Buying a second-hand car?What you need to knowBuying a second-hand car is a great option for many motorists. Brand new vehicles can be incrediblyexpensive and will lose a lot of their value even as you drive away from the dealership. So asecond-hand vehicle can be much better for the bank balance and is not necessarily any lessreliable or enjoyable to drive. But there are several things you must be aware of when shopping forsecond-hand vehicles, so read on for the top tips from www.autovip.co.uk.Set your budgetBefore you begin you must be honest about what you can aﬀord. If youhave a current vehicle to sell this could provide much of the cash. Oryou might consider a loan or overdraft.Don’t forget the additional and ongoing costs as well – insurance, tax,MOT and fuel can be big bills.Consider the optionsIt will make the search much easier if you have a good idea of whatmakes and models will be most suited to your needs. Think about howmany passengers you will regularly have in the car, how much bootspace you will need and the fuel and insurance costs. All these factorswill help you decide which cars are best for you. Then you can narrowdown your search by going to see a few of the options.Contacting sellersThere are four main ways you can buy asecond-hand car:Private sellersInternet sitesDealersAuctionsThey all have their pros and cons buthowever you ﬁnd your new car be sure tospeak to the seller and arrange a viewing.Ask question about the car’s past andcondition, why they are selling and howmuch it costs to run.Inspecting a carIt is vital that you go to view the car and giveit an inspection. This should be done indaylight and when the weather is dry – raincan hide scratches and dents in thebodywork.Check the car thoroughly inside and out,looking for things such as scratches andsigns of repair, rust, wear to the seats andthe condition of tyres. Have a look under thebonnet – excess oil or ﬂuids over the enginecan signal a problem. You should also checkthat the Vehicle Identiﬁcation Numbers onthe windscreen, under the bonnet andunder the driver’s seat carpet all match withthe VIN in the logbook.Get behind the wheelYou should take the car on a test drive tocheck that all the features work and that thevehicle runs smoothly.Hit the roads for at least 15 minutes andcarefully assess how the car handles. The carshould be started from cold so you can see ifthere is any smoke or noise when you turnthe key. As you drive, go through all thegears, test the brakes and keep an ear outfor any vibration or noise.You will need to arrange suitable insurancefor test driving cars so speak to yourprovider before getting behind the wheel.HaggleDon’t be afraid to haggle on theprice. If you have done yourresearch properly you will knowwhat similar cars sell for so canavoid paying over the odds.Start with a low bid and meet theseller somewhere in between ashe comes down from his askingprice. Stay calm and don’t betempted to pay more than you canaﬀord – there are plenty of othercars out there.Doing the dealOnce you have agreed a price youand the seller will need to workout how payment will be made.Private sellers usually expect cashor a cheque, but they will thenwait until this clears beforehanding over the keys. If youleave a deposit be sure to get areceipt.If buying from the internet, at adealership or online you can oftenpay by debit or credit card.Once you have the keys you needto complete the new keeper partsin the logbook and send it to theDVLA. Arrange insurance coverbefore you drive away.