What are the pros and cons of buying a used car?

What are the pros and cons of buying a used car?

Whether you’re an eager P-plater or your growing family needs a vehicle upgrade, buying a car is an exciting time. 

But like with any big purchase, you’ll need to answer some key questions before you go shopping.

Before you sign on the dotted line at the car dealership, make sure you’ve weighed up the pros and cons of buying new or used. 

Pros of used cars: 

  1. They’re cheaper 
    Shiny, brand new cars usually come with a big price tag. If saving money is a factor in your decision making, you can save thousands on a used car. This is by far the main benefit of buying used. 
  2. Can transfer the original warranty 
    If you’re looking at cars ten years or older, this will not apply to you. However, in today’s market, a lot of new cars come with a five-year manufacturer’s warranty. 
    If you’re looking at a three-year-old used car that still has its original warranty, you can transfer this into your name, and protect yourself in case of unexpected breakdowns. 
  3. Dealerships check and repair them 
    Buying a lemon is a huge concern when it comes to used cars. 

Unless you’re shopping at Dodgy Bros. Car Dealership, reputable used car dealers would have checked and performed necessary repairs or maintenance to the car when it originally came in. 

Check that this has occurred before driving away, as this will give you a sense of security and peace of mind. 

Cons of used cars: 

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  1. Will break down sooner 
    If you’re buying a used car, there are simply no guarantees that the car is going to run well for the next five, ten or twenty years. You can never know how the previous owner drove the car, and whether they handed it in because it became a problem. 
    Consider having a trusted mechanic look over a used car before purchasing. 
  2. Repairs will cost you 
    If staying in budget was a key factor to your decision, the savings you made buying used could quickly go towards continued repairs and maintenance. These are things you will need to perform sooner than if you had purchased new, including new tyres, new brakes, transmission flushes etc. 
  3. Less choice on colours or features 
    Realistically, when shopping around for used cars what you see is what you get. Used cars give you less choice or customisable options than are given to new car buyers. If your heart is set on a specific feature, you may be better off buying new.

Pros

  • They’re cheaper
  • Can transfer the original warranty
  • Dealerships check & repair them

Cons

  • Will break down sooner
  • Repairs will cost you
  • Less choice on colours and features

What else to consider about used cars:

Buying a car is a highly personal decision, and there are several factors that need to be considered before deciding. However, when it comes to new vs. used car debate – don’t rule out a three to four-year-old used car. 

If this is something you or your family can afford, you will be able to take advantage of a discounted price, while knowing that the car will be new enough that you (hopefully) won’t be driving away with a lemon. Further, if the car still has its original warranty, you’ll be able to transfer this to yourself and enjoy added peace of mind.

Compare Used Car Loans Today 

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What is a car loan?

A car loan, also known as vehicle finance, is money that a consumer borrows with the express purpose of buying a vehicle, such as a car, motorbike, van, truck or campervan. Car loans can be used for both new and used vehicles.

How much is your car worth?

If you already own a car, you could potentially bring down the cost by selling your car in the process. Before that happens, though, you’ll need to find out how much your car is worth.

One of the first places to find this value is to research the value of your current car, giving you an idea of roughly how much it’s worth in its peak condition.

There are plenty of websites that offer a free online valuation, allowing you to enter your car’s make, model, year, badge and description, with results listing a price guide based on both selling your car privately and through a dealership.

Of course, dealerships will try to profit on your trade-in by buying it for less than they can sell it, making it highly unlikely that you’ll get the same price selling a car to a dealer as you would selling a car privately.

However, private car sales can be costly and can take months to sell, making car trading more convenient with a guaranteed return, even if you may not be able to realise the total value of your car’s worth.

Remember that everything is negotiable. If the dealership is offering you less for your trade than you wanted, try to negotiate elsewhere to gain that money back. Start by negotiating on the price of the trade and then ask them if they can give you a further discount on your new car.

What is CTP insurance?

CTP insurance, also known as compulsory third-party insurance or a green slip, is compulsory if you want to register a vehicle in Australia. If you’re responsible for a car accident, your CTP insurance will be used to pay any compensation due to anyone who might be injured or killed. However, CTP insurance doesn’t cover you for vehicle damage or theft.

What is a chattel mortgage fee?

A chattel mortgage fee is an amount you’ll pay the lender to procure the funds for a chattel mortgage.

