Buying a brand new car is expensive and comes with its own set of headaches and problems. Plus, how many people have 25,000+ KWD in cash to drop on something fresh on the lot? That’s why many of us resort to purchasing used vehicles.
Most dealerships are on the up and up and provide good services. However, you mustn’t go to your local used car dealership blind. You don’t want to drive off the lot with a lemon. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the key things you should know about buying used cars.
Take the Test Drive Seriously
No matter how much you love the car, don’t skip out on taking it for a spin. Listen for any weird noises, and check to see if any of the warning lights are on. If there’s a strange smell, that could be a sign of mildew or mold. If you feel the car pulls to one side, the car report will most likely bring up a previous accident or two and a test drive will surely be a good way to see if the car is in good condition. Make sure it’s comfortable and has all the bells and whistles you need. Ideally, this will be a long-term purchase, so a test drive is essential when buying a used car.
Don’t Rely Too Much On The Odometer
The miles/kilometers on the odometer are a good measure of how much wear and tear the car has been through. However, like in the movie Matilda, it’s possible to run the numbers back and make the car seem newer than it really is. It’s called odometer fraud and it’s very difficult to spot.
Also, the mileage only shows a portion of the story. A car with a high number of miles on it, but has been well serviced and maintained over the years can be as good or better than a car with lower miles.
Get the Used Car Inspected by An Experienced Mechanic
Most of us aren’t car experts, so it’s good to have someone who is on your side. An experienced mechanic can see signs of an accident or point out potential things that can cause trouble in the future.
A reputable dealership selling used cars shouldn’t have issues with the request. So, if you’re getting push-back, that might be a good sign to turn tail and find a new place to shop.
If it’s a private seller, avoid the vehicle if they can’t provide sufficient maintenance records or won’t let a mechanic YOU trust come check it out. That’s a major red flag.
Read more: What are the procedures for purchasing a used car?
Don’t Rush to Buy
Any car is going to be an expensive purchase, so you need to avoid making an impulsive buy because you fell in love with the first car you see. Be wary of a salesman trying to get you to sign the dotted line too fast.
Make sure you do your research on the car’s history. And don’t be afraid to shop around to make sure you get the car at the best price. Use resources such as Motorgy’s 71-point inspection, that way you know you’re getting a fair price for the condition of the car.
Set Yourself a Reasonable Budget.. and Stick to It
Going in with a firm budget keeps you from overspending on a used car. Dealerships often try to sell you a car with a higher sticker price. You have to be firm and confident so you don’t give into your notion.
Also, remember to account for other costs in your budget such as registration and other costs that come with buying a car. The more money you keep now, the more you can use down the road for the car’s maintenance and other issues that might pop up.
If You Can’t Pay Cash, Use Credit
Many of us don’t have thousands of dinars on hand to buy a car outright. Luckily, there are many finance options available. Here are a few places that provide loans for car purchases:
- Traditional Banks: Local branches like KFH, NBK or ABK, provide loans to help buy a car. Check with your personal bank to see what options are available for you.
- Other Loans: You can finance your new or used car with CFC for up to 25,000 KWD or 25 times your basic salary with a one to five years financing period. Check the rates and draw a comparison.
- Dealerships: Most dealerships also offer in-house financing options. They can give you a good deal, but make sure you shop outside for other loans to make them compete on rates.
Remember to Include Insurance in Your Budget
If you decide to finance the car, you will have a monthly payment until the loan is complete, but you will also need to have insurance for the duration of the loan, which will increase that monthly cost.
Read more: Car insurance in Kuwait
Don’t Forget About Add-Ons and Warranties
When it’s time to seal the deal, they will try to entice you with add-ons and upgrades (i.e. upsell) to squeeze a little more money out of you. These are typically things like paint protectors, gap insurance, extended warranties, or other miscellaneous products.
If any of it sounds good or helps you, then feel free to take them. However, don’t do it if you feel you’re being pressured into it. Remember, you have the final say on everything.
Don’t Be Too Cheap!
The cheaper the car, the more expensive it turns out in the long run. That’s not to say everyone will be buying lemons, but it’s good to find the sweet spot for your budget. Spending more now can save you a lot more in the future.
Looking to buy a used car in Kuwait safely and securely? Then look no further because we at Motorgy, have got you covered!