What to know before buying a pre-owned car

by Latashni Gobi Nathan (latagn@sph.com.sg)
published on 11 February 2016

Get pro tips on getting the right car at the right price.

Pre-owned cars are a viable option for car buyers who want to spend less on this major purchase. Here’s what to consider when carshopping.


First, set a budget. Keep in mind the amount of ready cash you have and what you can afford to fork out every month for additional expenses  like petrol, insurance, and  other maintenance. Mr Eddie Loo, the managing director of  Car Times Automobile said: “Beyond the price of  the car, there are other monetary commitments you need to be aware of such as car servicing, Electronic Road  Pricing (ERP), parking fees and  petrol. Make sure that you are able to afford the financial commitment before making a purchase.”Think about what type of car would  best suit your lifestyle.Mr Loo said: “There is no ‘onesize-fits-all’ approach to car buying. It depends on the ndividual’s lifestyle, personality and  budget.”Whether it is a sedan, family car, hatchback, or sports car, know what you want to make the search process easier and quicker.


Look for second-hand car deals on The Straits Times Classified or at events like the Carnival@Automobile Megamart, where you can find a wide range of cars to choose from. Mr Raymond Tang,  vice president of  the Singapore Vehicle Traders Association (SVTA), said good car dealers will keep both the interests of the buyer and seller in mind.“The advantage of going to a car dealer is that if something were to go wrong, you can go back to them to fix the problem. Usually, car dealers will showcase cars that have been inspected,” said Mr Tang. Mr Loo said: “Some people go for brands while others buy cars for practical reasons, so they need to consider factors such as price range, the number of seats and ease of driving.


Find out whether the car has been involved in an accident before, how many owners have had the car, whether modifications have been done, and what the monthly costs are like. Mr Tang emphasised that having all the information you need from the seller or car dealer is crucial to making your decision.“You must have peace of mind when buying your car. Don’t buy a car  if you are unsure of  its condition,” he said. Mr Loo said:  “Finding the right car can be stressful for those who are unfamiliar with car specifications. Let the salesperson know your needs and preferences so that they can recommend a car that can suits your needs.”Make the necessary tweaks and ensure that you get motor  insurance when you take over ownership of a used car. Drive the car  immediately so that if  there is an issue, you can go back to your dealer and  have them fix it.

Attractive deals

Get the best prices when yousell or buy your car at the Carnival@Automobile Megamart this weekend.

Where: 61 Ubi Avenue 2Automobile Megamart Singapore 408898

When: Jan 9 and 10Time: 10am to 7pm