Used Car Checklist

used car checklist

A used car checklist can help you make sure you're researching wisely to find the vehicle that's just right for you. Whether you're shopping for a car to commute around NYC or an SUV to get you and your boards to the Pacific Ocean to hang ten, there are plenty of gently used cars options out there for car seekers across the nation.

So, what items should you check when buying a used car? Check them out below before browsing our used car inventory right here on our website.

1. Outline Your Car Needs

used car checklist

Before you set out on your used car shopping journey, take a few minutes to outline what it is you're looking for in your next ride. Fundamentally, why are you looking for an upgrade? Maybe, your compact sedan isn't large enough for your growing family, or you're interested in an eco-friendlier vehicle for getting to work and back.

Jot these reasons down, as they'll help you choose a vehicle category (sedan, SUV, hatchback, etc.), and that's the starting line of your vehicle research!

2. Determine Your Car-Buying Budget

Now that you have an idea of the sort of model you're after, you want to think carefully about how much you can put financially toward a new-to-you ride. Luckily, there are many high-quality, affordable options on the market!

To set a realistic budget for your research, you'll want to identify the maximum amount you'd be willing to spend on a monthly car payment and go from there. A useful rule is to not spend any more than 20 percent of your paycheck after taxes for each payment. Once you've found this number, you can shop with the mindset to find a car that will help support your future finances.

  • Determine what 20% of your monthly income is
  • Determine the amount you can put down on the car
  • Consider the cost of taxes

3. Ask for a Vehicle History Report

used car checklist

It's time to start reviewing on-the-market models! When you do, one of the most important items to check for each used car candidate is a vehicle history report. Verified vehicle history reports, like those produced by CARFAX® or AutoCheck®, are incredibly useful documents that act as the key to the past for the vehicle they represent.

Vehicle history reports provide a long list of crucial information, such as the car's VIN, official odometer readings, number of previous owners, and whether it's been in any accidents. Having this information right up front and asking the right questions makes it easy to understand your prospects and choose the car that's best for you.

  • How many previous owners have there been?
  • What is the mileage on the car's odometer?
  • Has the car been in any accidents?
  • Is there any electrical damage?
  • What issues were found during your inspection of the car?

4. Start Used Car Shopping with Val-U-Line® Today

Used car shopping really can be simple, easy, and fun! Checking off each of these items will get you closer to the ride that you want and need, and Val-U-Line® is one place where you can find all three: a wide variety of high-quality vehicles all priced under $14,999, free CARFAX® Vehicle History Reports, as well as recent state and safety inspections in the books for each model.

We also offer provider perks, such as a No Questions Asked 3-day or 300-mile guarantee, to ensure this is really the ride that fits what you're seeking. Hop to our online showroom and find your future vehicle today!

Val-U-Line
used 2010 Honda Pilot
EX 4WD
Price $11,368*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2012 Toyota Camry
LE FWD
Price $6,885*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser
FWD
Price $4,985*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2009 Toyota RAV4
Ltd FWD
Price $8,122*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Laredo RWD
Price $9,787*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2014 Nissan Sentra
SV FWD
Price $8,997*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2005 GMC Envoy
SLE RWD
Price $4,887*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2009 Toyota Camry
SE FWD
Price $7,219*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2009 Pontiac G8
GT RWD
Price $10,999*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2011 Hyundai Sonata
LIMITED FWD
Price $7,998*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2001 Nissan Pathfinder
SE RWD
Price $6,900*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2014 Nissan Juke
S FWD
Price $9,997*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2011 Honda Civic Cpe
EX FWD
Price $7,100*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 2013 Ford Edge
Limited NAV FWD
Price $11,999*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal
used 1995 Buick LeSabre
Limited 2WD
Price $1,787*
* Plus tax, license, registration and fees
View This Deal