THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT BUYING A CAR AND IT’S VALUE

Looking to purchase a car? 

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One of your most important thoughts when deciding on the particular vehicle that you are going to buy is the value of the car. There’s a lot to think about when taking the plunge on a new set of wheels and because they are so complex  and likely to be one of the more expensive purchases one makes, it’s important to know what to look for when putting a value to the vehicle in question.

Most will start at  the service records as a car might look great at surface value, but if a vehicle hasn’t been serviced as regularly as the manufacturer stipulates it may be  sign that the rest of the car may not have been as well looked after as a buyer might like. 

Services should be conducted at least annually or every 10 000 – 20 000 km depending on the manufacturer.

A full-franchise service history is often first prize, however if the vehicle is a little older, it’s also acceptable for the vehicle to have gone to a reputable workshop other than the dealer. If there are gaps in the service history, a buyer will become hesitant to pay the asking price and might ask questions as to why this is the case.

Vehicle for sale Cape Town Auto Spares

Signs of the vehicle having been in an accident will deter buyers really fast and reduce valuation of the car immediately.Always ask the seller if they know whether the car has been in an accident or not. If it has and they admit it, that’s usually a good sign. If they say that it hasn’t but you can very clearly see that the car has hit a hard object or two, this would suggest a red flag.


Accident damage can range from a skew bumper from a minor bumper bashing to the entire chassis being out of alignment and the car crabbing along as you drive.If the chassis is badly damaged the vehicle might be written off. There’s a lot to consider here, so keep your wits about you and pay close attention to things like uneven treadwear on the tires, pulling to one direction when travelling in a straight line or any untoward noises/rattles when driving. “Note my previous blog on tyres.”

You should always check to see if the license disc is valid and if the car is roadworthy. Not only is this problematic for the vehicle but you may also end up with an account of outstanding licence papers for the previous years when you go to register the car. Again, there are many things that can cause a vehicle to fail a roadworthy test, so perhaps write up a quick checklist to run through when you have the car in front of you.

Check if the car is clean. The cleanliness of a car will say a lot about how it has been looked after. If the interior smells strange, chances are that garage pie wedged under the seat that has now become a prize-winning science experiment is a sign that oil changes and regular maintenance are not at the top of the owner’s agenda.


Always determine if the  vehicle that you are looking is financed. This is probably one of the most important aspects of buying a vehicle, thus the question do you have the papers.Photo copied papers will not suffice, remember the bank has the papers if the vehicle is financed and if the seller has not paid the bank will reposes the vehicle from you if in your possession. If so, the owner will have to settle what is owed to the finance house, so have a frank and open discussion with them about this and come to an agreement as to how this will be negotiated. Do not ever leave anything to chance and always ensure that contracts and agreements are in place and signed.


And finally, while this might seem like a strange bit of advice, seriously listen to what your gut says. While your gut might not be able to check the quality of the oil for you, or make sure that the spark plugs match, it can put you off a deal once you’ve made the purchase and start questioning what you have just spent your money on. 

Remember, there are many, cars out there to choose from. Take your time and do your homework and if you’re unsure of something, ask an expert.


With that don’t forget to comment and let us know of any tips and tricks you may have. 


Till next time……….

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