Purchasing a used car can be more beneficial financially than purchasing a new one. However, it is a decision that requires time and thorough research. This is not only to save on costs but also to avoid the legal issues that may arise from the transaction. If you are planning to buy a used car in New Jersey, there are some Dos which you cannot afford to ignore.
- Find a trustworthy seller
You can purchase a used car in New Jersey from a car dealer, repair shop or an individual. Just as there are many trustworthy dealers, there are also fraudulent ones. Corrupt shops and dealerships may sell you a vehicle that has been written off, stolen or even on the radar of the police for a past accident.
You can read online reviews of dealerships of used cars New Jersey as well as ask for recommendations from friends or acquaintances. Purchasing from a friend, family or a relative is a good option as you have firsthand knowledge of them. Additionally, the price is usually lower with very flexible payment terms.
- Check the Maintenance History
A background check is important irrespective of the seller. It considers two main factors, maintenance history, and criminal records. The individual or dealer should avail the maintenance records of the vehicle for the past years. These records may reveal a recurrent problem with the auto which you are planning to purchase. A car with an inconsistent maintenance may be a ticking time bomb.
- Ensure All Safety Recall Are Fixed
Safety recalls are crucial and can lead to accidents if assumed. You can get the information from the selling party or search it out yourself. Call the National Highway Traffic Safety Authority, NHTSA or enter the VIN on safecar.gov.
In case the car had a recall, ask for evidence that it was fixed. Otherwise, request that they get it fixed. However, do not be surprised if you are asked to foot the bill. Dealers are not required by the Federal laws to fix recalls on used cars.
- Ascertain the Criminal History
The criminal history, if any, of a vehicle, is important. You do not want the men in blue knocking on your door because your car was part of a deadly accident a few weeks before you bought it. The National Insurance Crime Bureau has a free database of some of these records. The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System, NMVTIS, can also give you valuable reports on past damages. NMVTIS report might cost you a small fee.
Lastly, do not forget to take the car to your mechanic for checking before you go road testing. Yeah, it is not good until it is good enough on the road.