Top Benefits of Used Cars

There are numerous reasons to be excited about buying and owning a used car – the cause that is most compelling can vary from one individual to the next. The motivations for purchasing a pre-owned vehicle can be lumped into two main categories: style preference and budget. As for people who are looking to save some money on getting an automobile, the majority of them can meet this goal by preferring to drive cars, SUVs, vans, or trucks that have had at least one prior owner. The benefit of style might not be something that requires explaining, as entire communities have been built around classic and antique enthusiasts.

The Affordability Is Superb

Many people would be quick to take advantage of any opportunity to save thousands of dollars – especially if there needs can be met just the same as if they had paid the higher price. Buying used cars is a strategy that can be deployed in order to protect the balance of your bank account by allowing you to satisfy your need for personal or family transportation without paying much. In many instances, the high level of affordability inherent to pre-owned autos enables buyers to get a better car than they originally thought they would be able to buy.

You Get to Own Your Favorite Model

While a lot of people pick the vehicles they purchase purely for budget and functionality, there are still many who get a particular car because it is the one that best matches up with their tastes. For car enthusiasts, lots full of used cars is where they have the most pleasure shopping for their next automobile – the Chevy Camaro and the Ford Mustang are prime examples of cars often purchased used because of the performance and visual appeal of earlier models.

The list of benefits of buying a pre-owned can be quite long, but a great percentage of the people who purchase used find that either their taste in style or the friendliness towards their budget the most compelling reasons.

Tips for Buying Your Teenager a Used Car

When your teenager reaches driving age and wants a car, you will probably have many decisions to make. Not only will you have to compromise with your teen when it comes to what you will pay for and what make and model is acceptable, you will also have to consider which used cars are the safest for him or her to drive. If you’re ready to buy your teen a car, we’re here to help with a few tips that might make the processes easier.

Think Simplicity

While your teenager probably has a make and model already in mind, you may want to make some boundaries clear before you start browsing used cars together. Not only will price be a factor, but it can be expensive to insure teen drivers as well. Their age and inexperience make them a considerable liability to many insurance companies, so choosing a no-frills vehicle may help you save money.

Do Your Homework

While we can help you choose a safe used car for your teen, it might also help if you perform some research on your own before you visit our lot. Take the time to discover which used cars have the best safety ratings, which ones have additional safety equipment that might keep your child safer and which are the least expensive to operate. The more you know before you begin to look at individual cars, the easier it might be to arrive at a decision.

Prepare Your Teen for Test Drives

Even if you will be doing much of the legwork and putting up the cash for your teen’s car, you may still want to prepare him or her for what will be involved with test driving vehicles. Teach them what to look and listen for and help them prepare a list of questions to ask our sales associate for during and after a test drive.

Buying your teenager his or her first used car doesn’t have to be a headache. Compromise, research and careful planning can all ensure a more enjoyable buying experience for you both.

Getting the Best Interest Rate on a Used Car

You’ve narrowed down your search for the perfect used car for your needs and budget and are ready to address your finance options. If you won’t be buying the car outright, you’ll need to finance it, which means paying interest. To avoid paying more than necessary for used cars, you’ll want to keep your interest rate as low as possible, which you can easily do with a few good tips.

Think About Financing Through the Dealer

While you might think financing your car through a dealer is automatically more expensive, the truth of the matter is that doing so could net you a pretty solid deal. This is because dealerships can offer incentives like zero-percent financing and other specialized low rates. Check to see what’s on the table before you think about financing elsewhere.

Consider a Certified Pre-Owned Car

It seems counter intuitive, but older cars usually come with higher interest rates when compared to newer models. Instead of thinking you’re better off with a new model, consider the fact that dealerships sometimes have zero-percent interest specials on their certified pre-owned cars. Be sure to ask about them as you’re walking up and down the aisles checking out cars.

Consider Your Term Length

If it’s at all possible, get a car loan with the shortest term length possible. The reason for this is that a shorter term length equals a shorter repayment length, which means a lower amount of interest paid over the life of your loan. Another great thing about getting a term length as short as possible is that you don’t have to worry as much about being upside down on your loan, which is what happens when you owe more on your car than it’s worth.

As you can see, there are several things you can do to keep the interest rate low on your used car. Be sure to put these tips to good use.

How Buying from a Dealer Simplifies Your Life

Buying a used car from a dealer has a number of advantages of over getting a car from a private seller. For one thing, our reputation is on the line with every car we sell, which isn’t the case for an individual. Our business model is built on satisfying the customer, so that we get repeat business and positive word of mouth. This goodwill allows us to sell more used cars, which is our goal.

