So, you wish to buy a car but don’t know where to begin? There are many factors you need to take into account before even looking for a vehicle, such as
Once you consider these issues and have a basic idea of what it is you’re looking for, buying a car becomes a whole lot easier. There are many places to buy a car from:
A car dealer: If you buy from a dealer, you will be protected by law. The law states that a car bought from a dealership must be as described, of satisfactory quality and fit for the purpose which it was bought. If second-hand, the full service history of the car should be available. If a second-hand car has any defects, then these should be made explicit by the dealership.
If you are sold a car at a dealership and the above procedure is not adhered to, then you have the right to return the vehicle and ask for a full refund. However, the dealership may instead offer you a replacement vehicle or to repair the original car you were sold. It is up to you whether you accept any offers the car dealer puts forward.
If you bought the car on finance, things may get a little complicated. The dealership or finance company may dispute your claim, and in these circumstances, you may have to sue the company. This requires a lot of bureaucracy, time and money and it is far better to try and reach a solution with the dealership if you can.
With this in mind, if you do buy from a dealership, look for one that offers a no-quibble exchange policy, is well-established and has a good reputation.
Buying Privately has its advantages – cars are usually cheaper than from a dealership and you may get a bargain. However, you are afforded little protection from the law if you buy privately. If you do buy a car privately, insist on seeing the vehicle at the seller’s home so that if something goes wrong with it, you know where to locate them. If you buy from a car park or motorway service station and anything does goes wrong, it will be impossible to locate the seller.
Buying at Auction is considered the riskiest method of purchasing a vehicle, as you are buying ‘as seen’: auctioneers are lawfully permitted to alter the conditions of a sale. Nevertheless, a bargain can be picked up at auction – if you wish to try your luck, go as a spectator initially so that you get used to the terminology and get to know how an auction works. If you decide to buy at auction, try to take someone with you who knows about cars, if you don’t. Know your bidding limits and do not go any higher, and look for vehicles with a full service history (FSH). As with any organisation, make sure the auctioneers are reputable and that they do not deal in stolen cars.