Even though buying a brand new car has its obvious advantages, most of us have to buy a used vehicle at least once in our lives. Used cars are a popular choice of the first vehicle for a young driver, a second vehicle for the family, or a way to test out your desired make and model before investing in an expensive new ride. Find out how to make the right choice when looking for a used car in Nigeria.
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1. Research the cars and prices
Choosing the make and model of your new used car is one of the most important decisions you’ll need to make as a buyer. You may already have a dream model, but if it’s something exotic and rare, think twice before committing to the car - these vehicles are usually very difficult and expensive to maintain.
No one wants to overpay for a product, particularly when it comes to a used car, where a little increase in the price can make a huge difference for your budget. That is why you need to not only know which model you want to buy, but also the average price for it in the market. Compare cars of the same make, model, production year, and condition to determine whether the price set by the seller is fair.
2. Arrange a viewing
Once you’ve selected one or more cars you consider buying, it’s time to see the cars in person. Here is a list of things to check when you’re viewing the desired car:
The shape of the vehicle: are all doors, windows, and other components of the frame perfectly aligned or is there visible frame damage?
The paint job: minor paint defects are totally understandable with a used car, but if there are large chunks of paint missing or the car has been recently repainted, it can point towards an accident that the owner is trying to conceal.
Open the hood of the car and check the insides for dust, rust, and water damage. There shouldn’t be any cracks on the plastic components.
Check the car interior for signs of wear. Turn on the air conditioning to see if it’s working, and check the odometer: the number of kilometers traveled by the car will give you a better idea about its condition.
Take the car out for a test drive, where you will drive it like you normally do, paying attention to every aspect of driving, from odd noises to the correct operation of the brakes.
3. Ask the right questions
Besides the obvious questions like when the car was bought and how much the owner is ready to sell it for, there are several other important questions you need to ask:
Are you the first owner?
Are there any maintenance records?
Has the car been in any major accidents?
Is there something that needs to be repaired right away?
Is there anything else I need to know before buying?
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