Another powerful advantage we have is convenience. Where else can you find a large selection of vehicles for sale than on a dealership lot? We carry everything from cars that are a year-old to vehicles that have been around a bit longer, giving you a variety of price points to choose from. We also offer a range of makes and models to test drive and kick the wheels a bit.

There’s a lot more, too. We offer financing packages that allow you to drive home the car of your dreams. We also are often able to provide lower interest rates than you might find on your own. Our cars have all been inspected by mechanics; they don’t go out on the lot until they have been cleaned and fixed of any mechanical issues. You won’t drive from our lot only to have the bumper fall off.

Finally, we handle all of the paperwork for your new set of wheels. We will set you up with registration and title so you don’t have to do the work yourself. When it comes to buying used cars, we are the place to go.

What to Look for During a Test Drive

Deciding what your next car is going to be is an important decision. The car should not only look and feel the way you want, it should also be a dependable way to get you where you are going. When test driving used cars, there are a few things to keep in mind.

First Impression

Before you even take the car out on the open road, take stock of the first impression it makes. A secondhand care is going to have a little wear and tear, but it is important to make sure there are no rips or stains that might not come out. Give the engine a good look to make sure that there are no signs of leaks or cracked hoses. Notice the smell of the vehicle to gauge how much you might have to invest in removing odors left by the last owner. Your dealer can be a great source of information, so feel free to ask about any concerns you have.

Personal Fit

Notice how the car feels when you drive it. Are you able to sit comfortably in the seat, and do you think it will remain comfortable on longer drives? Is it easy to adjust to the car’s steering capability? It is a good idea to choose a car that is a good fit for you and the way you drive.

Road Readiness

Play with all the bells and whistles to make sure that they are working. Test things like the air conditioner, the heater and the sound system. More importantly, pay attention to how the engine sounds, how well the car brakes and how easily the car shifts between gears. Check with the dealer on the car’s maintenance history so that, if you ultimately choose to take the car home, you will have a better understanding of its care.

Why Canada’s used-car world is becoming a buyer’s market

TORONTO — The balance of power in the used car market is shifting towards shoppers as improved data and online offerings create more opportunities to push for the best price.

A fast-evolving online marketplace is providing more intelligence on the fair value of cars, said Cliff Banks, a Detroit-based auto retail expert.

“I don’t know that it can be any more transparent…they all provide intelligence on the pricing and the deal of the vehicle, whether it’s a good deal, a fair deal.”

Kijiji Canada recently announced it will add a standalone auto sales site that will roll out later this year to keep up with shifting expectations. The site will add reviews of dealers as well as market pricing information from Carproof.

“The key feature for us, and one of the biggest, the biggest win for us is what’s called price transparency or price analysis,” said Matt McKenzie, general manager at Kijiji Canada.

The online classified company, owned by eBay, already boasts of being the largest player in the Canadian market with about 500,000 vehicle listings. Autotrader, owned by Etobicoke-based Trader Corp., lists about 444,000 vehicles on its site while there are many other offerings on the market as well.

Listing companies are boosting their online presence as the used vehicle market is set for significant growth, said Dennis DesRosiers, president of DesRosiers Automotive Consultants.

“There’s tremendous opportunity, and that brings in all the different retail players and their approach of, how do I get a piece of that?”

While new vehicle sales are expected to be largely flat at about two million this year, the used vehicle market is set to add half a million more in sales in the next three to five years, on top of the three million that changed hands last year, said DesRosiers.

The rise in the used vehicle market comes as improved quality in the past decade means cars and trucks are lasting much longer, allowing for a potential lifespan of four to six owners from the two or three expected not long ago.

“It takes 23 years to remove the vehicles from the road now, a decade ago it only took about 12, so it’s essentially doubled,” said DesRosiers.

Used vehicles also offer margins that are two to three times higher than for new cars, adding to their appeal, he said.

The quality and information improvements have significantly changed the overall used retail market, said DesRosiers.

“It’s not that far long ago, call it 15 years ago or maybe 10 years ago, where the used car market was largely a culture of deceit…even if the online capacity was there, there was just so much riffraff in the used car market that it was very dangerous. A lot of that has changed.”

The improved access to data means used-car retailers have to be more transparent and competitive about their pricing, said Jamie Tekela, director of pre-owned operations at Pfaff Automotive Partners.

“You need to really justify what you’re asking, why you’re asking it, and you can’t go asking $500 more for the same Honda Civic with the same mileage. It just it doesn’t work any more.”

