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Which Is The Best Used Car For You?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Which Is The Best Used Car For You?

Levi Quinn
March 26, 2011

Levi Quinn

No matter what used car you decide to purchase you want to make sure it fits in within your lifestyle. You'll want to feel comfortable in the car and feel like you can accomplish your daily tasks while having reliable transportation. You need to ask yourself some questions before deciding on what car is best for you. How often do you drive your car? How many people do you transport? Do you travel far often? How many hours a day do you spend in your car? For example, if you need to transport a lot of people you'll need a bigger car than a sedan, and quite possibly a SUV could fit your needs. If you travel long distances in your car, you'll want a car with low mileage that's good on conserving gas.

Next, do you want to lease or buy your used car? You'll have to consider this carefully because each option has its own advantages and disadvantages. If interest rates are low it may save you more money to buy the car rather than lease it. However, if you lease you can get a different car every couple of years and may be able to get a used car that would otherwise be out of your price range if you decided to buy. You can also find resources online that will allow you to calculate and compare your monthly loan payment to your monthly lease payment. Consider the cost of the specific car you wish to own. If it's a little pricey you also have the option to research other cars in a similar market.

You want to create your own checklist and although you may not get everything you want in a specific car, you may be able to check more things off that list when you compare cars against each other. You'll be able to compare price, mileage, warranty and various "bells and whistles," so that when you line up certain cars against each other you'll know which car tops the list in each area. Before even stepping foot on a dealership you should research the cars that interest you. You'll want to come into the dealership with background information on the cars that you wish to test drive or inspect.

After visiting a dealership and test driving a car you need to allow yourself time to think. Don't get wrapped into the sales pitch that is given to you or the "one day only" deal. Car dealerships are always in need of business and will do almost anything to get you to come back. You need to step away from the dealership and weigh your options. It's also helpful to find out the specific car's vehicle identification number, or VIN number. This way you can trace the car's history and find out about any former accidents or previous issues with the car. Usually the dealership will provide you with a background report on the car and if they don't that's also something to take into consideration.

When figuring out the perfect used car it's most important to remember the car is ultimately for you. It's always good to get other people's opinions on what they think of their own cars, but don't let them influence your checklist or top priorities for the car that best fits you.

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