What's The Difference Between A Good Used Car And A Great Used Car?

28 October 2021
 Categories: , Blog

Everyone wants the best vehicle they can afford, whether they're buying new or used. Getting the best used car for your money might seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't need to be. Starting with a reputable dealer will ensure that you're getting into a good and reliable car, but these three factors will elevate your used purchase from good to great.

1. Maintenance History

Where someone came from can often tell you a lot about where they're going, and the same is true when it comes to used vehicles. When you're buying a new car, you want to understand as much as you can about its previous owners and their maintenance habits. This information should include routine services, such as oil changes and unplanned repairs.

In some cases, you may be able to learn a bit about a car's maintenance history from a VIN check, especially if the previous owner followed a routine dealership service schedule. However, detailed service logs and receipts are an even better option to learn about a car's history. Simply seeing that the previous owner kept detailed logs is often enough to prove that they maintained the vehicle.

2. Number of Owners

It's easy to focus on age and mileage when buying used, but there's often a more critical characteristic: the number of previous owners. Each owner is a variable that's outside of your control, and a large number of owners can mean that a vehicle has a spotty or inconsistent maintenance history. Many short-term owners can also point to a car that may have unresolved issues.

There's no magic number of how many previous owners is too many, but you should at least consider this factor. When all else is equal, a car with few owners (or only a single previous owner) is often a better long-term bet than one with a revolving door history.

3. Reliability

While you'd never want to choose an unreliable vehicle, choosing a reliable model is especially important when selecting a used car. Since you're buying a car without a manufacturer warranty, you should focus on brands known to have few long-term problems. Spend some time reading long-term professional reviews as well as owner reviews to find dependable, trouble-free options.

Driving a car off the lot should be an exciting experience, and these tips can help provide you with the peace of mind you need to know that you made the right choice on a used vehicle.