7 Benefits of Used Cars

If you’re looking for a new car, you might be tempted by the latest model vehicles with all the bells and whistles and an attractive financing plan. But is buying new really the smartest idea? After all, the used car market is bursting with opportunities to get behind the wheel of a quality vehicle for less. Here are the top seven benefits of opting for a second-hand car instead of overpaying for a new one.

Upfront Savings

The single biggest reason used cars are so popular is because they can save you tons of money. After all, unlike real estate, which tends to grow in value, cars lose value over time. In fact, a new car depreciates the moment it drives off the lot. By the end of the first year, that new car is worth 20 per cent less than when you bought it. The depreciation rate falls to about 10 per cent each year after that.

This means you can expect to save 20 per cent or more compared to the newest model simply by choosing a car that’s at least one or two years old. Such substantial savings should make buying a second-hand car the obvious choice.

Lower Taxes and Registration Fees

Taxes are always higher on new, more expensive cars. This only adds to the upfront price. Then, don’t forget the annual registration fee. The amount you owe depends on where you live and what car you drive, with newer, higher-value vehicles costing more. You could save thousands of pounds over the life of your vehicle simply by purchasing a used car with lower registration fees.

More Affordable Repairs

It often costs less to fix a used car because the parts are typically more accessible. Depending on the make and model, buying used parts might even be an option, resulting in savings that the mechanic can pass on to you.

Cheaper Insurance Premiums

It stands to reason that driving a new car with the latest safety features would save you money on insurance. However, newer cars are more expensive to repair, as highlighted above. Insurance companies recognise this, so they charge more to insure new vehicles against collisions, damage and theft.

Also, consider that the depreciation rate of new cars often outpaces monthly loan payments. As a result, the car may be worth less than the driver owes on it, a predicament known as negative equity. If you get into an accident under these conditions, your insurance will only compensate you for the value of the vehicle, minus your deductible, leaving you to pay the difference. Gap insurance helps prevent you from owing thousands, but your monthly premiums will go up as a result. This scenario is much less likely when you buy a used car because the bulk of the depreciation has already occurred.

No Waiting Period

If you’re interested in checking out a brand new, high-demand vehicle, you might have trouble finding a dealer with that model in stock. Even if you do, you might not get to drive the car home right away if it’s one of the only models on the lot. Otherwise, the dealer couldn’t let other potential customers test drive it. That’s why a waiting period is often required.

On the other hand, buying a used car is a quick, straightforward transaction. In most cases, you can drive the car home on the same day and begin using it immediately.

Continued Warranty Coverage

If a used car is new enough, it may still be covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Other times, the dealer may provide a new warranty for your peace of mind. You may even have the option to buy an extended warranty above and beyond what’s offered for free.

Environmental Benefits

A significant portion of a car’s carbon dioxide output occurs during manufacturing and initial shipping. Thus, buying a used car from a local dealer eliminates the front-end pollution associated with your purchase.

Then, consider that if everyone replaced their cars every six years with brand new ones, perfectly good vehicles would simply pile up in the landfill. In this way, buying a used car and extending its lifespan is an environmentally responsible choice.

Frequently Asked Questions About Buying a Used Car

Should I test drive a used car before buying it?

Absolutely. This is one of the most important ways to analyse a used car for quality. You should be able to trust the dealer to disclose any underlying issues or past accidents, but nothing can replace trying out the car for yourself. In addition to conducting a test drive, look up the vehicle identification number (VIN) for a glimpse into the car’s history. It also pays to have a mechanic give the car a once-over before finalising the sale.

How does used car financing work?

The fastest, easiest way to finance a used car is to work with the dealer’s finance team. Even if you’ve had trouble getting approved for auto loans in the past, your dealer may still be able to help you find an affordable car finance deal.

How do I find a reputable used car dealer?

It’s usually best to begin your search locally. That way, you can see used cars in person and schedule a convenient test drive.

If you’re in Taunton or Somerset, visit Westpark Direct! We are a locally owned dealer with over 100 used cars for sale at any given time. Because we get our cars direct and sell with a small profit margin, we’re able to set our prices lower than the competition. We also offer industry-leading warranties for your peace of mind.

There’s no better place to find high-quality, affordable vehicles than Westpark Direct. Feel free to browse our inventory of used cars in Taunton and Somerset or contact us on 01823 795 437 for more information.