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Things to look out for when buying locally used cars

By Benson Onyango | May 27th 2020 | 2 min read

Owning a car was once believed to be a luxury or self-actualization dreams. It was a symbol of wealth, and those who were driving one must have been from a very rich family. But today it is a necessity. I think it is cheaper and convenient to move with your family using a private car than boarding a matatu. This helps you to avoid all the disturbances and peculiar behavior of some passengers.

Some clients prefer importing brand new or partially used cars from abroad. They have to part with a large amount of money to do so. For successful importation, you have to associate with efficient and reliable people, or you end up losing everything to middlemen. Unfortunately, most buyers hate the longer duration, which comes with importation, hence prefer buying locally used cars or already imported cars.

Middlemen, who are the key stakeholders, subject clients to serious threats in the field, but since they are the key source of customers, they are highly valued by business owners. They fraudulently run the industry. They always inflate prices when selling cars to users. They may end up selling a car without initiating the online transfer hence subjecting the buyers to a very difficult situation of trying to find out the real owners in order to do the transfer.

Some buyers end up paying for the cars, after which they realize that the original logbook was used to take loans from other lending organizations. This may force the buyer to pay off debts before acquiring the original logbook. Others have bought such cars; after which they are claimed back or some auctioned.

Others sell cars after vandalizing key parts. They later sell the parts like a catalytic converter to auto-shops. The buyers will only realize this after using the car for some time; they are therefore forced to replace all the worn-out parts at their cost.

Some written-off cars are refurbished, painted neatly then advertised in online portals as accident-free cars. It may be very difficult to tell whether they are accident-free or not even with a close look. My friend once bought one without knowing. He noticed this when he visited a garage for CV joint replacement. All the repair was hidden under the computer painting.

Some buyers have raised concerns about receiving only one car key. The former owner may decide to retain some keys for their own personal reasons. Such buyers are always advised to replace the ignition switch so as to improve the security of their cars. Because of all these tricks in the industry, citizens are therefore advised to watch out when buying cars from people they don’t know, and all transactions must be done during day time witnessed by their lawyers so as to avoid falling in the trap.

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