“It’s night and day, to be perfectly honest. It’s gotten a lot more customer friendly,” he said.

The improved information on crash reports, comparable sales, and other metrics hasn’t done away with potential negotiations but does give more justification, said Jamie.

“There’s always going to be negotiations when trying to buy and sell vehicles, but with so much information available to each and every one of us, it’s a lot easier to explain our rhyme and reason why we’re asking what for a car.”

Car-buy advice: 6 affordable entry-level luxury rides

TORONTO — Luxury automakers long ago realized that in order to grow, they need to move down-market by making smaller, more affordable vehicles.

In 2005, Mercedes launched the diminutive B-Class hatchback. BMW began producing the 1 Series in 2004.

While rich customers spending $100,000 on full-size luxury sedans from these companies might’ve been mortified to see such plebeian vehicles in showrooms, semi-affordable entry-level models are now a staple of every luxury brand’s lineup.

The vehicles assembled below are the most affordable ways to drive off a luxury car dealer’s lot. They all have prices under $40,000 and come in all kinds of shapes, from coupe, to sedan, to SUV.

In Europe and the U.S., luxury vehicles make up a larger percentage of the overall market than they do in Canada.

However, that’s changing. Sales of luxury cars and SUVs in Canada are leading industry growth, posting double-digit, year-over-year increases, according to a 2017 Scotiabank report.

Expect entry-level luxury cars to feel fairly Spartan — unless you dive into the option list — and be smaller than something similarly priced from a mainstream brand.

Your head tells you to resist. You’re paying more to have that luxury badge on the steering wheel. But, increasingly, our hearts prevail and desirability takes the day.

Volvo XC40

Price: $39,900

Aston Martin’s chief designer, when recently asked which other brand is doing good design work, replied: Volvo. The Swedish company’s turnaround is in full swing. They’ve come so far from those boxy station wagons. The XC40 stands out from the masses of other small SUVs by looking both distinctive and stylish. The interior is full of useful details, too, like hooks for takeout food and a removable garbage bin for receipts and old parking passes.

Mercedes-Benz B-Class

Price: $35,900

While popular in Europe, the B-Class never sold well in the U.S. Here in Canada the smallest Mercedes always found more buyers. The three-pointed star is the car’s most prominent design feature on purpose. You wouldn’t spend this kind of money on any other front-wheel-drive sub-compact. If you’re interested, you may want to wait for the upcoming A-Class hatchback. The price will be a smidgen higher, but it’s more of a bona fide luxury car and the interior is in a different league.

Cadillac ATS Sedan

Price: $37,945

This is your last chance to buy Cadillac’s often-overlooked ATS. Production of the compact sport sedan is winding down as of this year. The rear-drive machine had the performance and handling chops to rival the best Germany had to offer. The base 2.0-litre motor made 272 horsepower, and the big V-6 was good for 335 hp. While the interior was never quite up to par, it was a solid comeback effort from Cadillac. Expect it to be replaced, eventually, by an all-new sub-compact model.

Audi A3 sedan

Price: $34,300

The A3 sedan was introduced in 2013. Compared to its German rivals, the smallest Audi feels grown-up. It looks just like the bigger A4, which is a large part of its appeal. Refreshed for 2017, the four-door A3 is a more practical choice than BMW’s 2 Series coupe or Mercedes’ fastback CLA sedan. The base model is front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available for $39,100. If it’s performance you’re after, the $62,900, 400 hp, RS3 is both the cheapest model in Audi Sport’s lineup and the most fun to drive.

BMW 230i Coupe

Price: $38,050

BMW is the only one of the German luxury automakers to offer rear-wheel drive in its most affordable model. For many purists, this car is a return to BMW’s glory days. Handling is nicely balanced and the controls are feel-some. The punchy four-cylinder makes 248 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque, enough to get the car from 0-100 km/h in 5.6 seconds. A six-speed manual transmission is standard while a paddle-shift automatic is available for an extra $1,600. The $1,850 Performance Pack adds adaptive sport suspension. Downsides? It’s heavy for such a small car and it only has two doors, which will limit its appeal.

Acura ILX

Price: $29,990

It is mightily affordable for a car with a premium brand badge, but if you put it next to a Honda Civic you’ll quickly see why. The ILX has always been an up-market version of the best-selling Civic. For 2019, Acura gave it a visual overhaul, dressing it up with fancy jewel-like headlights and leather upholstery but its humble origins show through in big chunks of black plastic in the cabin. The 2.4-litre engine makes a fruity 201 horsepower, and is mated to a dual-clutch automatic transmission. The Acura has good residual value and gets top marks for initial quality, but it’s hard to forget it’s a Civic.

