Age vs Mileage – Which is More Important for a Used Car?

Car dashboard showing mileage

When it comes to buying a used car, age and mileage are two of the key considerations which will affect both the condition of the vehicle and its price tag – as well as your decision whether to seal the deal or not. But is used car mileage more important than age, or vice versa? The answer isn’t quite as simple as either of those options.

What’s in a number?

As key indicators of how far through its lifespan a vehicle is, age and mileage are both important points to consider when weighing up whether to buy a used car or not. However, they’re both entirely relative.

For example, a 10-year-old car with 100,000 miles on the clock could be in far better shape than a five-year-old one with half that mileage, if the owner has been more assiduous in their maintenance of the vehicle. Similarly, a car that has been used mostly on motorways and for long-distance journeys is likely to suffer fewer problems than one which has spent the majority of its life in the stop-start traffic of a busy city.

With that in mind, it’s important to look at the car’s condition, service record and list of previous owners before making a decision. Used car mileage and age are both useful indicators of its value – but with no context, they can only tell you so much.

What’s the best age to buy a used car?

Following on from all of the points discussed above, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The best age to buy a used car will vary from vehicle to vehicle, with the car’s previous history a far bigger factor in whether it represents a sensible purchase or not.

However, it may be helpful to consult some statistics to inform your decision. According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders (SMMT), the average age of a used car at the time of scrappage was 13.9 years in 2015 in the UK. The average age of a used car on the road, meanwhile, was 7.8 years.  

With that in mind, it makes sense to steer clear of cars over eight years old, since you’ll be buying one above the average age. Generally speaking, buying a second-hand car that is under five years old is likely to stand you in good stead for many years. Of course, an older model will almost certainly be significantly cheaper, while there are definitely good deals to be had even with cars that are in double figures.

Do your homework

Taking all of that information into account, the simple answer to the question posited in the title of this article is that neither age nor mileage is more important than each other in isolation. Instead, each will have a bearing on the car’s overall condition, but that condition must take pride of place when it comes to making a final decision when you’re buying a car or looking to finance a used car online.

Don’t rush into any deals, make sure you do your due diligence and research a car thoroughly before you sign on the dotted line. Sticking to that advice will ensure you avoid any nasty surprises and keep you on the straight and narrow when it comes to buying your next vehicle.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

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£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

What to Check When Buying a Used Car

Searching for a second-hand car can prove to be a challenging task, especially if you don’t know your head gaskets from your gearbox transmission fluid. Of course, the fact that used car salesmen have long carried a reputation for exaggerating the assets at their disposal doesn’t make the task any more appealing. But thankfully the automotive world has come a long way since then. What's more, there are key things to check when buying a used car that will make your experience easier.

Nowadays, you can conduct a significant amount of research online, long before you set foot in a dealership forecourt or clap eyes on the vehicle in question. With a wealth of information at your fingertips, including 360° images of the interior and exterior, a full history of its past performance and user reviews from other owners of the same make and model, you’re better equipped than ever before to land yourself a bargain. You can even find used car finance easily online to help you fund your purchase!

Having said all that, there’s still no substitute for giving the tyres a good kick and running your eye over the vehicle in person before you sign on the dotted line. For anyone unsure about which questions to ask and which tell-tale signs to look out for, here’s a quick reminder of what to check when buying a used car from a dealership, at an auction or via a private seller. 

Buying a used car checklist

With so many things to keep in mind, it’s a good idea to separate out each area of concern into a different category. This can greatly simplify the process and make it far easier to remember everything when compiling a buying a used car checklist. You should make sure you cover the following areas:

Under the bonnet

As the beating heart of any vehicle, the engine should always come in first on your list of what to check when buying a used car. Make sure there are no signs of leakages in and around the engine, which could come from the oil, the coolant, the transmission fluid or the power steering fluid. It’s also a good idea to leave the engine running and inspect the tailpipe for discoloured emissions, which can indicate an issue.

In the driving seat

Get into the driver’s seat and switch the ignition on, which will allow you to instantly see on the dashboard whether any warning lights come on. While you’re here, you can also confirm the car’s mileage and try out all signalling lights, as well as satisfy yourself that all the climate controls, windows, central locking system, infotainment panel and any other electronics are all in good working order.

On the road 

It should really go without saying, but the number of buyers who finalise their purchase without taking the car for a test drive is quite staggering. Make sure you get behind the wheel and on the road to get a feel for the car’s brake response, clutch biting point and ease of changing gears. Any delay, resistance or grinding is a red flag that not all is well with the gearbox or brakes, both of which are absolutely crucial to the running of the car.

In black and white

Documentation is still an all-important piece of any car purchase, since it will not only enable you to see a detailed breakdown of the car’s past history including any insurance write-offs, but will also allow you to prove it is yours after the fact and help you get the car taxed when the time comes. Don’t move forward with any deal if the vendor can’t provide a service history, a V5c and an MOT for the vehicle.

On the eye

When buying a used car, check everything that the seller is telling you with your eyes and your ears. For example, dinks and dents to the exterior bodywork could point to a past accident they would prefer you didn’t know about, while strange sounds during operation might highlight an ongoing issue. Take stock of the car’s outward appearance, its purported age and the service history to see if they all tally. If they don’t, the seller might be trying to pull the wool over your eyes.

Safety first

Last but not least, it’s essential to make sure you prioritise safety every time you buy a used car. This means checking all the nitty gritty details of a car’s operational status, including making sure that the windscreen wipers, air bags, headlights, seatbelts and other safety features are in perfect working order. You should also verify whether the car comes with a spare tyre, jack or any other maintenance tools, as well as measuring the tread of the tyres themselves. Any tread that is less than 3mm will mean they’ll need replacing sooner rather than later.