You can use a chattel mortgage to finance vehicles used for your business at least 50 per cent of the time. It’s similar to a secured vehicle loan. The lender will give you the funds required to purchase the vehicle whilst you retain the ownership. The finance company then holds a mortgage on the vehicle, using the car as the security, until you repay the loan amount. At the end of the loan term or once you’ve paid it off, the lender will release the mortgage. Alternatively, you can opt to trade-in or refinance the residual value.

What is proof of income?

Before giving you a car loan, lenders will ask for proof of income – documentary evidence that you earn as much as you claim you earn. Lenders will typically want some combination of tax returns, pay slips and bank statements. The reason lenders want proof of income is because they want to be sure you have the means to repay the car loan.

What is a dealership?

A dealership is a car yard or a place where cars are sold.

How to apply for pre-approval of a car loan from RACV?

If you’re planning to apply for a car loan with RACV, the best way to start is by having a clear picture of your requirements. By getting pre-approval on your car loan, you’ll be able to go shopping for your new car with a definite budget that will help you narrow your search. Once you’ve decided to buy a car with the help of a loan, you may have even identified the type of car you would like to purchase, you can seek pre-approval on a car loan from RACV. 

You can apply for pre-approval by filling out a form online and uploading the relevant documentation regarding your identification, income, debt and credit history. Once you submit your application, RACV will review and verify the documents. If you meet their eligibility criteria, you will get pre-approval for the amount they are willing to lend to you. With this pre-approval, you can go car shopping with the confidence of knowing what you can afford.

How do I get car loan approval from Bankwest?

Bankwest offers loans for cars that are less than seven years old or have a minimum value of $10,000. Loan terms are between three and seven years  at a fixed interest rate, with the option to make extra payments without any extra charges.

To apply for Bankwest car loan pre-approval, you’ll need proof of your identity and income. You’ll also need other documentation, such as insurance certificates and registration papers. 

Once you receive conditional approval and have selected your car, you may have to provide supporting documents to proceed to the next stage.

How much is my car worth?

If you own a car, it may be something that can help you bring down the cost of your next vehicle purchase through its sale. However, before you can do that you’ll want to find out how much your car is worth.

Your car’s worth can depend upon various aspects, including:

  • Age
  • Condition
  • Model and make

A great starting place for aspects of this includes websites that offer online valuations, allowing you to enter your car’s make, model, year, badge and description, with the listed results displaying a price guide based on both selling your car privately and through a dealership.

Both have pros and cons, as cars can be very profitable, something that will no doubt impact any chance you have to make the most of your car’s value upon sale. Dealerships will try to profit on your trade-in by buying it for less than they can sell it for, so you shouldn’t expect the same price selling a car to a dealer that you would necessarily get selling a car privately.

How to get pre-approved for a credit union car loan?

Getting pre-approval for a credit union car loan can make the process and paperwork required to buy a car more streamlined and less stressful. You can apply for pre-approval for a credit union car loan, online or contact your credit union. You’ll be asked to provide relevant documentation regarding your income. After you submit your application, your credit union will review and evaluate it along with the documents you submitted. If you meet the eligibility criteria, your loan will be pre-approved for a specific amount.

With pre-approval for a credit union car loan in hand, you can negotiate your new car’s price with peace of mind you have the funds.

Can I buy a car as a student?

Buying a car is a huge financial decision, and shy of marriage and purchasing a house (or perhaps around the world travels), it may be the biggest financial decision you make. But if you’re looking at your empty pockets, don’t despair! Your dream of owning your own car could become a reality, if you look for and compare the right car loans for your circumstances.

What is vehicle finance?

Vehicle finance, also known as a car loan, is money that a consumer borrows with the express purpose of buying a vehicle, such as a car, motorbike, van, truck or campervan. Vehicle finance can be used for both new and used vehicles.

How much can I get towards a new car as a single parent?

It really depends on your financial circumstances as to how much a lender will grant you towards a new car as a single parent. With most lenders, the smaller the loan you apply for, the higher your chances are of approval, so getting a cheaper car or adding some savings of your own, may be a valid option if you are struggling for approval on a car loan.

How much can I get towards a new car as a single parent?

It really depends on your financial circumstances as to how much a lender will grant you towards a new car as a single parent. With most lenders, the smaller the loan you apply for, the higher your chances are of approval, so getting a cheaper car or adding some savings of your own, may be a valid option if you are struggling for approval on a car loan.