Trust Us, We Know How to Sell Used Cars: Our Complete Guide to Help You

Trust Us, We Know How to Sell Used Cars: Our Complete Guide to Help You

Sign Up to get great deals for cars!

Subscribe to our blog that will make you look like an expert dealer.

Shopping for a used car can be a time-consuming, stressful process. First, you have to find out which car is right for you among a sea of competitors. Do you need a sedan, SUV, or truck? What about a used car that's certified pre-owned and comes with a warranty? 

Besides which make and model to choose, locating a used vehicle in good mechanical condition can also be challenging. You need something that's been thoroughly inspected and vouched for, so you can rest assured it'll be good for years to come. 

Though you can save thousands buying a used vehicle instead of a new one, you also don't want to have to endlessly haggle for the best price. Dealing with a salesperson or a sales manager can be a stressful process, so it's good to find the best way to streamline your purchase and make it as easy as possible.

Thankfully, Shift makes buying a used car easier than ever. Read on to learn why.


No items found.

How to buy a used car: budget considerations

Before you start researching makes, models, and features, find out how much you can spend. 

If you're paying cash, it's as simple as not spending all of your savings. But if you'll be taking out a loan, there are other factors to consider.

If you've decided to finance your new used car, getting pre-approval for a loan before you begin to shop can make the process go more smoothly, and you'll spend less time waiting around. It also shows that you're serious about purchasing and not just there to browse or take a test drive.

One helpful method in determining an advantageous loan is using a loan calculator. With an auto loan calculator, you can adjust factors like down payment, interest rate, and loan terms to find which one is right. By the time you decide on which used vehicle to buy, you'll be able to focus your concentration on the best car rather than working out finances. 

When it’s time to finance your next vehicle, Shift works with a network of trusted lenders, ensuring you get the best deal.

Researching how to buy a used car

With so many choices on makes, models, and configurations, you'll need to spend a reasonable amount of time researching. 

For what purpose will you use your car? Do you venture off-road or regularly drive in snow? Do you have a family? If so, you'll also want to get a vehicle that's highly rated for safety. Looking through the tests performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety will show you how the options on your list hold up in a collision. 

These are all factors to consider as you zero in on the right car. Once you've spent some time researching and knowing what features are most important to you, try to limit your search to three specific vehicles. 

When you have these three vehicles selected, dig deeper into your research and determine their reliability and ownership costs. One fundamental metric is the total cost of ownership. Though a particular car may be appealing at first glance, it may be a hassle to own when you total the costs for maintenance, insurance, and depreciation. 

Two good sources of information are Consumer Reports and J.D. Power, which analyze maintenance reports from owners and give ratings for used vehicles. 

With Shift’s easy-to-use website, you can browse through a wide selection of makes and models, so you can get just the car you’re looking for.

How to think of pricing when buying a used car

Obviously, you'll want to find the best price for the car you've decided on. Shopping around, you can get a feel for the market and what you can expect to pay when you finally find the exact car you're looking for. 

Good sources of information on current pricing are Kelley Blue Book and the National Auto Dealers Association, both specializing in used car values. On these websites, you can enter a car's specific options, mileage, and overall condition and get a figure for what its price range should be. 

You'll also have to decide which options are important to you on the make and model you've selected, as they can drive up the price or be hard to find. Do you really need an all-wheel-drive vehicle? Or do you have to have luxury features like leather seats or satellite navigation? Foregoing options that are unnecessary for the roads you drive or are just creature comforts can save you thousands. 

It can be a challenge to find the best price on a used car. When you choose Shift, you can be sure you’re getting the best price, with their fair, no-haggle pricing driven by powerful machine learning algorithms and tons of data.

2016 Mercedes-Benz C 300 (from $24,450)

2016 Mercedes-Benz C 300 (from $24,450)
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
30-Day warranty
Free 7-day return
Free 7-day trial return
30-days warranty
No-Contact Test DrivesButton Text
No-Contact Test Drives
Shop Used Mercedes-Benz C 300
2016 Mercedes-Benz C 300 (from $24,450)
30-Day warranty
Free 7-day return
Free 7-day trial return
30-days warranty
No-Contact Test Drives
No-Contact Test Drives
Shop Used Mercedes-Benz C 300
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

How to locate your specific choice of used car

You’ve done your research, so now comes the time to locate the specific vehicle you want, with the options you want, and take steps to purchase it.

The internet is an excellent place to start, specifically Shift, which has hundreds of makes and models of used cars that are just as good as new. 

If possible, it's a good idea to take a test drive and see if the car you've chosen is really right for you. What looks appealing over the internet might not have the driving dynamics you'd hoped for. Ride, acceleration, and handling can't be discerned by simply reading articles or watching videos. When you put a few miles on your next car or SUV, you can be confident you're making the right decision.

With Shift’s great selection of used cars and trucks, you’re sure to find one that suits you. Want to take a test drive before buying? No problem. In some markets, a Shift concierge will bring the car to you for a test drive free of charge, so you know how it performs before buying. And if for any reason you’re not completely satisfied with your purchase, Shift allows you to return the vehicle for a full refund within seven days, no questions asked.

No items found.

Knowing a used car’s history and mechanical inspection

You can't be sure of a car's history until you view a vehicle history report. A vehicle history report can reveal things like a rolled-back odometer, salvage title, or major collisions. 

Two trusted sources of vehicle history reports are Carfax and AutoCheck, who provide detailed reports to give you a sense of reassurance before you move forward with your purchase. 

With Shift, we are completely transparent and offer you the Carfax directly as well as perform 150-pt inspections on all vehicles we sell, so you know our cars come with peace of mind.

No items found.

Summing up how to buy a used car

Buying a used car can be a challenge, but if you prepare yourself with the correct information and research, you can save thousands and get a vehicle that's good for years of reliable driving. Getting pre-approval for a car loan, obtaining a vehicle history report, and locating a vehicle with a fair price can give you the peace of mind you're getting a quality used vehicle that's as good as new.

When you go with Shift, they have everything you need for a great buying experience. And because Shift works with a network of trusted lenders who compete for your business, you’ll receive the best rate on financing.

2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited (from $26,500)

2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited (from $26,500)
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
30-Day warranty
Free 7-day return
Free 7-day trial return
30-days warranty
No-Contact Test Drives
No-Contact Test Drives
Shop Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited (from $26,500)
30-Day warranty
Free 7-day return
Free 7-day trial return
30-days warranty
No-Contact Test Drives
No-Contact Test Drives
Shop Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

No items found.

No items found.

No items found.
Author
Shift Editorial Team