Wheels on the Web
7 Tips to Finding a Quality Car Online
Half of us use the Internet to help buy a car, according to
a recent study. The reasons are obvious -- we can research and
compare inventory and pricing all from the comfort of our homes.
Sound good? It can be, but since the market has expanded beyond
our neighborhoods, we may become more vulnerable to potential
your purchases and hard-earned money, you should take the same
common sense approach as with classified ads.
Here are seven tips
to finding a quality used vehicle and avoiding fraud online:
others have to say. Check to
see if the Web site listing offers seller feedback. Read over
information about previous transactions and look for any comments
that may alert you. If the site does not offer feedback, ask the
seller for references. You want to make sure the seller is honest
and will provide a safe, reliable transaction.
the seller. Find out
as much as you can about both the seller and the car you are interested
in. Ask why they are selling the vehicle, how many miles and owners
it has and if it has ever been in an accident. Ask about the condition
of the vehicle and if all of the service records have been kept.
a vehicle history report. Get a detailed
vehicle history report from Carfax.
The report will give you valuable information such as the number
of owners, mileage readings, whether the car has ever been salvaged,
declared a lemon and much more. Compare the information given
to you by the seller to the Carfax Report. Many of the cars listed
at sites like AutoMart.com have free Carfax Reports.
the carís market value. Get online
pricing information from Edmunds
or Kelley Blue Book.
If the price is significantly lower, take extra precautions. Remember,
if the deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
a second opinion. It may cost
around $75 bucks, but it is well worth it to have a certified
mechanic thoroughly inspect the car you are serious about (and
paying a lot of money for). If the car is in a different state,
contact a mechanic in the local area to arrange an inspection.
with caution. Review the
description, payment and shipping details. Make sure you understand
everything you are signing. Find out what actions the seller will
take if a problem occurs and get all promises in writing. Never
disclose personal information such as your social security number,
bank account number or date of birth.
your rights. Contact your
stateís attorney generalís office to find out what protections
you have in case a deal goes bad.
Buying a used car online
has opened up a large market of used cars. As long as you take
the necessary steps to make it a safe and reliable transaction,
there are many great deals to be had. Buying a car is the second
biggest investment you will ever make. Take the time to ensure
that you are getting a quality vehicle for your hard-earned money.
Report any suspicious behavior to the Better