Infiniti QX30

Price: $38,490

This is Infiniti’s all-new entrant in the red-hot compact luxury SUV segment. The QX30 is built in England and was co-developed with the Mercedes GLA. Infiniti undercuts the BMW X1 and aforementioned Benz, and offers a (relatively) cavernous trunk. The 208 horsepower engine won’t light your hair on fire, but it’s enough. Leatherette trim is standard. Optional real-leather on the seats and dashboard make the cabin feel properly luxurious, but it’s part of a $5,000 option package. Infiniti expects the QX30 to attract first-time luxury car buyers, targeting customers in their early 30s.

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The Financial Benefits of Purchasing Your Next Car Used

If you are seeking out ways to save money in the future and watch your finances, choosing to purchase your next car used is a wise decision. Cars are not good investments and the odds of you selling any car for more than you purchased it for are quite slim. Therefore, it is important to focus on minimizing depreciation. Additionally, used cars have lower fees and insurance rates.

Less Depreciation

It is no secret that depreciation is problem when it comes to cars. When you buy a brand-new car and decide to sell it a few years later, you will be fortunate to get anything over half of what you paid for it originally. Alternatively, used cars depreciate at a much slower rate because the greatest amount of value is lost as soon as the new car is driven off the lot where it was purchased.

Lower Payments and Fees

A few of the other major advantages to opting for used cars include the lower car insurance rates and the cheaper registrations costs. Since there is less risk for insurance companies in the unfortunate case you get in an accident with a used car, they are far more likely to offer you attractive rates. You can even choose to opt out of collision coverage all together and save a significant amount over time. Lower payments essentially equate to less stress because you will not be fearful of getting in an accident and having to deal with expensive repairs of fixing your new car.

Considering used cars as opposed to new ones can be a smart financial decision. It can be hard to eliminate financial stress from your life, but choosing to go with a used car is one great way to minimize your debt. In the unfortunate case you got in a collision, having a used car can minimize costly repairs.

5 Benefits of Used Cars

When you set out to look for your dream car, you want one that has all the right features but doesn’t break the bank. Used car dealerships offer you myriad car choices, and they are your best bet for finding that perfect car. Here are five of the benefits of buying used cars.

The first and perhaps most obvious benefit of a used car is the lower price sticker. The steepest depreciation in value comes in the first two or three years of a car’s life. When you buy used, you profit from that depreciation, whereas an original car owner inevitably takes a serious financial hit on trade-in.

Used cars tend to come with lower down payments as well as lower prices. Furthermore, insurance and taxes on your used car will be less expensive, which means you have more money in your wallet at the end of the month.

If you want a car loaded with all the hottest tech, the latest safety features or the cleanest engine developments, you have plenty of options to choose from among cars made in the last two to four years. You can get a thoroughly modern car without the sticker shock or the drastic depreciation.

If you are operating on a tight budget, cars older than four years are probably the ones in your sights. Although buying an older used car may not leave you with Bluetooth compatibility, you will still have access to plenty of safety features in cars that date as far back as early 2000.

Last but not least, if your passion is classic cars, you have only one option. Used is the only way to go. There are plenty of other benefits to buying used cars. These cars give you the greatest bang for your buck and offer you the widest purchasing variety.

Find a Wise Purchase in Used Cars

A car can be an expensive purchase. Not only the initial purchase of the car, either. When you think about buying a car, you don’t think about all of the other fees that you will be paying. This is everything from registration fees to your insurance, inspection to minor repairs. When you take all of this into consideration, it may seem like a good idea to save money where you can. A great way to get the car you need without the financial stress is by exploring your options with used cars.

Dealing With Dealers

In order to know what you are dealing with, it is a smart move to find a dealer that you can trust. When you feel comfortable with your dealer, you will be able to feel confident in your purchase. Do a bit of research and see where your dealer stands when compared with others. Not only will this make you feel like a smart shopper, but you will know that you are getting a car that you can be proud of for years to come.

Make Your Pick

After you have found your dealer, it can be a great idea to explore the selection that is available on the lot. Even if you are not ready to purchase a car that day, it can be beneficial to see what awaits you. This will help you to explore your financial options while perusing the merchandise, allowing you to make the right choice for you. There are many models of used cars out there, so after you have spotted a vehicle that looks like the one for you, make sure to learn as much as you can about the exact make and model.

Used cars can be a great place to begin when you are looking for a car. When you do your research, you will easily find a dealer and a car that will make you happy.