Finding a Used Car That Works for You

It’s always nice to get a good deal on a vehicle. However, paying a respectable price for a car that doesn’t fit your lifestyle isn’t necessarily a good move. When shopping for used cars, people should take their time and look at cars they will actually be happy owning. As you start your search for a pre-owned vehicle, keep these tips in mind.

Expand Your Research

The dealership down the road might absolutely have the right car for you. Even if that’s the case, it’s still worth comparing prices at a few different locations so you can be sure you’re getting the best deal. By checking around town to see the different options, you can inspect more vehicles and get a better idea of what you’re really looking for. It’s easy to fall in love with the first car you test drive, so fight that urge and shop around a bit before committing.

Cross Check Reports

Fuel efficiency is very important to a lot of people, but how do you define that efficiency? When compared to a giant truck, most mid-sized vehicles seem economical. You need to compare similar vehicles to make sure you getting the best of the best when it comes to the features that are most important to you. Looking over multiple vehicle reports will help with this.

Know Your Finances

Once you start getting comfortable behind the wheel of a vehicle, you might try to convince yourself that you can spend more than you initially planned. If you show up at a dealership with a good idea of your spending limit, it will make the conversation you have with the dealer easier and help you avoid making a costly decision.

When people set out to buy used cars, they need to look for more than just the best deal. Put in the time and research so you can get a pre-owned car that meets all your needs.

Understanding Which Car Is Right for You

When you start shopping for used cars, it quickly becomes apparent that you have plenty of options. With makes and models from every year imaginable, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and go with the first car within your price range. Instead of caving too early and not getting the best deal, you should learn more about how to shop for a preowned vehicle that will actually work for you.

Short or Long Term

Is this a transitional car or something you hope to drive into the ground? If you need this car as a short-term replacement, sticker price and fuel efficiency are probably your biggest concerns. Think about how long you’ll actually have to use the vehicle, and then assess which features you can live without. If this is the car you’ll be driving for the foreseeable future, the amount you pay upfront should matter less than how long the car is expected to last. A little extra money at the outset is well worth it if you get another five years out of the vehicle.

Exterior or Interior Issues

Both the inside and the outside of the car are important, but you need to focus on what is actually selling you on (or turning you off of) certain used cars. If you can get a good vehicle at a good price and the only thing giving you pause is the color, is that an issue you can overcome? Remember that cars can be repainted, and perhaps you can make it a goal to save up for a color change. Similarly, is a cosmetic issue with the interior enough to make you look past a good deal?

When you really look at the used cars in your area and try to think about how you’ll feel once the novelty has worn off, it becomes easier to identify your real needs. Make sure you put in this effort when you start shopping around

Smart Shopping for Used Cars

Buying a used car can be daunting if you haven’t purchased one before. There are always concerns about the condition of the vehicle, but if you work closely with a reputable dealer specializing in used cars, you can get a dependable vehicle for a great price. Asking the right questions and doing some research is part of the process.

Find a Dependable Make and Model

Online consumer groups can help you find makes and models that are rated well for reliability and low repair costs. If a car doesn’t have a good resale value, there may be a reason. Don’t forget to check gas mileage and maintenance costs as well.

Test Drive Used Cars

Never purchase any vehicles without taking them out for a test drive. Listen to the engine, pay attention to any knocking or pinging and get a feel for how smooth the ride is. When you test drive, make sure you take the vehicle on local roads as well as the highway. Trying a used vehicle under a variety of condition will help you narrow down your options to cars that you’re truly comfortable driving.

Get a Vehicle History Report

Request a vehicle history report from one of several online services. You’ll need the vehicle identification number (VIN number), which any auto dealership can provide you. You can also see it in the lower corner of the driver’s side window when you’re looking at it from outside. When you check the report, look for accidents, water damage and other issues that could affect the car’s performance.

Consider Other Costs

Insurance, monthly maintenance and fuel economy all figure into the actual cost of a car, not just the sticker price. Get insurance quotes, look into maintenance costs and check the mileage estimates. All of these will impact the car’s actual cost.

Proper research and working with a trusted automobile dealership will guarantee you the best price for your next used car.

Getting the Best Interest Rate on a Used Car

You’ve narrowed down your search for the perfect used car for your needs and budget and are ready to address your finance options. If you won’t be buying the car outright, you’ll need to finance it, which means paying interest. To avoid paying more than necessary for used cars, you’ll want to keep your interest rate as low as possible, which you can easily do with a few good tips.

Think About Financing Through the Dealer

While you might think financing your car through a dealer is automatically more expensive, the truth of the matter is that doing so could net you a pretty solid deal. This is because dealerships can offer incentives like zero-percent financing and other specialized low rates. Check to see what’s on the table before you think about financing elsewhere.

