Where to Buy Used Cars: Best Deals When Buying Used Cars

Mar 02, 2021 11:10 AM

During times of financial uncertainty, used cars are feasible alternatives for people who need vehicles that they can utilize whatever practical purpose. Without proper guidance, however, a prospective customer can get overwhelmed by the range of choices available for him in the used car market. Here are four major avenues to explore when looking for secondhand vehicles:

Private/Individual Sellers

Private car sellers advertise via ad listings on the internet, newspapers and more recently on Facebook Marketplace. On the other hand, more pragmatic sellers disseminate information about used cars by word of mouth or by putting ‘FOR SALE’ signs on their vehicles along with their contact numbers. 

Because of minimal/no overhead costs, cars sold by private dealers are usually the cheapest when compared to other sellers in the market. Because there are no showrooms to maintain or staff to pay, these private sellers can lower costs to more reasonable levels. Furthermore, the sheer number of vehicles in the market serves as a control mechanism against overpricing of used cars. 

That privately-sold used cars are cheaper is not always true. In certain cases, some private sellers have an inflated sense of the actual market value of their cars. Moreover, transactions are often done on cash bases and there are no warranties and after-sale services once the dealer turns over ownership to the buyer. 

Used Car Dealers and Lots

A prospective buyer can also opt for used car dealers and lots. Used cars are put on display and the owner pays a premium to the dealer for every car sold, which the latter adds on to the actual cost of the car. 

On the plus side, used car dealerships offer a certain level of assurance about the overall condition of the cars they sell when compared to individual sellers. More importantly, some dealers offer affordable/flexible financing schemes as well as limited warranties and after sales services for purchased cars. 

Banks or Repossessed Vehicle Lots

Another option for used car buyers are the repossessed vehicles being held in the stockyards of banks or other car financing firms. Buying repossessed cars is, however, a more complicated process since these are oftentimes sold in batches and through a bidding process. 

For these types of dealers, getting the car of your dreams for good money entails an element of luck. Oftentimes, the bidding process drives up the prices to unreasonable levels. In cases like these, you are better off buying used cars from the two options presented above. 

Certified Pre-Owned

Finally, used cars can be purchased from the dealerships themselves through various certified pre-owned (CPO) programs. Originally available only for luxury brands such as Audi, Mercedes Benz and BMW, CPO dealerships have been adopted by mass-market automakers like Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) which recently launched its Toyota's Certified Used Vehicle (TCUV) program 

On the downside, CPO cars are most likely the most expensive of the bunch. Prospective car buyers can, however, be consoled by the fact that these vehicles are in best condition since they are thoroughly inspected and maintained prior to sale. 

Better yet, authorized car dealerships offer extended warranties and flexible payment schemes, making them very good options if the buyer can afford payment schemes that they offer. 

Given the options above, a potential buyer can choose how to get for himself a vehicle according to his needs and his financial capabilities. A caveat to leave potential used car buyers is- buy a car that will serve its purpose, but without straining your financial limits. At the end of the day, the basic needs of the household outweigh the need for a car or some other type of transport.