Buying a used car - don't overlook the private seller. I've bought two used cars, with 60,000 miles on them, paid $200 each time and drove them another 80,000 miles with no major repairs. They were not pretty cars, but very dependable transportation.
By Betty G.
Don't even consider buying a used car until you find out how much your current car is valued. You can do this by going to the Kelly Blue Book website and it's free to find out. So if you decide to trade in your car you know what it's worth and you'll be able to find out how much you should really be paying for your new car as well. Talk to the dealer and have them give you all the information on the car IN WRITING, so you can check it out online and they can't jack up the price on you later.
I've had success in the past buying cars from individuals. I found it useful to observe how the person conducted him or herself, and how they maintained their home. It gives you some insight into the care the car has had. Another thing to look for is whether they offer you their records on maintenance and oil changes, etc. The cars I bought were older and relatively inexpensive but I was able to get a sense they'd been well cared for, and they served me well.
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