With 2018 figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) highlighting a drop in the UK used car market by 2.1% compared to the previous year, now could be a good time to secure a great deal on a used car.

If you’ve never bought a used car and you have no idea where to start, browse through the below guide from Money4yourMotors to get the best deal on a used car.

Securing a good deal

It makes sense that you will want to get the best deal whether you are buying privately or through a dealership. But how exactly can you ensure that you are getting a good deal? Buying privately means a deal is less likely as the vendor may be set on price – but it is always worth trying.

If you are buying privately, you need to first make sure you are doing a car data check – just to check that you aren’t being scammed. It is very unlikely but doing this will reassure you that the car is exactly as the seller says it is, that it hasn’t been cloned or written off or any other negative factors which may affect a purchase. Ensure the ad gives you every detail you could ever want to know – a lack of information will generally be negative, and you should avoid buying the car.

You need to take it for a test drive and inspect it for any marks or dents that have been left out of the advert. You want to get the best deal for your money, so you don’t want to pay out for something that you aren’t getting. Make sure that you bring any problems up with the vendor before the sale – this may lead to a decrease in price.

If you choose to buy from a dealership there are many ways to ensure you get the best deal. First, you get a degree of protection and backup when buying from a dealership. You will have good sales staff who are willing to help you and get the best deal for you. They may even track down the perfect car for you if you can’t find one on site.

Plenty of car dealerships also offer some incentives when buying from them. It generally doesn’t matter if you are buying outright or using finance – the incentives usually apply to all purchases. If the garage claims to offer free cover from certain road recovery services for a set amount of time, there is no harm in asking if this is included in your purchase. Often, even if it isn’t originally included in your deal, a dealership may be willing to give it to you. It doesn’t hurt to ask!

Always haggle. The staff may say they aren’t able to give something for free or at a discounted rate, but they don’t want to lose the sale of a new car so are usually open to some negotiation. Whether it is free cover, a slight discount on the final price or just a free item such as a floor mat, try and get more for your money.

When it comes to tips for buying a new car, there are another few ways to make sure you come out with a good deal too – try walking away, even if you really want the car. If the staff must chase you for the sale, they are more likely to throw in extras at no extra price or perhaps with a slight discount. They will also try tricks to stop you from haggling – don’t fall for them. A classic technique is to stay silent as negotiations end in the hope that you accept their price – call their bluff by trying to negotiate the price down a little.

What can I expect on the day of delivery and collection?

Now that you have bought your car, you are going to be anxiously waiting for it to arrive or for the time that you must collect it. What can you expect on this day? No matter how much buying advice you read, this is always a tense but exciting time, so you want to make it as easy and stress-free as possible.

It is important you remain calm and collected for delivery or collection day. You should expect to check over the car to ensure it is exactly how it was when you originally agreed to the sale – make sure to examine the bodywork and interior for any damage or fresh paint from when you originally looked at it. Check over your paperwork to ensure everything is correct – the price, the finance agreement if you have opted for this purchase option, that the vehicle listed on the paperwork is the vehicle right in front of you. If you are happy with it, then you can exchange the paperwork and be the fully-fledged owner of your new car.

But what happens if you aren’t happy with your purchase? If there is some damage that you don’t remember seeing? Ask to see the pre-delivery inspection (PDI) forms which should say what was checked and if any work was carried out. If there is a problem with the car, you need to make sure that you reject it straight away as it is a breach of contract if it isn’t exactly what you ordered.

It is so important to check every aspect of the purchase before you leave the dealership or take the keys from the person dropping it off.
About the author

Money4yourMotors.com is the nationwide car buying service that comes to you, offering instant payment and free car collection – it’s a straightforward way to sell your car.