7 Tips For Buying A Secondhand Toyota Car Near Wilmette

If you’re still learning how to drive and want to buy your first car, or are already driving and looking for an extra vehicle for your family, business, or work, you will benefit from buying a used car from a reputable dealer. Used cars are cheaper options compared to when you buy new vehicles. And because they have been in production for a while, there is an abundance of parts for when you need them serviced for repairs and maintenance. You can also find tons of reviews from people who have owned and driven such cars, making the selection process easier for you. To help you find the best vehicle, here are some tips for buying a secondhand car near Wilmette.

Tips for buying secondhand vehicles

Choose based on your need

The first thing you need to do in your search for the perfect used car would be to choose one based on your needs. For example, if you have a family of six, you shouldn’t settle for a car that comfortably sits five people only. And if you are planning to use a secondhand vehicle to haul produce from your farm, you shouldn’t limit yourself to a sedan. Choose a type of vehicle based on what you actually need. If you’re looking for a family car, a used Toyota Camry will be perfect for you. But if you’re looking for a reliable vehicle to haul things through various terrain, a used Toyota Tacoma will be a great choice.

Set your budget

Next, set a realistic budget for this project. Sit down and take a good hard look at your finances to see if you can actually afford to buy a car at this time. You can get a car loan, but it’s best if you don’t. If you have enough money to buy one, consider the expenses you need to make from time to time: fuel and maintenance costs, registration, repairs for issues you might find since it’s a secondhand car, and so on. Think long-term: you first pay to buy the car, then continue spending to keep using the car. A used Toyota car is cheap and easy to maintain, thanks to the availability of parts in the market.

Do some research

After choosing a car that suits your needs and fits your budget, you need to do some research next. Go online and read articles about your prospective vehicles to know what they’re like, if they are high-maintenance, and if there’s a community of people who use that same vehicle. Do this until you get a clear picture as to how your target used car could be the best option among the many vehicles sold in the secondhand market today. Make sure to check the internet for your prospective car’s resale value to get an idea as to how it will cost you to buy one.

Checking websites will also help you determine the most popular kinds of used cars to buy near your area. A quick internet search will show you that the Toyota Camry is at the top of the list for used cars in Chicagoland.

Contact the seller

Now that you’re about ready to select a car from the many available options in your preferred category, you need to go online and look for reputable sellers nearby. There are a number of used car dealers in the areas in and around Wilmette. Look for reviews about them online to see if they’re worth your time and effort to visit. You can also look for personal listings made by car owners who are selling their vehicles. Once you find a potential vehicle to buy, contact the seller and set up an appointment so you can visit and check the vehicle yourself.

Conduct an inspection

Now we proceed to the next step: inspecting the car that just might become yours. If the seller is a car dealer, visit their dealership. If the seller is selling their personal vehicle, opt to visit them at their address. Make sure to check the car’s history with the state using its Vehicle Identification Number to make sure that there are no outstanding loans connected to the car, or that it isn’t stolen.

You will also need to physically inspect the vehicle if it’s in good condition. Check every part for issues: the doors, the bumpers, the head and tail lights, and so on. Pop open the bonnet to see if the engine is in a good condition. If you know a mechanic who’s willing to go with you, have them inspect the vehicle for any potentially hidden issues that might cause a lot of headache down the road. This will save you from unnecessary trouble.

Take the car for a test drive

After visually inspecting the car, ask the seller if you can take it for a test drive. This way, you will be able to determine whether it’s in good running condition, if it needs some repairs, or if you shouldn’t buy it. Pay close attention to the following:
  • How the engine sounds—does it sound good or does it make unusual noises?

  • How the steering wheel feels—does it turn smoothly, or is there any shaking or tugging?

  • How the brake feels—does the vehicle slow down and come to a complete stop when you engage the brakes?

  • How the transmission feels—does the car experience any hesitation or difficulty shift gears, whether it’s a manual or automatic?

  • How the electronic components perform—are the lights, horns, power windows, A/C, radio, and other electronic features functioning properly?

  • How the suspension feels—does the car run on various terrain smoothly, or is it very wobbly and shaky?
Taking the vehicle for a test drive gives you the opportunity to get a good feel for the vehicle and know if there are certain repairs you need to make. You will also be able to gauge your ability to drive the vehicle and maneuver it in tight spots.

Negotiate, but don’t haggle

If you’re satisfied with the vehicle’s overall condition and performance and would like to purchase it, then it’s time to negotiate with the seller. It won’t hurt to ask the seller to adjust their price to an amount that’s comfortable to both of you, but it will definitely cause them to back off of you if you haggle too low. As a rule of thumb, do not approach sellers if you cannot afford their used vehicle at full price, and respectfully ask to lower their asking price by a small amount only. Negotiate based on the vehicle’s actual condition.

Trust us to care for your secondhand vehicle as if it’s ours

Purchasing a secondhand vehicle allows you to enjoy the benefits of driving a new car at a significantly lower price. Both old and new vehicles do the same thing anyway—take you places comfortably, at your own convenience. Buying used simply means paying less and avoiding car loans you usually make when purchasing new. That said, our tips for buying a secondhand car near Wilmette will only help you get the car you want and need. You still need to give it the care that it deserves. For this, take your newly-acquired vehicle to our HEART Certified Auto Care branch in Wilmette. We’ll take care of it like it’s ours.

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