While most cars today are built to last, a second-hand car can be a good fit for those with a tight budget. Yet, there are essential things to keep in mind when buying a used car in India. Read on to find out.
Determine the budget
As the price of a used car varies between models and the year of production, knowing your budget is the very first thing before buying a pre-owned car. Overall, this should include the amount of money you want to spend on the vehicle itself along with the extra costs such as insurance and maintenance. In case you take out a loan to buy the car, the interest rate needs to be considered as well.
Select a car model
The next step to any prudent buying decision is to select the car model. You can think about the particular body type you prefer and the features and specifications you wish to be offered on the vehicle. Some good questions to ask yourself may be: Does it fit your lifestyle? What do you buy this car for? After that, make a list of available models within your budget.
Now that you have your list, you need to narrow down the options. To do so, you can take into account the extra costs, if any, the age of the model, and value aspects. With 20 lakhs in your pocket, for example, you can choose between a decent used car and a used luxury model. However, the maintenance cost of a luxury vehicle can be a lot more pricey. Also, it is worth noting that premium cars usually depreciate faster than entry-level ones.
Moreover, while the relatively older vehicles come at less of a price than the comparatively new ones, the maintenance cost of these old models is a huge lot more. Besides, it is not easy to find compatible spare parts and all for old cars. Ideally, you should opt for a three-to four-year-old car. A model that is 10-year-old or above should be avoided at all costs.
Inspect the car’s condition
A thorough car inspection will save you from burning your money on fixing, or replacing the damaged parts. You should carefully check the vehicle both outside, inside, and under the hood. On the outside, look for the condition of the tyre. More importantly, pay special attention to find out whether there exist any dents, rust, or signs of damage as some sneaky dealers may try to cover them with chipped paint and touch-up activity.
Inside, the most common issues are witnessed in the central console, the AC, and the mileage reading. Under the bonnet, the engine should be original and the battery should be solid. Apart from that, you also need to avoid any sign of air suspension. After all the inspecting affairs, the final significant step is to take the model for a test drive. It’s best to invite an experienced driver or a mechanic expert to tag along.
Check the documents
Checking the documents can be intimidating but it should never be overlooked. A good “value-for-money” used car comes with vehicle history, appropriate certifications, warranty, guarantee, and transfer of ownership (i.e. the RC book, PUC certificate, the NOC from the car loan provider, invoice, and road tax receipts). Besides, the payment terms and methods should be clearly stated and written down as a signed document to avoid unwanted hassles.
Pay attention to car insurance
Finally, you should check for the car’s insured value in the policy. This does not only give you the right protection in case of unfortunate situations like an accident but also helps negotiate the car’s price. Moreover, car insurance allows you to determine a reliable used car. Usually, a good used car should have No Claim Bonuses in 2-3 years while frequent claims can be evidence of frequent accidents and maintenance.
There also exists one optional step that would be useful, especially for those looking to buy used luxury cars in India. Considering the fairly premium prices of these models, you may want to have the vehicle scanned by a trusted technician. A full diagnostic scan normally costs you little money and time. In exchange, you will be eligible to discover any potentially pricey issue which is only concealed via the electronics and sensor network.
That completes the 5 key tips to buy a used car in India. Should you follow these tips as well as leverage multiple resources and make use of common sense, you will certainly get a good, reliable used car that meets your wishes at the cheapest price possible.