How to choose the best used car for you and your budget
What car is best?
What car is most reliable?
Which car should I buy?
We see these questions frequently, usually from first-time buyers who have no experience in buying cars. They want to know which cars they should be considering, and which they should be avoiding, and why.
Of course, as might be expected, there is no single answer because different buyers have different needs and tastes, and there are many different cars that might work for them. However, we’ll try to provide some important suggestions that will make the decision much easier and less stressful.
Continue reading What is a good used car?
Can I Buy a New Car If I Still Owe Money On My Old Car?
This is a very common situation in which car buyers often find themselves.
The situation is that you want/need a new car but still have an outstanding loan on the car you intend to trade. And you know (or suspect) that the old car is not worth the amount you still owe.
What to do?
In the case where you find your old car is actually worth more than your current loan balance, there’s no problem. You trade the car, the dealer pays off your old loan, and the remainder of the trade value is applied as a down payment on your new car.
However, the more common situation is that you still owe more than the old car is worth. You’re “upside down.” The difference in the two values is called negative equity. Your options depend on the amount of the negative equity. The higher the negative equity, the fewer your options.
Continue reading How to Trade a Car with Negative Equity – Explained
What is an OBD code reader and how is it used?
An OBD (On-Board Diagnostic) scanner-reader is a good device to have for your own car or when shopping for a used vehicle.
When the “Check Engine” light comes on in a vehicle, the vehicle’s computer actually stores and saves the data about the problem that caused the light. The data is stored as a unique code that identifies the problem.
A Check Engine light indicates a problem that, if ignored, can cause one of more of the following issues:
- Serious engine damage
- Poor gas mileage
- Vehicle performance problems
- Expensive repair costs
- Emissions inspection failure
Continue reading Best OBD Code Reader-Scanners
Is it possible to buy a car for less than $1000?
Buying a good used car for $200, or $500, or even $1000 is not impossible but it requires extra time looking, checking, and driving to find the jewels among the junkers.
Most cars in this price range will be older and have high mileage, and lots of wear and potential problems.
Age and high mileage, however, is not necessarily a reason not to buy. Many cars with high mileage are in great condition and can last many more miles before finally falling apart.
Many problems with older used cars can be fixed relatively easily and inexpensively. Problems with engines and transmissions are the most expensive to repair. If the only problems are things like hoses, belts, wires, brakes, or electrical equipment, these can be fixed or replaced without great expense.
Continue reading Where can I buy a good cheap car for $200, or $500, or $1000?