New Jersey Used Car Buying Guide

Free information on used car prices, used car dealers, buying used cars, as well as tips and links to resources to help with every aspect of car ownership.

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     Most used car guides fall into three general categories.  The first (and probably the most popular) relate to pricing.  Let's face it.  The average buyer (or seller) is at a disadvantage when trying to negotiate a purchase from or a sale to a dealer.  How do you factor in make, model, accessories, and mileage unless you deal with those things every day?  Even dealers like to look at auction results you'll most likely never see.  The price guides are not quite as up-to-date and locally oriented as auction results, but they can put you in the right ballpark.

     Better yet, you can buy this guides very reasonably at Amazon and take them with you while you shop, or access much of the same info online for free!  Popular price guides online include Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, and Nada.  (For the record, those three sites contain all the nationally oriented info most buyers would ever want on ANY aspect of used car purchases.)

     The next type of guide deals with quality and performance.  Online, you can find a lot of this info at the three sites linked above.  For an excellent online or offline reference, I'd recommend Consumer Reports.  If you don't want to subscribe to the magazine, you should be able to find it in any library.  You can also subscribe to their online service for a single month for $4.95.  Article cover topics such as reliability, fuel efficiency, safety, and much more.  Finally, the print excellent used car buying guides which are easy to find, and priced very reasonably at Amazon.

     The last type of guides are the specialty guides, which are most often for classic or high end autos.  I love a beautiful car, but those with limited resources should be careful with such a purchase.  The 15 year old Mercedes in mint condition that you purchase for $2,800 may be the envy of all your friends, but when you find out that new wiper blades will set you back $375, it may lose some of its appeal.  (For the record, Mercedes makes a great car, and I could just as easily have picked many others for a similar example.)  Once again, I'd recommend Amazon  for many of the specialty guides.



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