Blog ai used car 0813

Buying a Used Car? 5 Tips You Need to Know

It's car-buying season, and you've got the fever. Dealers will try to pitch you. Private sellers want you to take the automobile off their hands. It's a lot to absorb, but you want to keep your wits about you.

Here are five keys to making the right decisions when car shopping:

1. Know the vehicle you want to buy

Go to Kelley Blue Book and find out about how much you can expect to pay for a car. Take mileage, condition and age into account. When you talk to the seller, ask factual questions about the car (don't ask if it gets good gas mileage—ask how many miles to the gallon it gets). When you know exactly what you are buying, you can make a more informed choice.

2. Write your questions down

As you do your research, write down a question as soon as you have it. If it turns out to be a dumb question, you can ignore it later. If you think of something good to ask and then forget it, you could be in trouble.

Ny2013 bv budget1

3. Have walk-away power

When you are desperate to buy a car, the seller knows it. They won't give you a deal, and they may even try to pressure you into buying. If you know that you can walk away and find a bargain somewhere else, you won't get into a bad deal. It puts you in a position of power, because most often the seller needs to sell the car. You don't need to buy it. Don't get emotionally attached to a vehicle.

4. Bring the cash

Using cash has finality to it. You don't have to worry about being approved for a loan or telling the seller to hold the car for you until Monday. Besides, people get weak in the knees when you flash cash. When you are ready to buy, pull out those hundreds and start counting. Cash is a powerful tool in getting a bargain for just that reason.

5. Go with someone

Take someone you trust (preferably someone who is knowledgeable about autos) with you to look at a car. Inspect the vehicle inside and out and under the hood. It's a second pair of eyes and ears to get information so you don't misunderstand what the seller is saying. Since your friend is not emotionally involved and they don't have car fever, they can help you keep a cool head so you don't make a dumb mistake, like paying too much.

Remember, the more information and discipline you have, the more the purchase will work in your favor.

What tips do you have for buying a used car? Tell us in the comments!

More from the Blog

5 Money Lessons Learned From the Gridiron

There is more to football than championships, tailgating and fantasy drafts. Here are five life lessons you can learn from the popular sport.

5 Money-Saving Tricks for a Happier Halloween

Americans love Halloween. It’s frightening what we spend each year on candy, costumes, and carved pumpkins. Try these five simple tricks to stay on budget this season.

15 Insider Tips for Your Next Debt-Free Vacation

Dave’s Facebook Fans shared how they saved cash this summer while enjoying a week of work-free and debt-free bliss. Here are their top 15 money-saving tips.

25 Myths Broke People Believe

We asked Dave’s blog readers and radio listeners for the most common excuses they hear from friends and family who are up to their eyeballs in debt and unwilling to change.

Fall Fun for the Budget-Conscious Family

Since Dave Ramsey’s Facebook fans always have great ideas to share, we asked them how they enjoy fall activities without spending a fortune.

Why It’s Okay to Enjoy Wealth

Spiritually mature people don’t credit their success to themselves or to their work ethic, and their lives don’t revolve around the pursuit of wealth. Get Dave's take in an excerpt from The Legacy Journey.