible to you and save a lot of money later.

Do a test drive

Always test drive a pre-owned vehicle you intend to purchase. Not only do you want to listen for noises or feel problems, but you also should be comfortable in the car. Does it drive in a straight line without vibration? Do all systems work correctly? Is the air conditioning working? Take the time to check everything before signing any paperwork.

Certified Headquarters has been serving Long Island for over 25 years from our location in St. James NY. We have hundreds of vehicles available for your inspection starting as low as a few thousand dollars. Come to Certified Headquarters for your next pre-owned vehicle and you won’t need to go anywhere else!

St James Preowned Car Dealership | First Time Used Car Buyer Tips