Is it time to find a new truck? If so, you have several decisions to make before you find that perfect option. First and foremost, are you actually going to buy new or do you want to look at used options? While everyone loves the idea of a brand-new vehicle of any kind, there are certain limitations that prevent people from entertaining that idea when it comes to trucks. That is why so many people turn to slightly older and used options before making a final decision.
Simply put, a new truck is expensive. Even when you’re looking at a baseline model of a midsize pickup, you’re looking at several thousands of dollars out of your bank account. Base trims often start around $40,000 and go on up when you look at more expensive trims or additional safety and convenience features. If you plan on sticking with just the baseline model, you have to accept the fact that it will mostly be bare-bones in terms of capabilities and comfort.
A used truck, on the other hand, can be less expensive with more options depending on its age and original value. This helps you save some money or afford something more capable and comfortable than you would with a new option.
If you want to explore the possibilities you have when searching for a new, used truck, there are a few things you should think about before and during the search process.
Know Your Needs Ahead of Time
It is easy to get mixed up in all the different options that are available for new and used trucks. From new technologies and capabilities to specific models that stand out to you, the great thing about pickups is that there are a lot of them for sale. It can be overwhelming at times if you don’t know what options and features are actually important to you.
That is why you should know ahead of time what exactly you need out of a new truck. Whether it is actually new or used, this truck is going to serve the same purpose that may be different than how others would use it. In other words, this truck is going to be your own: make sure you buy one that fits you like a glove.
Take the time to actually list out any needs or desires you have in a new truck. How do you intend to use it? What kind of capability should have? Will it be used for hauling cargo or towing trailers? What kind of size do you need? How big of a bed do you need? How many people do you intend to carry at a time?
The more you have all this laid out, the better. This list will help you filter out any possibilities that don’t quite make the cut when it comes time to examine what is available for sale. A good way to use this list is to keep it with you anytime you’re looking at a used truck for sale. This will serve as a good refresher and keep you on track at the same time.
Things to Look for in a Used Truck
Beyond meeting your list of must-have as much as possible, are used truck needs to be in a certain condition in order to be worthwhile. If it’s too old or too beat up for your needs, it is only going to become a money pit as you attempt to restore and repair it back into working condition. Therefore, you can save a lot of time and headache initially by looking for the right type of used truck.
Do a visual inspection first. How the truck looks on the outside can be indicative of other problems or areas of concern that you should notice before buying it. The truck itself should look good on the outside. You can expect a few minor scrapes and bumps, especially in the bed if it lacks a bed liner. However, any major defects or damage should be a sign of caution.
Regardless of the make, model, or age of the truck, you should take a test drive and have it inspected before actually buying it if it is something that you’re interested in. These steps will help you find potential problems that may go unnoticed by a visual inspection alone. Best of all, you will be using skilled experts mechanics to find more nuanced issues that may require additional repairs or become larger problems in the future.
Keeping Things Realistic
Even though you have a lot to gain by looking at used trucks, you will still have to pay more money for larger sizes and better features, just like a new vehicle. That is to say, don’t expect to be able to afford a top-of-the-line, barely used full-size truck for the price of a new midsize option.
The great thing about trucks is they tend to retain their value for many years. Unfortunately, when you’re buying a used one, you should expect some higher prices than you may be prepared for. This isn’t bad news, however. The best way to think about looking at used trucks is to slide the prices you see in new versions down several thousand dollars depending on how far back you look. More well-equipped trucks will still be more expensive than bare bone options, regardless of whether they are new or used.
It is important to keep these realistic expectations as you move forward. A used truck can be a great option to afford something that you wouldn’t otherwise look at on a new car lot. As long as you keep your expectations realistic, you’ll know exactly what to look for and what you can afford before you sign any permanent documents or papers.
Checking Out Your Used Truck Options Today
All it takes is a quick glance online to see just how many options you have to look at when considering a used truck. The best way to begin this process after you have listed out your must-have is to visit a local dealership. The face-to-face interaction that you can have with salespeople and experts is priceless. They can help you narrow down the list of possibilities or check out specific options.
If you find yourself unsure of how to start, give the dealership a call or email them online. They will be able to guide you from start to finish will making the overall experience frustration-free.
In no time at all, you just might find yourself in a brand new, used truck.