What are the top rated used cars?
Considering the fact that a typical new car stands to lose 47 percent of its value in the first three years, it stands to reason that buying a pre-owned vehicle is a cost effective way to get updated safety and comfort features at an affordable price. So which used cars are top rated? To get the answer to that question, it is recommended that one go online and research several different makes and models. Once the facts of the car are known, enter your ZIP code to compare car insurance for FREE!
What Makes a Top Rated Used Car?
The most important factors to keep in mind when selecting a second hand car include reliability, safety, value and availability. Availability is important because the more vehicles of a specific model available in the market, the greater the room for negotiating price. The more limited the availability, the fewer the chances of negotiating a price decrease and one will most probably have to pay whatever is demanded.
Another point to keep in mind is that the vehicle should not be more than seven years old and not newer than two years. This is due to the fact that vehicles less than two years old will not yet have fully depreciated to the point that makes the two or three year old cars a good value. After the first three years, depreciation tapers off. Vehicles older than seven years are most likely to have too many miles on them, making them more prone to replacements of parts and frequent visits to the repair shop. If you’re satisfied with the car you have chosen, just enter your ZIP code so that car insurance quotes can be compared.
Vehicles to Avoid
Just like there are positive points to consider when in the market for a pre-owned vehicle, there are also some negative points, and if a vehicle has them they should be avoided altogether.
- All former rental cars, fleet cars, taxis or police cars should be avoided as they most probably have been driven for all they are worth. Even if these cars have been refurbished, they are best avoided.
- Cars that have been in a major accident or salvaged are not a good idea, especially if one plans to resell them after a couple of years. Not many people want to buy a car that has been in an accident, even if it gives no trouble.
- Vehicles that are too new should be checked out thoroughly as they may be lemons or they might have been in an accident and just repaired cosmetically.
- Older vehicles that have mileage too low to be believable could have had the speedometer tampered with.
- Vehicles that have been discontinued should be avoided as spare parts will be hard to come by.
- A VIN search should be carried out by the DMV to ensure that the vehicle is not stolen.
Buying a vehicle online is one of the best methods. Even if one does not end up purchasing a vehicle online, it is useful to visit different websites as it can help one to decide which cars will be most suitable and what they are selling for in a given area. Once the research is done and you are happy with the car you have chosen, just enter your ZIP and compare car insurance quotes.
Even though private auto sales usually have the lowest prices, one has to remember that there will be only the seller’s word and the vehicle will be in “as-is” condition. Buying from a private party requires greater caution.
Test driving the vehicle and having it checked out by an independent trusted mechanic becomes compulsory. When requesting information over the phone, one should make sure to ask the following important questions.
- Ask if the seller is the original owner and what the mileage on the vehicle is. The average is 12,000 to 15,000 miles a year.
- Is the car still under warranty and are there service records available? If the vehicle has been through too many hands and there are no proper records, then it is not a good choice.
- Find out if the registration is out of state.
- Has the vehicle ever been involved in an accident and is there any repair work that it requires?
Once you finally have your dream car, you can enter your ZIP and compare quotes for car insurance.
Things to Look Out For in an Inspection
While it is not too difficult to find a vehicle in one’s price range when searching the second hand car market, it is a good idea to double check the price against the listed KellyBlue Book price. Whether buying from a dealer or a private seller, carry out a visual inspection in daylight. Make certain that all paint colors match and there are no awkward looking parts, as these could indicate an accident.
Carry out the penny test to judge the tire wear. Insert a penny in the groove of the tire treads with the Lincoln turned upside down. If the top of the Lincoln can be seen, the tires will have to be changed. Carry out a light check by turning the key to the first position and ensuring that all warning lights turn on. Next, fully start the car and make sure the warning lights turn off. Finally, test-drive the car looking out for any abnormal sounds, acceleration issues and breaking.
Getting a good deal on a second hand car is only possible when one knows what they are doing. The first step towards achieving this is to be informed about the existing market. This can only be done by searching the various websites that not only sell second hand cars but provide a wealth of information. So go ahead and take the first step towards a great deal. Once you have the great deal, enter your ZIP code to compare quotes of different car insurance providers.