Private used car sellers are in many ways much different to work with as a buyer than dealerships. There are some definite advantages to buying a car from a private seller, but also some things that we need to keep in mind about them as we go through the process of making this purchase. There are some things every consumer should keep in mind and some things to look out for when dealing with a private party selling a used car.
Advantages of Private Party Sellers
There are some great benefits to making the choice to buy a car from a private seller. For instance, on average the price we end up paying for a car is lower than it would be buying from a dealer. This is great for all used car buyers, most of whom are at least partially motivated to go this route because of the money issue. Getting a good deal on a used car from a private seller is possible if you look around for a good car near you at a good price.
It is also nice to work with the original owner of the car because it is sometimes easier to get information on the car’s history this way, especially when the seller is actually the one who bought the car new from a dealer. Owners that keep good maintenance records are especially easy to work with because they normally have written information on oil changes and other types of maintenance and service work, details that you might not get paying used vehicle prices online. But there are some potential pitfalls and drawbacks that we need to bear in mind as well.
Used Car Pitfalls to Avoid
Sometimes trying to buy from the original owner of a car, you have a harder time negotiating and actually getting a car for what it’s worth because they think if they took care of it it’s somehow worth more than the blue book value, even though that value actually already reflects the care that went into ownership. Private sellers might also try to downplay defects in cars, as dealers sometimes can as well, and they are likely to refuse a test driver, especially since they sometimes cancel car insurance on these cars as soon as they’ve bought their replacements.
It is important when buying a newer used car especially or any one that you are going to spend significant money on to ask for an independent inspection by a qualified mechanic. If the seller refuses to allow this, it is a red flag that you shouldn’t miss. There are plenty of vehicles out there on the market at any given time and we should never make the mistake of getting overly attached to one. Avoid letting emotions get in the way of your better reason, and make sure you keep a clear head when negotiating. It is smart actually to ask a seller how low they are willing to go before you even see the car so that you can skip all the haggling and just get down to the bottom line.
Find a Great Used Car
Getting a good deal on a used car is something that we can easily achieve if we pay attention to what we’re doing and follow a simple formula. Don’t be afraid to ask questions like why the seller is getting rid of the vehicle or whether the odometer reading is accurate. You can learn a lot about private used car sellers just from asking them a few questions and listening to their answers.