1. The overall condition of the exterior and the interior
Look out or any major dents, broken plastic parts, paint fades rust around and underneath the car. Oxidized and fogged headlamps are unappealing. And cost you dearly to replace it depending on the brand and model of a car. Check all the tires see if they’re worn out and needs replacing. Subtract the value of the number of tires that needs to be replaced to the price of the car.
Everyone knows what a clean interior feels or looks like. One of the unmissable things is the steering wheel. We can judge by the wear on the steering wheel how long the car has been ridden. Look for any spots marks wear tear on the leather or fabric not he seats and also the fabric on the roof of the car. Same as the exterior, look for any broken parts or plastics. Any loose or faded buttons or lever means it has been used to extremes. Compare these conditions to the asking price of the car. It can be considered if the car is coming to you cheaper than the market value. Also look out for any marks that are made on the interior body most of them are acquired while prying out the dashboard or other parts.
Couple of things we often miss while buying a used car is to check the weatherstrip.it is a rubber seal that goes around on all doors. Make sure they’re are not broken or to the point of wear. And the other thing we often miss is to check the spare tyre and its compartment. Make sure the spare tyre is not worn out or as in most cases the spare wheel has way too many patches from previous punctures n is considered a scrap.
When checking the interior of the car one must get in and see if the overall feel of the car makes u feel good
2. The sound of the engine and the odometer.
When checking out a used car engine you should do a cold start every chance you get. Because a cold engine can tell you so much about the car and its engine and its condition. Look for any unnecessary rattles and vibrations. Sometimes an almost empty fuel tank can lead to vibrations so don’t forget to check the fuel gauge.
Now that you started the car the odometer in the tacho gauge should light up and show you how far the car has run. Most often than not these meters are tampered with to show the buyer it has run less and present the car as fresh but it isn’t always so. Check out the pointers in the above to match the cars condition to the odometer. For example if the interior is worn out but the odometer only shows you 15000 for a 5 year old car you can be assured that the seller isn’t telling you the whole of the story. And who wants to do business with dodgy people.
When you are inside the car checking the odometer make sure all the buttons and levers do what they are designed to do. See if the wipers, horn, lights, stereo, touchscreen, steering control buttons, window roll buttons and the rear view mirrors they all work.
You’d probably be going for a test-drive after this step you can check out our video how to test-drive a used car before buying.
3. Car ownership and insurance ownership
Request the owner of the car for the blue book and make sure all the taxes are cleared up to the current year. Take this opportunity to look at the engine number, chassis number, the make and model and also the original color of paint the car came with. Check the number of previous owners and the number of years each owned it.
Don’t forget the insurance papers. In Nepal the law requires minimum of third party insurance to transfer ownership but a full insurance would really be nice.
ALWAYS REMEMBER TO TRANSFER THE INSURANCE IN YOUR NAME. Simply visit the insurance company you’re vehicle is insured to the location near you and request a change of ownership. As easy as it sounds the law requires you to transfer owner ship of the vehicle within 35 days of transfer.
4. Replacing parts and repairing is it worth the hassle?
When we talk about buying a used car it is only rare that the car would be in mint condition. Consider comparing the cost of parts to change or repair with the value of the car. Some repairs like an engine overhaul and transmission can bite you and your wallet. Try to negotiate with the buyer to let go of the cost of repair or replacing parts to the cost of the car.
One of the hidden aspects of buying and selling old cars is its resale value on the market. In Nepali car market there are only few brands with good resale value. Suzuki, Hyundai and Toyota. If you are going to buy a car with very little resale value. Think again. A car is an asset (yet depreciating one). You are buying an asset with your hard earned money just to realize that car the worth peanuts when you’re in emergency situation. Don’t let that happen to you.
Forewarned is forearmed