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How to Buy a Used Car in 10 Steps – Everyone Should Know

No matter where you are in the world, buying a used car can be a daunting process. There are a lot of things one should consider before they can invest in a second hand car including pricing, availability, and condition. To make buying pre-owned cars easier, here are 10 easy-to-follow steps that will get you the car you want for the best possible deal.

Find a Budget

The first thing you have to consider when buying a used car is your budget. How much are you willing to spend on a car? Before anything, find a minimum amount that you are willing to invest as well as a maximum limit that you cannot afford to go over. For those who are taking out a loan to buy the car, you should budget your spending accordingly as well. As second-hand cars often require special attention such as maintenance, tires, and repairs, you should keep aside some extra money when making a budget.

Create a List of Cars

As mentioned earlier, the used car market, especially in India, is huge. There are thousands of models added to the lineup every year which makes choosing the right one extremely difficult. Therefore, it is important to do some research and make a list of the best cars you can afford. Whether it’s a hatchback, sedan, or an SUV, make a list of some of the cars you would be interested in.

Compare Prices

Once you have a shortlist of the cars you’re interested in, you need to find their prices. You can find used car valuation tool online for free which will help you find the best prices for the models you want. It is always important to compare the prices with several sources to find the best suitable deal and get an idea of what a used car usually sells for in the city you live in.

Find Local Used Cars

While it is possible to buy a used car online from practically any city in the country, it is always better to look for cars in and around your locality or even in the same city. Whether you’re buying a used car in Nasik or in Delhi, local sellers will always offer better deals. This also gives you the opportunity to inspect the car before buying it and it also lets you negotiate with the seller or dealership in a more personal way. It is better to have physical access to the car you want to purchase so that you can get all the information about it before you make the investment.

Request for a History Report

Before you even think about buying a car, you need to have the vehicle’s history report present. A history report lets you know if the car was in an accident, if the odometer has been reset, or if the car has been owned by multiple people. If you are buying a car online, most dealerships have the history reports uploaded on their websites and it can be accessed for free.

Getting in Touch with the Seller

After examining all the details and going through all the information available, you need to contact the seller of the car or the dealership. If you are approaching the seller directly, you can create a relationship by discussing the car and why the seller wants to sell it. This will also help in gaining more information from the seller. For online or dealership sales, a visit to the outlet can shed some light on the model and what it has to offer. The biggest advantage of contacting the seller is that you can begin to negotiate the price before actually seeing the vehicle.

Take the Car for a Test Drive

When you finally get to see the car, it is vital that you test drive it to know exactly what it offers. Test driving a car lets you know whether getting in and out of the car is easy, whether the seats are comfortable, or whether the steering is adjustable to a convenient driving position for you. It is also advisable to test the car on different terrains to see how it drives on smooth surfaces as well as wet, rocky, or sandy surfaces.

Inspect the Car

Once you are satisfied with the car, you need to carry out an inspection to make sure that everything from the engine to the electric components is in proper working condition. You can also take a professional mechanic for the test drive so that he can find any problems if any. Allow the mechanic to inspect the engine, transmission, suspension, steering, headlights, taillights, air conditioning, and everything else before you can move forward with the purchase.


As mentioned earlier, negotiation is one of the biggest advantages when it comes to buying a used car. Once you set your budget and find a car within that budget, you can always negotiate with the seller to get the best deal possible. Here, it is important to have a maximum amount in your head and you should not go over it, no matter what. Even if the price offered is within your budget, you should always negotiate so that you can save more for repairs, maintenance, or modifications.


When the seller and you come to an agreement on the pricing, it is time to get all the paperwork completed. Everything from the original purchase invoice to the RC transfer should be signed and submitted properly before you can drive home in your new car. Some of the other important documents are the sales tax papers, warranty (if any), and license fees which should be included as well.

After following these 10 steps, you will never face any difficulty in buying a used car again. These steps are not only easy, but they encompass all the minute details that go into the purchase of a second-hand vehicle. So, before you go out and invest in a used car again, give these steps a try and you will be surprised at the results.

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