Buyer Tips Used Cars

What to Look at When Buying Used Cars Online

By Odet Garcia Updated: 05/16/2020 Posted: 04/01/2020

Car enthusiasts are increasingly choosing online car auction platforms when buying used cars. Especially now during this particular time when we’re facing social distancing because of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Buying used cars online is becoming more common and it may take over in the post-pandemic era. 

buying used cars online

Nonetheless, there are still many car buyers who are in the dark as to how these online purchases work. In this article, we are going to go over the areas you need to focus on when buying used cars online. You can become an expert in choosing the best used cars for you, saving money in the process.

Know Exactly What You Need

You can’t go on and start searching for a car to buy if you don’t know what you need. There are thousands of options in the market, and of course you can find some awesome cars. But if you don’t have a clear knowledge of what you need in a car, you can face issues in the future. For example, a sports car is not for you if you need a spacious car with a trunk fit for luggage.

So, what do you need? Are you a commuter? Or do you just like the thrill of driving fast? These are important questions that need to be answered before initiating your quest of buying a used car online. These are answers that will let you build a list of features that are non-negotiable for the car you’ll purchase. 

Choose an Online Car Auction Site

Well, you are set on buying a used car online. This means that you need an auction platform that will help you access car auction houses and place bids. There are various sites out there that can help you with this. We have mentioned before that these types of auctions are exclusive for dealers. This means that these sites help you use a dealer license to access major car auction houses. 

buying used cars online

Focus your research on looking for a platform that can help you with the process. Check at reviews and review scores. Look into what they have to offer in terms of fees and prices. Most of these sites can get you cars at wholesale prices. This means you can save money in a great car that would cost you much more in a dealership.

Further Reading

  1. 5 Sites you Need to Check Before Buying a Used Car 
  2. Simple Guide to Buying a Motorcycle and Getting an Insurance Quote
  3. Your Guide to Buy Used Cars on an Online Auto Auction Site
  4. Everything You Need to Know about Buying Used Cars 

Organize Your Budget

This is one of the most important steps you need to take before buying used cars online. It is important to have clarity on the total cost of the car you want to purchase. Also, having information about the auction platform you will use, can help you do this step correctly. Having a well-organized budget will help you avoid future problems or surprises with your car.

Keep in mind that car auction platforms charge different fees. You need to ask about these fees in order to add them to your budget. Not only do you have to pay the car’s total purchase price. You also need to pay for auction fees and shipping fees. Knowing this beforehand makes your purchasing process so much easier.

Vehicle History Report

The vehicle’s history report is crucial when it comes to making a decision about a car to buy. We’ll never get tired of mentioning this report in our articles. Because it will seriously save you from a bad car choice. This report will show you basically any information that has to do with the car you want to purchase. From mileage, to previous owner information, and if it was involved in any accident in the past.

There are some sites like Carfax or AutoCheck where you can download the Vehicle History Report for the car you’re interested in. However, there are online auction sites that will also give you the option of downloading limited reports for free.

Car Price and Total Cost

Doing some research about the price of the car you want can help you set your bid correctly. There are some sites you can check to see what the car’s market price is. You can go to Kelly Blue Book or Edmunds and check the value of the car you’re interested in. 

It is also important to check the total cost of the car. This will help you have an idea on how much will repairs cost, how much will you spend on gas, and maintenance. It is key that you add this to your budget. This way you’ll know what will be the best bidding price for you.

Make A Checklist

A great way to organize your car purchases is making sure you have an inspection checklist. This checklist will help you and your auction specialist to pick the right car for you. You’ll need to include all the must-have features you need in a car. Also, include the questions about the car that you need to ask your auction specialist.

Remember that you have no way of inspecting the car when buying used cars online. The auction specialist will tell you everything about the car. So, if you have any questions, make sure to include them in the checklist. This way you won’t face any surprises when you receive your car. 

Buying Used Cars Online

Now you know what you need to look at when buying a car online. We’re sure that keeping these tips in mind will help you purchase the right car for you. Ultimately, going online to buy a car is a great choice to save money on a car that would cost much more in a dealership.