Need a reliable and safe car for your teenager but don’t want to break the bank? Thankfully, you have options in the used car world. Now, I know what you’re thinking: a used car? But, newer cars have the best of the best safety features, and are much less likely to break down. While that’s a relatively true (and logical) assumption, it’s not something you should live by. Just because someone says “used car” doesn’t mean the picture of an old and beaten down rust bucket should come to mind.
Here are three tips for finding a reliable used car:
First, buy a newer used model if you want to save some money. If you buy from 2012 and up, you’ll have plenty of advanced safety features to keep your son or daughter safe. Plus, it’s still new enough that you won’t have to worry about reliability. Still worried about reliability? Don’t be afraid to spend the money on a certified pre-owned vehicle if you can because it will give you the peace-of-mind you’re looking for. Finally, don’t buy any vehicle until you thoroughly check the history of it.
Buy a Newer Used Model
If you shop for used cars that are from model year 2012 or newer, then you certainly have nothing to worry about when it comes to safety. Unless you unwittingly buy a vehicle with poor safety scores, so make sure you research different models first.
Why is 2012 the key year? Simply because in 2012 all vehicles were required to have electronic stability control. While this feature is readily available on used cars older than the 2012 model year, you could end up buying one without it.
Plus, buying a used car from 2012-2016 also ensures that it’s not going to have an extraordinary amount of wear and tear, which is a big benefit to you, the buyer. More importantly though, it ensures you’re getting a vehicle that was designed with modern safety standards set in place. As well as a more refined engineering process than a vehicle from 1993.
Spend the Money on a Certified Pre-Owned Vehicle
If you’re still worried or skeptical about used car reliability, then spending the extra money on a certified-pre owned vehicle will be worth it.
CPO vehicles have been rigorously inspected for problems, and have warranties slapped on them to ensure that if anything breaks, you’re covered. Along with this guarantee of reliability, you’ll also experience greater peace-of-mind thanks to what the CPO program entails, which includes a lot more than just a comprehensive warranty. It differs from automaker to automaker, but many (if not all) of them include 24/7 roadside assistance for a certain time. So if the car does break down during your teenager’s long commute to work or school, you don’t have to worry about leaving the car on the side of the road and rescuing your son or daughter.
Thoroughly Check the History of the Vehicle
Regardless of which type of vehicle you buy, make sure to check the history. Unfortunately, some dealerships are still out to make a quick buck. Even if that means selling you a lemon, or a used car that’s been in an accident and experienced severe damage, but just had that damage covered up on the outside.
Through a combination of inspecting the vehicle yourself when you’re at the dealership, along with looking into the vehicle’s history, you’ll not only save yourself all sorts of headaches in the long-run, but also ensure you’re buying a safe and reliable car for your teenager.
Take these three tips into consideration, and pick either non-CPO or CPO depending on what works for you. More importantly, understand that just because a vehicle is used doesn’t mean it’s worn-down and on the verge of breaking.