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5 Tips for Purchasing a Used Car in South Burlington VT

Used Car Buying Tips in South Burlington VT

Purchasing a new or used car can be daunting, especially for first-time buyers. You don’t know if you’re getting a good vehicle, one that’ll last you years, or one that’ll die the moment it leaves the lot. For many first-time buyers, especially used vehicle buyers, it’s hard to know what to do to avoid the worst-case scenario.

That said, we at Heritage Toyota want to help you lower your chances of getting a bad used vehicle. To do this we’ve compiled a small list of tips you should employ when you’re out on the market! Continue reading to learn what we recommend!

1. Figure out Your Budget

One of the most important things you can do when shopping for a new or used vehicle is figuring out just what you can afford. The common consensus is that your monthly vehicle payment should never go over 20 percent of your take-home income. That means after taxes and fees. Of course, less is better when it comes to used vehicles and their cost, as you might need to replace tires and other easily worn parts after purchase.

2. Find Highly Rated Used Car Vendors

The next thing on your list should be to find highly rated used car vendors in your area, such as ours, to know you’re getting a good deal based on previous shopper’s experiences. You want to make sure you don’t pick a dealership that has had many issues in the past, as that could be a sign they don’t fix their used vehicles. Additionally, make sure you create a list of target models you want to investigate or test drive.

3. Contact the Seller

You shouldn’t rush over to the dealership right away, as you aren’t even sure the vehicle is still in stock. It could have been sold and the system just not updated. Also, you might be able to get access to the vehicle identification number (VIN) from the seller or dealership over the phone, which leads us to our fourth tip.

2018 Toyota Corolla side view of seats with women in.

Changing tires on a vehicle

4. Run a Vehicle History Report

Our fourth and arguably most important tip is to check the vehicle history report using the vehicle’s VIN number. This will allow you to see any damages that might have occurred to the vehicle, and what work has been done to it. Running the vehicle through AutoCheck or CARFAX is a good way to know you’re getting reliable information. Things to look for are if it has a salvage title or the odometer has been rolled back.

5. Take it for a Test Drive

Test driving a vehicle you’re interested in can be a good way to see If it’s a good fit for you. It’s also a nice way to check the condition of a vehicle while it’s in action. Some things to watch out for include:

  • Do you smell anything odd?
  • Are there any lights on (check engine, tire pressure, etc) that stand out?
  • Does it handle ok? How do the gas and brake respond?
  • Is the drive comfortable?
  • Can you enter and exit without issue?

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These are just some of the tips we think will benefit you and make your used car buying experience easier! To learn more about purchasing a used vehicle, or to check out our used vehicle inventory, contact us at Heritage Toyota today!