When it’s time to head out in the San Diego, Kearny Mesa, and El Cajon areas to look for the right used car, you’ve got a few steps to take to make sure that you’ve got the best approach on how to buy a used car. At Norm Reeves Toyota San Diego, we’re here to help you by providing you with some helpful tips and tricks on how to get the most out of shopping for a used car, with the end result of having a car that you can truly rely on to help you get around!
How to Buy a Used Car
- Determine Your Budget- Before you start exploring your options, you’ll need to set your budget on how much you’re willing to spend. This will help you narrow down the possible vehicles in your consideration based on their cost.
- Consider Your Needs- If it’s just you, you may want to consider getting a compact sedan. If you’ve got a growing family, a midsize SUV may be right. Determine if you’ll need the additional cargo/cabin space based on your current and possible future situation.
- Browse the Selection at Your Local Dealer- If you’ve got a dealership nearby, get started by browsing the inventory online and use the filters to narrow your search based on price, make, model, features, and mileage so you can find models that meet your specifications.
- Read the Vehicle History Report- This important document can tell you about any accidents the vehicle was in, any significant repairs or maintenance, how the owner kept up with service, and more.
- Take a Test Drive- Getting actual experience with the vehicle and gauging its performance and features can really help you decide how you feel about it.
Browsing the Certified Pre-Owned Selection
When you’re scouring the lots at your local used car dealership, you may want to narrow your focus on the Certified Pre-Owned selection of vehicles. These models go through a meticulous multi-point inspection from factory-certified technicians that make sure the vehicle is in great condition. These models are also only a few years old and are under 60,000-80,000 miles. These models even include:
- Basic Limited Warranties
- Free CARFAX® Vehicle History Report™
- Limited Term of Roadside Assistance
Understanding the Vehicle History Report
When it’s time to seriously consider a used car, you’ll want to take a closer look at its vehicle history report. This document can tell you everything about the vehicle’s history, so you can see if it’s in suitable condition for you to purchase and rely on as your set of wheels. You should look for:
- Accident History- If a vehicle has been in a few accidents, it most likely received extensive work to the body, as well as replacement parts and components. While this isn’t horrible, it could lead to performance issues down the line.
- Number of Owners- Factor in the age of the vehicle and how many owners its had. If a few drivers had the vehicle in short periods, it could indicate that the vehicle is prone to issues and you’ll want to avoid taking on the costs.
- Maintenance/Service Records- When you set out to buy a used car, you want to make sure that it was a vehicle that was cared for over the years, and that the previous owner kept up with the routine services like oil changes and tire rotations, and had the necessary parts replaced.
Start Shopping for Your Used Car Today
At Norm Reeves Toyota San Diego, we’re happy to help drivers find a used car that they can rely on. We hope that these tips and tricks on how to buy a used car helped you out. You can actually get started on your journey by checking out our selection of used cars to find the one that’s perfect for you!
Drop by Norm Reeves Toyota San Diego to get started! We’re here to help drivers in San Diego, Kearny Mesa, and El Cajon find the right car!