Buying Used Car from an Individual – Explained

How to buy a car from a private party, not from a dealer

How to buy car from private partyWhen you buy a used from a private party individual instead of a dealer, things are a little different in the buying process. It’s a good idea to take extra caution especially with regards to exchanging money and title.

Since an individual seller can’t arrange financing for you if you need a loan, as a dealer can, you’ll be responsible for getting your own financing at a bank or credit union, or at an online finance source.

What’s different when you buy a car from an individual?

Advantages of private car purchase from an individual

• Possibly better purchase price than dealer retail price

• Individual sellers tend to be more flexible on price and negotiating

• Individual sellers tend to be more agreeable to buyer inspections and test drives

• No sales tax (in some states) on private car sales

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Car Loans and Financing Explained

How and where to get a used-car loan

how to get car financing and loansThere are a number of options available to used-car buyers in need of financing:

Dealer Loan – If you buy your car from a dealer, he will arrange your financing with a bank or loan company that he works with. Dealers don’t provide loans and financing themselves, it’s always done through a bank or finance company — except for “buy-here-pay-here” dealers that we’ll discuss below. See our article, How Does Car Financing Work.

Bank or Credit Union Loan – You can arrange your own auto financing with your own bank, credit union, or an online loan company. If you are buying your car from an individual (“private-party”), this is the way you will get a loan. It’s best to make application to your financing source before you buy so that you’ll know exactly how much money you are able to borrow.

Online Auto Loan – You can also finance your car purchase – from dealer or individual – with a loan from an online auto loan company such as Auto Credit Express.

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How to Negotiate a Car Deal – Explained

Tips for Negotiating a Used Car Purchase

car deal negotiationBuying and negotiating a car deal is one of those things in life that most people don’t look forward to — because it’s often stressful and, at best, unpleasant.

Car buyers know that they should always negotiate and haggle for the best price but nobody (except car dealers) do it every day and it’s not a skill that we all possess or get to practice very often.

Besides, the rules change from time to time.

First, let’s understand what we’re up against when buying a used car, either from a dealer or from an individual seller.

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Should I lease or buy a car?

car leasing guideThis is a question that frequently comes up for those who are thinking of buying a new car.

Since this web site is about used cars, let’s get one answer out of the way immediately;

Leasing only applies to brand new cars, not used cars. There are some exceptions in that there are independent dealers in some large cities who lease used luxury cars.

But, hold on, that’s not the final answer.

Used car leasing

There is one way to lease a used car that most people are not aware of.  It’s called by various names: lease takeover, lease assumption, lease trading, lease swapping, and taking over a lease.

Here’s how it works.

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How to Sell a Used Car – Explained

What is the best and fastest way to sell a car?

how to sell used carIf you are selling a used car you should take the necessary steps that will allow you sell at the highest possible price while avoiding issues with buyers and paperwork.

We take you through the process so that your efforts will be successful and you’ll avoid common problems.

Prepare your car for sale

Used car dealers know that if they clean up their vehicles inside and out, they can sell for higher prices. You can use the same technique when selling your own car.

You may find that you can easily recover the cost of replacing worn tires, for example, and make your car sell faster. You should touch up paint scratches. Repair windshield dings. Pull out small dents. Balance the tires. Get a tune-up and oil change.

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What is a good used car?

How to choose the best used car for you and your budget

how to find best used carWhat 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.

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How to Trade a Car with Negative Equity – Explained

Can I Buy a New Car If I Still Owe Money On My Old Car?

negative equity car loanThis 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.

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Best OBD Code Reader-Scanners

What is an OBD code reader and how is it used?

OBD-II code readerAn 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

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Car Repair Insurance – Do I Need It?

Used Car Warranty. Do I Need It?

car repair insurance - warrantyMost people have auto insurance — from an auto insurance company — to protect them from the cost of accident damage, theft, and liability resulting from at-fault accidents. However the kind of insurance that most people have doesn’t cover mechanical failures, wear-and-tear, electrical failures, or any damages not caused by an accident.

These kinds of problems are typically covered by new-car factory warranties — for a limited time or for a limited number of miles. Most new-car warranties expire in 36 or 48 months, and 36,000 or 48,000 miles. Powertrain warranties which cover certain engine and transmission failures are usually longer.

Why do car manufacturer’s not offer warranties longer than 3 or 4 years? Because that’s when problems are most likely to begin.

People who buy used cars with no remaining factory warranty, or a soon-to-expire factory warranty, should consider a kind of car repair insurance to protect them from the high costs of unexpected repairs. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that your conventional car insurance pays for non-accident related repairs.

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Car Scam – Car Buyer Scam

Don’t get scammed by fake car buyers

Attention car sellers:

car buyer scam tricks sellersA common scam by phony used-car buyers can leave you with you with an empty bank account or PayPal account — or a large credit card balance.

The newest version of this scam: The “buyer” offers to buy your car sight unseen at your full asking price, or more, and wants your bank account number or PayPal email to send you money for your car. They have an excuse for not being able to talk to you any way but by email — no telephone.

Sounds safe enough, but a “problem” develops (so says the scammer) with your bank or PayPal “not releasing the funds”. You are instructed to go to a FAKE PayPal, eBay, or bank web site that looks legitimate but in fact asks you for your account info, including password. If you do it, your account will soon be cleaned out — and you still have your car.

Another version of this scam instructs the innocent buyer to send money via Western Union to a “shipping agent” in a foreign country. The scammer promises to reimburse you the money in the “PayPal” deposit to your account.

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Used Car Guide – Expert Tips and Advice for Smart Buyers