Quick Tips for Buying a Car Online
Buying a car online has not only become one of the most popular ways to get a new or used car, it's also one of most convenient and cost-effective. Even though only one-third of American consumers state that they'd be willing to buy a car online, this number is getting larger by the day as eCommerce becomes more prevalent. It's estimated that around 18 million cars are sold every year through websites like Bay Motors, Carvana.com, and others.
If you're thinking about purchasing a car online, here are a few quick tips to help you through the process:
- There are many tools online that can help you figure out which type of car to purchase if you aren't sure. It's always best to do your research before contacting a seller so that you aren't pressured into buying something that you don't need.
- Used cars can be just as good as new cars -- in some cases, a used car can be an even better purchase if the vehicle is still in good shape. Be sure that you don't cross out the possibility of buying a used car if you haven't decided what car is best for you.
- If you do purchase a used car, however, make sure that the seller is trustworthy and can provide information regarding safety inspections and past ownership. Auto dealers are not always required to provide this information to buyers, but it's a good idea to ask for it; a legitimate dealership will be more than happy to provide thorough documentation of a used car's history report. For extra protection, you can purchase a vehicle history report on your own which eliminates the concern that the seller may be providing an outdated or “doctored” report in an attempt to conceal something.
- Remember that an interstate sale could be your best option; shipping large items like vehicles is a complicated process but it's not impossible! Around 75% of all auto shipping transactions are interstate; it's just as feasible to transport a vehicle across the country as it is to transport a vehicle across a city.
- If you are waiting for the best time to purchase a vehicle, consider auto shipping rates before you make a purchase. Shipping a car during the summer can cost up to $300 more than the cost of shipping in the winter, but you might end up using an enclosed carrier to protect the vehicle from winter weather (and this can cost as much as 60% more than an open carrier). Make sure you know the routes that the auto shipping company will take so that you can choose the best time and the best service.
- Be aware of on-line scams especially if working with a private seller. If the deal seems to good to be true, it probably is. Click here for tips on avoiding on-line car buying scams.