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A wise man once said this Singaporeans marry twice Once with their wife and once with their car Singapore is one of the most expensive places to own a car which is why many of us resort to buying second-hand cars But let’s face it Buying a good second-hand car is as difficult as finding an influencer who never posts about her travels It’s possible but rare While there’s lemon law to protect you as a buyer there are a lot of grey areas and while it helps a bit, it all boils down to this Caveat emptor For example, the law only applies if you find a fault within six months And the hassle of seeking a refund can be prevented Don’t say we never warn you ah Oftentimes, second-hand car dealers like to charge an admin fee from $500 to $1,500 Some people online claimed that if you’re good enough you can get them to waive it off If not, fight to get it down to just $500 I mean, yes, they’re a business and they need to make money but if this really essential, why is the range so big? It’s imperative to check and check and check when you’ve shortlisted a car I mean, words are just words, right? So, here are the parts to check when the car is not moving or the body, check for uneven colours or dents If there is any, that could mean the car has been in an accident and accident vehicles are generally not that reliable Also remember to check for rust because getting rid of rust is one heck of an expensive lesson because rust equal corrosion For the suspension, push down on the front of the car and see whether it rebounds more than two times If it does, there is something wrong with the suspension and the problems usually only occur after a few months For the engine, open the bonnet and check the engine Some dealers make the effort to clean it but if you spot any leaks around, you’d better sound it out A broken gasket could mean an engine overhaul soon enough Check the seats Now, this isn’t just for cosmetics reasons discoloured seats or carpets could mean you have a bigger problem like a leakage somewhere So, now that you can see whether the vehicle has been through an accident or not it’s time for a test drive Don’t just test drive to feel the air-con or the power Check these instead Make sure the brake pedal isn’t too spongy when you’re driving it If there are unusual sounds when you brake, sound out immediately It could be due to the rotors and trust me they’re way more expensive than the brake pads When you are driving, let go of the steering wheel for just a while and let it move forward by itself The steering wheel should be straight If it’s moving too much to the side the alignment is out or there’s some wear and tear somewhere As for the engine, make sure there’s no knocking sound Also, if the car is vibrating a lot when the car is idling it could mean that the engine mountings are worn out And anyway, this is the engine, so be extremely sensitive to everything because one small problem could mean an engine overhaul Never let the lemon law give you a false sense of security the onus is always on you As for the gear, when you’re speeding up or slowing down you shouldn’t feel a jerk as the transmission changes gear by itself If it’s very unresponsive, check out whether it’s just an old engine or there’s something wrong with your gearbox If you’re getting a manual car, the chances of encountering any problem with your transmission are much lower So, after making sure that the car is the best-est what should you do? If you’ve a family member or relative who is going to buy a second-hand car, and he or she lives in the dinosaur age where the Internet is a whole new creature altogether go persuade him not to trust his trusted twenty-years-of-friendship salesperson and instead, scour the Internet for the best deals While the intentions of the salesperson might be good he would only have access to a limited number of cars the Internet has almost the entire fleet in Singapore, seriously The tradition of going to a physical car mart to see all the second-hand cars belongs to the 90s If you don’t trust yourself to assess the car you send the car for a pre-purchase check You’ll usually have to foot the cost of the check, but it’ll just be a hundred or so which is better than spending thousands to repair the car, right? If the dealer don’t allow you to send it for checks then you know something is wrong There’re good dealers and there’re bad dealers but if you prefer to believe in everyone you’ll have set yourself a trap Let’s face it check out the Internet and you’ll see several cars being advertised as “family’s second car” You honestly believe there’re so many rich families out there who parked money in a car park? Sometimes, even the mileage doesn’t make sense The solution is not to believe everything that is said as sometimes, it’s not the dealer who changed the mileage but the previous owner Remember, caveat emptor This is a common trick used by dealers you see a good deal online and call them The dealer requests that you come down instead Once you’re there, you realize the car is “sold” or the price isn’t true Then the dealer will start to promote other cars to you You intended to get a good relatively new Toyota but get a lousy old Honda instead all at the same price because of that persuasive salesperson The solution to this? Be firm The car is going to stay with you for years Don’t let a moment’s folly spoil your years (and your wallet) Trust me, you can always get a better price if you can bargain effectively There’re bound to be small scratches, dents or even a small leakage somewhere use them to your advantage Ask for a renewal of the road tax if it’s expiring Dealers don’t just earn money from the sale, you know they earn commissions from your insurance and bank loans, too Dealers are affiliated with just several insurance partners so they might not offer the best price Shop around for the best insurance yourself sometimes, these insurance agents you find online will even give you freebies like a cashcard or petrol vouchers! But of course, if the dealer is good go ahead and buy from them even if it costs more I’m sure you’ll have one buying a used car isn’t like buying fruits from supermarket You’ll have to know everything, or else you’ll be “eaten” Your friend can do the checking for you and most importantly, you won’t feel pressured to put a deposit So, now that you know these facts do you know what to do when you’re getting married now? Know liao also no use No money

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