One of the golden rules for those with little experience in cars is to prepare before going to the market to buy a used car because not all of them are the same and not all have had the same type of maintenance. This means that it is best to study the landscape of used cars and consult with a trusted mechanic before deciding whether to buy the vehicle that you like so much and that you have found at an unbeatable price.
The car title tells part of the story
One of the things to pay attention to when looking for a used car is the type of title it has. There are several types of titles that are awarded depending on what happened to the car, what it was used for, and the state where the title was received. Thus, we have the following:
- Salvage. This is a car that has been destroyed or damaged to the point where the cost of repair could be 75 to 100 percent of the total value of the car. Also those that have been stolen receive the title of Salvage . It should be noted that a car with a Salvage titlemay not be safe to drive.
- Rebuilt. This title is awarded to a car that has been destroyed or damaged and has been repaired and inspected. Note that some states do not have this type of title, so in those states a vehicle that has been repaired may still have the Salvage title .
- Junk / garbage. This type of title indicates that the vehicle can only be sold for parts or as scrap because it is irreparable.
- Flood damage. In the past it has been reported that some vehicles that were in a flood zone are offered for sale elsewhere. According to the experts, these vehicles can be fixed and make them look in good condition, the problem is that having been in a flood zone they could have hidden damage that could cost you dearly in the future.
- Fleet / Fleet . This title is given to cars that are used as a taxi, rental and in the police. A car that has been part of a fleet of cars may have been subjected to frequent use and extreme situations.
- Lemon. The car considered Lemon / lemon is one that, even being covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, has not been successful in repairing it despite countless attempts.
Unlike all the aforementioned, a vehicle whose title is clean is one that has not suffered any damage due to a serious accident or flood, has not had the odometer reset, has not been stolen or has been inspected for serious defects in its manufacture.
To buy or not to buy a rebuilt car?
In general, cars whose title indicates them as rebuilt are offered at a great price. Something like seeing is believing. It may be the case that you want to buy a luxury car and your budget does not allow it, and while you are looking for your next purchase you come across the car you have dreamed of and at an incredible price. The first thing you should do is ask about the history of the car and the title, because it could be a vehicle with a salvage or rebuilt title, depending on the state where they are offering it.
You may consider that it is advantageous to take advantage of that bargain, although it may happen that in the end it will be much more expensive due to the damages that could manifest in the future, or that when you decide to sell it the next buyer does not have an open mind to the possibility of acquiring a car whose title is indicative that it suffered severe damage. What you can be sure of is that a car dealer does not offer this type of car and that it will be difficult to get financing to buy it if you need it. These cars are typically 30 to 40 percent cheaper than a clean title car.
Now, if your heart is set on that bargain, it is recommended that you do the following:
- Use the services of a certified mechanic to review it and thus have greater certainty of what you are acquiring so that you will not take risks when it comes to your safety and that of yours.
- Regarding full coverage insurance, there are chances that an insurance agency will not approve full coverage for a rebuilt car. If you want full coverage, it is suggested that you first investigate if there is an insurance company that offers this service.
Your next purchase
If after knowing the details of a rebuilt car you have changed your desire to buy it, you have other options such as used cars and those certified by the manufacturer. These vehicles are offered at the used car dealership and may prove to be a better investment for you. Even more so if your credit is not at its best, buying a used car through an agency that works with high-risk lenders can help you rebuild your credit .