In addition to a house, a car is probably the most expensive item owned by most Nigerian families. Although a car is exactly what every Nigerian family needs, not all Nigerian can afford it. However, most people have devised a wise solution to own cars even if it is not the car that they dream to have - purchasing a fairly used vehicle, or "tokunbo” cars in Nigeria.
And here are the 15 things you should consider before buying a tokunbo car:
1. Your current financial situation
Money is the first thing you must have before buying a car even a new or used one. This is the most important issue you need to consider carefully as coming to a decision. You need to consider not only the car’s price but also the cost of its maintenance.
For example, it will be a better decision for buying a tokunbo N2 million Toyota Camry than spending 1.7 million for a Mercedes-Benz because you know, the cost for maintenance of a Mercedes is much more expensive than that of the Camry.
You need to consider not only the car’s price but also the cost of its maintenance
2. Don’t put insurance fee out of your consideration
You should know the fact that the more expensive the car is and the newer a model is, the higher its insurance fee will be. Therefore, if you just have enough money to buy a car but you still can’t pay its insurance fee, which means you can’t completely afford it.
3. Consider the car’s price
Before driving home a secondhand car, you should do a detailed research including its price. You can search on some website to have a likely price of the car model you intend to buy. Once you have an approximate cost of the car, you will get an advantage in dealing with the car seller who always has their own tricks.
What is a Good Deal when Buying a Used Car? (How to Buy a Used Car)
4. Consider the car’s condition
Understanding the physical condition of a vehicle is paramount in choosing the right car. For the time being, make sure you have a reliable and experienced mechanic look at it. This should be done before entering into negotiations. Don’t be fooled by the new-looking appearance of the car, it may be just a distraction from the actual condition of the vehicle.
5. Think about the reasons for sale of the owner
To avoid any trouble after buying a tokunbo car, you should ask the owner for the reasons why he or she wants to sell this car. If the reason is acceptable, then consider other factors.
6. Check the car’s mileage
If you want to know how old the car is, checking its mileage is an ideal way for you. The mileage will disclose how long the car has been used, how long it has run and also how much it is should be sold for.
If you want to know how old the car is, checking its mileage is an ideal way for you
7. Consider an alternative
Of course, as buying a secondhand car, you don’t need to insist on buying the exact model in your mind. So choosing another car for an alternative is a smart solution as you can’t buy the wanted car for some reasons. Who knows, the alternative may be a better one. And in this situation, you can choose the previous-year model or a model of a related car brand.
You don’t need to insist on buying the exact model in your mind
8. Check the car’s ignition
This car part should be paid more attention. On a large scale, the car condition can be determined by its ignition. Because the warning light is on and off as the car’s ignition works up. If the lights on the panel are on while the engine starts, it is a clear sign that there's something wrong with the car. Some car seller will hide this fault by using a tape to cover the lights.
9. Know how long the seller’s business is
The dealer should be an experienced person because they seem to be more reputed and ready to help you. But be careful, they can also be trickier than the new ones.
10. The car gearbox
The vehicle's transmission status is an important determinant of its health, to know how good the transmission is, take a test drive. If you are not an expert, you can call for an expert’s help to drive the car.
>>> Read also: Tips to protect the gearbox - the most expensive part in your car
11. Check the engine’s strength
You can determine the car engine’s strength by a short drive with the vehicle. You have to turn on the A/C system and see how the engine works. If there is any vibration, it means the engine’s condition is not good enough.
You can determine the car engine’s strength by a short drive with the vehicle
12. Take a look at the Vehicle Identification Number
The V.I.N is a very helpful thing for you as buying a used car. It will show you the car’s history even legal or stolen issues. So don’t forget to ask the seller for the V.I.N.
Have you ever wondered that why some cars are popular than others? Of course, they are better, more quality and suitable for a larger number of people. So choosing a favorite car model to buy is not a bad idea if you don’t want to own a unique car.
14. Availability of car parts
Think about the car maintenance, you should choose the model that has its parts are available and easy to maintain.
15. Testimony of previous buyers
If the car you intend to buy was owned by some other people before, ask them for any problem with this car. If most of them give you negative feedbacks, reconsider your decision carefully.
>>> Click here to get more useful tips and advice for your car buying and selling