Buying a car is a lengthy process that costs a lot of money. Some people don’t live close enough to bus stops to use public transportation. Riding a bike or walking is always an option, not to mention it’s much more eco friendly, but location can make it extremely inconvenient and tiring. Buying a daily commuter is often very necessary, but unfortunately the financial aspect can make it very difficult. Buying a previously salvaged car will save you quite a bit of money, though it can be hard to avoid accidentally ending up with a crappy car. Luckily, there are many good, reliable vehicles that can be purchased for a decently low price, you just have to know what you’re looking for.
There are many websites that will check the accident history of a certain vehicle using its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). If the seller is willing to provide this number, they are probably offering a legitimate vehicle because they aren’t trying to hide anything. The VIN number will check the car’s history of damage reports and maintenance. There are other sites such as CARFAX and Autocheck that will do the same thing using the vehicle’s insurance database as well as the VIN (though that is optional). Information from these types of websites will probably be a little more accurate, though they are known to make mistakes. For example, picture a scenario with a four car accident, but only three of the cars were severely damaged. CARFAX will list the 4th, undamaged vehicle as “previously majorly damaged”, even though no extensive maintenance was required.
Ask the seller for any photos or documents they can provide about the vehicle’s accident history and repairs. If they don’t have any to provide, that’s a reason to be at least a little suspicious. Most car owners are pretty meticulous about any documents relating to their vehicle, and will keep them in the glove box compartment. Be careful, but note that there are some people who are just careless about their documents. Also be wary of the price, too. If a deal seems too good to be true, it most likely is. Listen to their reasoning though, as they may have a story as to why their vehicle is so cheap. However, it’s important to take caution as they may just be lying to scam you.
If you’re buying a previously salvaged car off craigslist, make sure they will allow you to take a look at the car and take it in for inspection. A pre buying inspection is necessary before buying any car, but it’s especially imperative when buying a previously salvaged car. Take the vehicle to a trusted mechanic of your choice. The seller may scam you by taking it to a mechanic of their choice, who will lie about the car for them. An inspection will reveal any mechanical problems. This can lower the overall price, or just turn you off of the sale completely. Buying a previously salvaged car can get you a good car for a great deal, just remember to be careful and know what you’re getting!