What Are The Signs To Look Out For When Buying A Car?

We’ve all been the person, or know a person, who quickly needs to buy a car because their old one has suddenly died. As far as stress and hassle go, there are not too many situations that can compete with buying a car, old or new. The money involved, the longevity of the vehicle, the safety of your family, etc. all make this purchase one of the most important in your life. So, when you are in the dealership and about to part with your cash, you need to check for certain signs. These signs could be the difference between a great buy or a total distinctly average one.

Buying-A-CarImage credit: frankieleon


Not all dealers are reliable, and you need to know which ones are before you make your final decision. Some, like The Auto Art, have a great reputation, and this is one of the best ways to figure out whether dealerships are reliable or not. Talk to previous customers, check comparison websites, even have a look on website forums to get a good idea. Try and look for reviews from unbiased sources because these have no reason to lie or give good feedback.


Car dealers should have qualifications and licences that allow them to trade in the area. If they don’t, there is the possibility that they are ‘cowboys’, or salespersons who are trying to take advantage. Every dealership needs a licence, regardless of where they trade, so that is one of the most routine signs to look for. Better yet, look for a trade association sign. Dealers that are part of an association have to follow strict rules and guidelines that affect their selling strategy and customer service. If they were not reliable, they wouldn’t be a part of the association.


A car mechanic plays a big part. I previously mentioned how important a decision is buying a car because of the safety aspect. A few dealerships, in the past and the present, have been known to use ‘mechanics’ to service their vehicles. They are friends who get a cut of the action. Don’t be afraid to ask about the mechanics and engineers and do background checks. Their reputation is almost as important as the reputation of the dealership.

Car Reports

Car dealers sell cars old and new. New cars don’t have reports because they should not have been driven before. But, used cars do, so they need the proper documentation to show they are safe to use and road legal. Any repairs or services that the car has been through should have been reported and documented with the dealer. These reports will provide you with important information.

‘No Refund’ Or ‘Sold As Seen’

Signs such as these should start alarm bells ringing. From the offset, they are an attempt to dilute your rights once you have made the purchase. You always want the ability to return your purchase if it is not sold as it was advertised.

The signs may be subtle, but they are always there, and they always tell a story.

Wilson Smith is a professional content writer and SEO executive.