The next thing to do is get an idea of maintenance costs on any car you're considering. Proper maintenance is especially important on a used car since it may not have a warranty to protect it if anything breaks down. People buy used vehicles as a way to save money but often overlook the cost of maintenance, which might end up pushing them beyond the limits of their budget. The car's owner's manual, which is often available online, will tell you what you need to know about maintenance services and intervals. A phone call to a dealership service department or a trusted independent repair shop will get you pricing information. You also can check resources such as RepairPal.
There are a number of places to purchase a used auto. Here's a quick rundown: CarMax offers no-haggle pricing and cars that are in good condition, but its prices are a bit higher than you'll find elsewhere. Private-party sellers have lower prices and can be negotiated with more easily, but the burden is on the buyer to get the car inspected. Major dealerships sell certified pre-owned cars that are in excellent condition and backed by factory warranties. This option will appeal to buyers who want to minimize the risks of buying used and are willing to pay extra for it. Independent used-car lots are another alternative but can vary wildly on price and the condition level of their cars.
It's not well known, but you can often arrange to have the vehicle delivered to your home or workplace. This option allows you to sign the paperwork in a relaxed environment, skip the trip to the finance and insurance office, and avoid many car-buying pitfalls. Wherever you finalize the deal, call your insurance company and let your agent or customer service representative know that you'll need coverage for your new ride.
Pros: Perhaps the most obvious pro of buying a new car is that you are the first owner. Buying new ensures you'll get the most possible life out of the car since it has almost no miles on it when you start driving it. Even the cleanest used cars can't be in as good of condition as a new car. If you're planning on keeping the car long-term, you can get a lot of years and a lot of miles out of your new car.New cars have excellent warranties that can give you peace of mind. Having your maintenance covered for a certain period ensures that you won't have to worry about maintenance for a while and by the time your warranty expires, you might want to trade-in for another car anyway.