Pandemic or otherwise, owning a car is a personal milestone in one’s life, which is why, the economic slowdown and financial restraints that came with COVID-19 did not affect the pre-owned vehicles industry. In fact, it had become a primary reason for an upsurge in the interest for budget-friendly options like pre-owned cars. Moreover, with self-awareness on safety measures and given the hygiene concerns, many consumers are leaning towards the idea of owning their own vehicle over public transportation. Did you know that after Unlock 1.0 was implemented, the demand for QuikrCars and Bikes exceeded the average of pre-COVID levels by about 60% in July 2020?
Adding to this, the current pandemic has made everything digital-first than ever before and we’re seeing a lot of first time adopters as consumers are leaning towards digital mediums for a safe shopping experience. The auto industry which is typically more reliant on touch-and-feel factors is now driving interactions online not just by consumers but also the market players. Even ardent offline customers are figuring out their way around apps and online platforms to adopt digital experiences.
If you are looking to invest in a pre-owned car, you are already one step closer to making a wise call given how they are:
- Budget-friendly: On an average, pre-owned cars can be up to 50% lower than new cars cost-wise which makes it a pocket-friendly option.
- Hassle-free: Whether it is insurance premiums or registration fees, the miscellaneous costs will be considerably less compared to that of new cars.
Here are a few tips from QuikrCars that you should keep in mind when buying a used car:
1. Car body and parts inspection: It is the most important step in a check-list as you need to inspect the car for any minor/major damages, dents, and scratches before making the final decision. Get a trusted mechanic to give the car a thorough check if required.
Checks should include the following parameters:
- If all car parts are in working condition
- If the interiors are intact and not ripped in any way
- If the car boot has the spare tyre and tyre-changing kit
- If the boot or the body has any dents or repair marks
2. Check the service and maintenance records: Checking the documents for the last service is a vital step before purchasing a pre-owned car. You should make sure that service history, bills and documentation are in place. Since the authorised service bills have the kms mentioned, it helps one compare the kms with the odometer.
3. Arrange a test drive: This step will help in understanding how the car runs prior to making the purchase.
Checks should include:
- Drive during peak hours
- Drive at maximum speed with the AC at full blast
- Drive at night and for long distances
- Drive on different roads
- Test the brakes for any signs of pulling
4. Documents checklist: Documentation process can seem tedious, but, this step is the most crucial one. Hence, ensure to validate documents, check them thoroughly and if needed, get a second pair of eyes to review them. You should ask for at least three years of the car’s service reports to know if it has gone through any major wear-and-tear and if there has been a history of replacement of car parts. Check for the insurance period, NOC (if financed), RTO tax receipt, etc. At the time of sale, ensure that the insurance is also transferred to your name along with the RC book ‘change of ownership’ entry.
5. Insurance records and transfer: Transfer the seller’s car insurance policy in your name or buy a new policy within 14 days of the date of transfer of the car. Not doing so may lead to your insurance claim being rejected in case of an accident or mishap. Only claims related to third parties will be approved under the deemed insurance policy transfer of the law. Seek expert help if needed, but ensure to do thorough research prior to the purchase.
With Indians consumers positively interested in buying pre-owned cars, there’s no doubt that in the year 2021, personal vehicles will become an end-to-end mobility solution rather than just an aspiration or status symbol. Do keep these tips in mind for the best pre and post-buying experience.