In 2021, Aussies spent an average of A$ 10,811 on pre-owned cars as compared to A$ 40,128 on a new car. This means that buying a used car in Australia can save you a lot of money. However, buying a used car in Victoria or anywhere else can be a bit overwhelming.

Around 20% of people buying second-hand cars are left disappointed. Sometimes, a car seems fine at first but after you have bought it, you find out about all the car parts that need to be replaced. While a lot of people want to buy a occupied cars or used car, they are often confused about how to go about it. If you are one of them, we have got you covered. Here’s everything you want to know about buying a second-hand car in Australia.

Where to Buy a Used Car in Australia?

Buying a car is a big decision. And it gets tougher when you decide to buy a used car. A lot of people don’t know where to start. So, let’s help you look for a used car in Victoria or anywhere else in Australia.

There are quite a few options from where you can decide to buy a used car. You can either go to a dealership, buy privately from the previous owner, buy at an auction, or buy online.

Used Car Dealerships

Many online and offline car dealerships in Australia sell used cars. Buying a used car from dealerships can get you a statutory warranty if the car is less than 10 years old or travelled less than 160.000 km.  The warranty will be valid for 3 months or 5000 km.

Moreover, if you decide to buy in Victoria, Queensland or Australian Capital Territory, your pre-owned car will come with a safety certificate, as mandated by the state law. Many dealers would also offer finance options and there’s a wide variety of cars to choose from.

However, the biggest demerit of buying from a dealer is that it can cost you more than other options.

Buying a Used Car in Australia
Used Car Dealership

Buying from a Private Owner

You can also choose to buy a used car directly from the owner. You can look for a private seller online or ask your friends and family. The biggest advantage of buying a used car privately is that it is more affordable than buying from a dealer. Moreover, if you already know the owner, you can find out the history and real condition of the car.

However, on the flip side, your options are extremely limited. And there’s no used car warranty in this case.

Buying a Used Car at an Auction

It is one of the cheapest ways of finding a used car. There’s a wide variety of cars to choose from and many are often in good condition. You can get a guarantee of title. You might also be allowed to get the car independently inspected before the auction.

However, some used cars might not come with warranties. You won’t be allowed to test drive and you might have to pay a deposit instantly. Auctions are a good place to buy a used car in Australia if you have done your homework and you know what you are looking for.

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Things to Consider Before Buying a Used Car in Australia

Now that you know what options are available for you to buy a used car from, it is time to discuss what you need to do before buying the car.

1. What are your Requirements and what’s your Budget?

The first thing you need to know is what are your car requirements. What are you looking for? Do you need a minivan or an SUV? What kind of mileage are you looking for? Do you want a car in extremely good condition or would a slightly worn-down car work? Do you need a car for leisure or work?

And most importantly, what’s your budget? How much can you afford to spend on buying a car? Are you looking for finance options? These are all the questions that you should ask yourself before you start looking for a second-hand car.

2. Research is Important

On average, people spend 22 hours on research before buying a used car. Do your research as thoroughly as possible. Search both online and offline. Evaluate all the options available to you. Do you want to buy online or offline? Would you buy privately or from a dealership? Consider the pros and cons of all the options available to you.

If you are looking online, read the reviews. Seek advice from expert mechanics in Victoria or Sydney or elsewhere. Narrow down your research based on the type, model and make of car you are looking for.

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Things to do while Choosing to Buy a Used Car

Once, you have done all your preliminary research and narrowed down your search to a few worthy candidates, the next round begins.

Get the Car Inspected

Don’t buy a car without thoroughly inspecting it. It’s always better to seek the help of a professional car mechanic in Victoria or elsewhere to get your car inspected. Expert inspection can ensure that you are choosing the right car. You can find an expert car mechanic in a matter of minutes by posting a request on Swezo.

Check out the safety ratings of the shortlisted car. Check out its security features. Ask the potential seller about the age of the car? How much has it been used? Is it under warranty? Find out the car’s fuel consumption and emission rating.  Check if your shortlisted car adheres to all the regulations of your state.

Buying a Used Car in Australia
Get the Car Inspected

Used Car Checklist

Whether you are inspecting the car yourself or hiring an expert to do it for you, here’s a checklist of things you should look for.

  • Verify the car’s ownership: Ask the seller for the car’s current registration certificate. Check out the car’s VIN (vehicle identification number) and match it to the VIN on the registration papers. You can use the car’s VIN, registration number and chassis number to verify its
  • The Exteriors of the car – Thoroughly inspect the car for any dents or paint overspray or misalignments. Check the doors and windows, the headlights, and the tailgate for any sign of damage.
  • The Interior – Just like the exterior, check the interior of the car including the seats, mats, seat belts, steering wheel, brakes, brake pads, etc. Look beneath the seat covers and mats for signs of damage. Check if the seat belts are working. Look under the bonnet. Check how many kilometres the car has travelled. Thoroughly check each aspect. Check the car’s service book to find out if the car has been regularly serviced.
  • Check all the Car fluids: Use a dipstick to ensure that the car isn’t running low on engine oil and other vital car fluids. Check under the engine to make sure there is no oil, coolant, or other fluid leaks.
  • Inspect the Tyres – Properly inspect the car’s tyres for any signs of damage or wear and tear including the spare tyre.
  • Test drive the car: Take the car on a test drive. Check if the engine is running smoothly. Make sure the car runs smoothly after idling or restarting. Switch on and off the lights to make sure they are working perfectly. Notice the colour of the smoke coming out of the exhaust. Check if any weird smell or noise is coming out of the engine after it runs for some time. Make sure the engine isn’t overheating.

Make sure the Price is Right

Ask around before finalizing a deal. Check online. Check with other sellers to make sure you are getting a good deal. However, if the price is unbelievably low, run, this might be a trap!

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What to do After you Buy the Car?

Once the deal is finalized, transfer the registration to your name. Also, get your car insured. If the car isn’t in a good shape, your insurance premiums might be significantly higher. So, ensure that you buy a used car that’s in a good condition.

Bottom Line

With the right resources, buying a used car in Australia isn’t as difficult as it seems. If you know what exactly you are looking for and where to look, the search gets easier. Swezo can help you to find an expert mechanic to inspect your shortlisted car. Get your car properly inspected before making a purchase.

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