What should I do before buying a used car at the dealership?

A car is one of the most important purchases you will ever make. Like a house, it’s a valuable asset that you want to count on for many years to come.

It is therefore advisable to take into account all the details that will be communicated to you before you buy. On the other hand, if you don’t do your homework, if you’re looking for short-term savings or if you neglect your duty of care, buying a used car could become unnecessarily expensive.

The problem with the preliminary search for the “new” used car, however, is that you rarely know what you really need to prepare for. Although many online articles provide very detailed information on the basics of buying a used car, customers are still dependent on the dealer. It is therefore advisable to choose a reputable used car dealer so that you also have the security of not falling into legal traps. In the following article, we explain what also argues in favor of contacting a professional used car dealer.

Make sure you get what you paid for

Even if a car is outside the warranty period of a new car or manufacturer’s warranty, any used car purchased from a dealer is subject to a legal warranty. This stipulates that a seller must guarantee the proper functioning of the car for two years from the date of delivery of the used car.

Important: A distinction must be made between warranties and bonds. The guarantee is guaranteed by law. A warranty is offered voluntarily by manufacturers and dealerships. A warranty guarantees that the product is free of defects at the time of (purchase). A warranty ensures the functionality of certain parts.

Private sellers may contractually exclude this warranty. Although there are civil law ways to make private sellers liable, it is not always easy, complex and sometimes expensive. Unfortunately, it happens all the time that inexperienced buyers buy a used car through a classified ad, transfer the money and receive nothing in return.

Therefore, simply going to a reputable used car dealership can protect you.

When buying a vehicle, make sure you are the owner.

Sounds silly, doesn’t it? A little abstract? Of course, if you buy a car, it belongs to you, right? Well, that’s not always the case.

If the person selling you the car is not allowed to sell it, for example because they stole it, you won’t become the owner of the car even if you paid for it. So always make sure you have all the paperwork (vehicle title, sale or transfer documents, repair and shop certificates, inspection reports).

Another point is depreciation. Any asset can be “depreciated”, meaning that it can lose value. Impairment can occur, for example, through changes in demand, technical progress, accidents and repairs, weather-related aspects (rust, hail, etc.). It is important that the vehicle still has an economic value, otherwise you only invest in the material value and, in case of doubt, you pay for the final recycling. In case of doubt, an independent assessment of the value can provide information.

A reputable used car dealer will always be able to show you all the important papers.

If you don’t know what you need, you need someone to give you the right advice

One of the most difficult things about buying a car is knowing what kind of car you really need. This is where an experienced and knowledgeable salesperson comes in. He or she can help you find a car that fits your lifestyle and budget.

If you’ve found what you want, but can’t make the purchase right away, dealers will find ways to make buying used cars easier. For example, many dealers are willing to take your old vehicle in partial exchange to finance a portion of the purchase price of the “new” used car. When buying a used car from an individual, this option is rarely available.

In addition, the question of what the vehicle needs to do is often raised. Not all cars belong in a family. Not all carriers are really suitable for “all” transportation. Experienced dealers advise their customers accordingly and inform you about the performance, condition and quality of the vehicle so that you can make a safe decision.

Furthermore, if you are dealing with a reputable dealer, it is in your best interest not to make a mistake, because …

The reputation of a car dealer is worth more than a few hundred euros

When you buy a used car from a reputable dealership, they don’t just want to sell you a car. They also want to sell you your next car AND they want you to recommend it to your friends and family. But that only happens if the quality and service is right.

And the great advantage for you is that you have a long-term contact person when it comes to “cars” – whether it’s about buying, selling, repairing or warranty.