Consider a Certified Pre-Owned Car

It seems counter intuitive, but older cars usually come with higher interest rates when compared to newer models. Instead of thinking you’re better off with a new model, consider the fact that dealerships sometimes have zero-percent interest specials on their certified pre-owned cars. Be sure to ask about them as you’re walking up and down the aisles checking out cars.

Consider Your Term Length

If it’s at all possible, get a car loan with the shortest term length possible. The reason for this is that a shorter term length equals a shorter repayment length, which means a lower amount of interest paid over the life of your loan. Another great thing about getting a term length as short as possible is that you don’t have to worry as much about being upside down on your loan, which is what happens when you owe more on your car than it’s worth.

As you can see, there are several things you can do to keep the interest rate low on your used car. Be sure to put these tips to good use.

Buying a Used Car: How to Choose a Payment Option

When the time comes to buy a used car, there are many financial factors to consider. Perhaps your budget will narrow your used car choices, or you may not be aware of the payment options available. We are ready to show you some ways you can pay for your vehicle and to show you that the make and model you desire most may well be within your reach if you plan carefully.

Consider the Time Frame

As you consider payment options, one of the first factors you might want to think about is how long you will be paying for your car. Whether you secure a loan through the bank or choose in-house financing with us and depending on your credit, your loan could be as brief as two or three years or as long as five. It is important to understand the exact terms of the length of your loan before you sign off on a vehicle.

Give Yourself Time

Even if you find yourself needing a new vehicle for your commute to work or school, you should avoid jumping into a deal right away. Take the time to consider your options, as this may help you avoid hefty payments that might be hard to handle later on. For example, ask yourself whether your current car is a valid trade in or if you can secure a down payment that may help lower the cost of a vehicle.

Review Your Budget

One mistake many people make when they shop for used cars is to miscalculate how much they can afford to pay monthly. To avoid this error, you will need to factor more than just the car payment into your auto ownership budget. The cost of insurance, gas and other taxes and fees that will need to be paid when you purchase a vehicle should all be included in your budget to ensure you do not overextend it.

Buying a used car can be a challenge, especially if you are unsure of your payment options. However, being prepared and asking the right questions can help you get the car you want at an affordable payment.

Advice and Negotiation Tips for Shopping Used Cars

Buying a vehicle is never easy, but buying a used vehicle is downright difficult. You will get your hopes up numerous times by an ad that seems too good to be true, only to be let down when, in fact, it was too good to be true. Someone might advertise their car as “Like new! Mild wear and tear! Runs great!” when in actuality, it is very much old, has extensive wear and tear and doesn’t run at all. Yes, it happens. That is why, when shopping for used cars, you should know where to turn and how to negotiate. Don’t fall for a scam and bring home a lemon, and use the following advice to help ease the pain of your search:

Go to a Dealer

Sure, you know someone who found a great deal on Craigslist, or are even friends with that lucky person who bought a car on Ebay ten years ago and it’s still running great today. However, those people are the exceptions to the rule that states that you should never, ever shop for used cars online. Not only is it impossible to tell the true condition of a vehicle without actually seeing it, but also, you’re risking spending thousands of dollars a car that may take a dump on you ten minutes after purchasing it. Then, because there is no warranty, you’re stuck with an old car that doesn’t run and no money to fix it.

Find the Car You Want

Before you head to the dealership, know what you’re looking for. If you head to the dealership without a clue, you may end up purchasing a vehicle that is over your budget and all wrong for your needs. Identify the traits you need in a new used car: good gas mileage, three rows, ample storage space, etc. Once you do this, set a budget and head to the dealer.

Negotiate Like a Pro

Negotiating for a fair price might be the most daunting part of the car buying process, but it’s necessary. Dealerships expect you to negotiate and price their cars accordingly. Use all the knowledge you have regarding the vehicle to bring the price down.

Use the tips above when shopping for used cars to get the best your money can buy.

Used Trucks Are Available in Many Styles and Sizes

It’s time to hit the road for a trip, but you’ve known for quite awhile that your current truck needs to be replaced. The days of its sleek finish are long gone, and it is hard to hear the radio thanks to the loud engine noise. You may have a lot of questions about your new set of wheels. We have the answers you need. Visit our dealership, and you will find a plethora of used trucks. We will help you pick a truck that fits your lifestyle and budget.

Before you visit, there are a few questions you can ponder. Think about how you will use your new vehicle. Will you need a compact truck, a mid-size truck or a full-size truck? A compact pickup truck might be right for you if saving money on gas is important. Compact trucks usually get better gas millage than larger sizes.

Do you need to be able to tow equipment or a boat? With a compact truck, you will be able to tow about 3,000 pounds. This truck can handle most boat towing tasks. If you have a larger boat, you may want to upgrade to a mid-size truck or a full-size truck.

Will you and a bunch of friends be heading to the lake for a fishing trip every weekend, or do you usually travel alone? It’s important to determine the amount of seating you will need in the cab section. A standard cab offers either one long bench seat or two bucket seats. It does not offer a second row of seating, but there is room for storage behind the seats. An extended cab offers a row of seating behind the front seats. This design offers either jump seats or a bench seat.

Our sales representatives have many years of experience selling used trucks. They are knowledgeable, friendly and will work hard to find you the right vehicle. Visit our website or call the dealership to learn more about what we have to offer.

Tips for Buying Your Teenager a Used Car

When your teenager reaches driving age and wants a car, you will probably have many decisions to make. Not only will you have to compromise with your teen when it comes to what you will pay for and what make and model is acceptable, you will also have to consider which used cars are the safest for him or her to drive. If you’re ready to buy your teen a car, we’re here to help with a few tips that might make the processes easier.

Think Simplicity

While your teenager probably has a make and model already in mind, you may want to make some boundaries clear before you start browsing used cars together. Not only will price be a factor, but it can be expensive to insure teen drivers as well. Their age and inexperience make them a considerable liability to many insurance companies, so choosing a no-frills vehicle may help you save money.

Do Your Homework

While we can help you choose a safe used car for your teen, it might also help if you perform some research on your own before you visit our lot. Take the time to discover which used cars have the best safety ratings, which ones have additional safety equipment that might keep your child safer and which are the least expensive to operate. The more you know before you begin to look at individual cars, the easier it might be to arrive at a decision.

Prepare Your Teen for Test Drives

Even if you will be doing much of the legwork and putting up the cash for your teen’s car, you may still want to prepare him or her for what will be involved with test driving vehicles. Teach them what to look and listen for and help them prepare a list of questions to ask our sales associate for during and after a test drive.

Buying your teenager his or her first used car doesn’t have to be a headache. Compromise, research and careful planning can all ensure a more enjoyable buying experience for you both.

Effective Ways to Lower the Cost of Your Loan

Few things are more exciting than getting a brand new car. That being said, you don’t want to let your excitement blind you to taking steps to reduce your car payment. There are a few strategies we recommend for reducing the overall cost of car loans.

BOOST YOUR CREDIT SCORE

If you’re still a few months away from buying your car, do everything you can to improve your credit score, even if you feel you already have a good score. Every extra point you add helps to minimize you as a risk and maximizes your savings on your loan.

EXTEND THE LENGTH OF YOUR LOAN

You’ll likely have the option of choosing a seven-year car loan. Even if you can pay your car off faster, a longer loan term is a great way to lower your monthly payments. With this fact in mind, know that your longer terms are likely to result in higher interest over the life of your loan. Only you can decide if this sounds like an ideal situation if it means you can easily afford your monthly payment. S

AVE UP A LARGER DOWN PAYMENT

It’s best that you save up as much as possible to cover your initial down payment. The more you save, the less you have to borrow and the lower your monthly payments will be. If this means being saddled with your old wheels for a few extra months, it could very well be worth it in the long run. It’s always best to focus on long-term gains over the short-term sacrifices.

BUY A LESS EXPENSIVE CAR

It’s always best to buy well within your means. While a less expensive car may not be as flashy and luxurious as a top-of-the-line ride, the less expensive car may be better for your future finances. After all, no one wants to spend a majority of their money on a car payment. Do everything you can to lower your car payment as much as possible before signing any documents. A little foresight can save you a lot of money. 

Financing a Used Car With Bad Credit

When you have bad credit, it can be difficult to finance a used car. Everyone needs reliable transportation, but having bad credit oftentimes translates to higher interest rates and car payments. Despite these common obstacles, there are ways to get financed, even if your credit isn’t in the best shape. If you have a low credit score and you are in the market for a used car, here are some things you can do to increase your chances of securing financing.

Make a Large Down Payment

Making a large down payment is a simple, yet effective way to boost your chances of getting approved for financing. It shows financial institutions that you are serious about purchasing a vehicle and that you are capable of saving and managing money. You also present less of a financial risk, since buyers who invest large sums of their own money are less likely to default on loans. Buyers who make a down payment may also gain access to better interest rates.

Rebuild Your Credit

This may seem like an obvious course of action if you have bad credit, but it is the most efficient way to ensure that you get approved for a loan. Paying off overdue bills and establishing a history of responsible credit use can go a long way when it comes to securing financing. Car buyers with lower scores will be subject to higher rates and less favorable payment terms.

Use a Cosigner

Using a cosigner can greatly improve your chances of getting financed. Enlisting the help of a spouse or close family member is the most common practice when it comes to cosigning. It should be noted however, that if you do not make your monthly payments on time, your cosigner will also be held responsible.

Don’t Despair

In the world of used cars, there are practical ways to secure financing with bad credit. We offer customers a variety of financing offers, and we are sure that we can work with you, regardless of your financial situation. Don’t give up just yet; there are many ways to finance a car with less than perfect credit.