Evaluate your options

Whatever vehicle you wish to buy and whoever you’re trying to purchase from, it’s important not to rush into any decisions. If you uncover faults with any of the items mentioned above, you can insist the seller handles it, negotiate a reduction in price or simply walk away from the deal. With eight million used cars sold in the UK each year, you should always remember that there are plenty of other options out there.

With that in mind, if you have any doubts about a used car, checking the market for other alternatives is always a good idea. Listen to your head – not your heart – and err on the side of the caution with any second-hand purchase and you can’t go wrong. As always with these types of deals, price is a major factor, but it should never be the defining one. Don’t plump for a substandard set of wheels just because they come at a discount price.

At My Car Credit, we make it easier to buy used cars on finance, so you don’t have to compromise on the quality of your purchase because of the up-front costs. To find out more, simply drop us an email at enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk and we’ll be happy to run through your options. Whether it’s a new car or a used one, we’re here to make the whole process that little bit easier. Get in touch today!

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
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Good

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£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

Is It Better to Finance or Buy a Used Car?

Used car bought using finance

For most people, buying a car – even a used one – represents a substantial purchase in the context of their normal spending habits. That’s why car financing is becoming an increasingly popular option among the British public, with 91% of new car buyers using a finance deal to fund their purchase in 2019.

Of course, your available budget is likely to be the biggest factor in deciding whether to finance or buy a used car. However, it’s not the only consideration you should take into account, with advantages and disadvantages on both sides of the coin. In order to help you reach a decision, here’s a quick look at the pros and cons of both options.

The case for buying outright

If you have the capital available, paying for a car with cash can be the simplest and most straightforward method of acquiring a new motor. After having finalised the deal and transferred the funds, you can drive away with your new set of wheels. There are no monthly instalments to pay, no interest to worry about, no credit checks to pass and no mileage limits to stay under.

While buying a car is certainly the cheapest option available to you in terms of the amount you will pay for it, you should bear in mind that the value of your asset will undoubtedly depreciate over time. That means that buying a car outright is not an investment you can expect to see returns on. What’s more, the fact that you’re paying upfront means that your choice of car is likely to be restricted by your budget.

The case for car financing

On the other hand, taking advantage of the various types of car finance available on the market can give you a much larger budget, allowing you to access a wider range of vehicles. This can result in a better driving experience for the duration of the contract. In addition, you’ll have a more valuable asset at its conclusion that will last longer and fetch a higher price when it comes to moving it on.

Meanwhile, utilising a car finance deal allows you to manage your cashflow far better. You can even use the money that you save by not buying outright to invest in stocks and shares, lay down a mortgage or build up a nest egg. Meeting your fixed monthly repayments will also reflect favourably on your credit score. Even better, you can dispense with the hassle of finding a buyer if you choose an appropriate car finance package.

Is it better to finance or buy a used car?

Ultimately, the choice of whether to buy or finance a used car will depend upon your own financial situation, the type of car you wish to purchase and the things you value most in life. However, there are plenty of very attractive advantages of using car finance which simply aren’t available to those who buy outright.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the car finance options available to you, or to make an application with My Car Credit, why not give us a ring? You can reach us on 01246 458 810 or by sending an email to enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk and we can take things from there. Get in touch today!

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

4 of the Best Online Car Buying Sites

Man sat at home shopping online for a new used car

Buying a new car was once something of a daunting prospect for many people, especially those who were in the market for a second-hand set of wheels. Limited knowledge of what goes on under the bonnet, alongside the unreliable reputation of used car salesmen in general, often meant a trip to a dealership forecourt was something that many people avoided like the dentist.

Fortunately, that kind of ordeal has become a thing of the past. The wonders of modern technology mean that the automotive market has, like many other industries, moved largely online. Nowadays, you can log on to any number of car buying websites to browse their available wares, peruse 360° photographs of the vehicles in question and even use car finance calculators to understand how much the purchase might cost you over time.

While this has undoubtedly made the whole process easier, fairer and more convenient, the sheer wealth of options out there can make it difficult to know where to begin. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the best online car buying sites on the internet today, along with a quick rundown of their USPs, benefits and drawbacks. And when you’ve finally struck upon the car of your dreams, you can count on My Car Credit to help you find the financing so that you can afford it. Read on to find out more about four of the best online car buying sites.

1.   Auto Trader

First founded in 1975, Auto Trader is the oldest and most popular option for finding a new car on the internet. Once a hugely popular print magazine, Auto Trader migrated fully online in 2013 and has never looked back. Today, it’s the biggest database of new and used cars you’ll find anywhere in the UK, with over 90% of its more than half a million vehicles sourced from licensed dealers and the remainder sold by private owners.

Auto Trader has integrated a number of handy search functions into its site, allowing you to narrow the parameters based upon size, fuel type, emissions ratings and cost, both upfront and monthly should you choose to take a finance plan. However, visitors should be aware that the default search results are ranked according to the fee paid to the site by the dealer, so adjusting those rankings is paramount to finding the best deal for you and not the best deal for Auto Trader.

2.   Motors

Motors has the second largest collection used cars online, though it does not stock new models and its overall listings still lag some way behind market leaders Auto Trader. Having said that, Motors has made great use of the available technology to create a site that’s incredibly user-friendly and easy on the eye at the same time.

With the use of clean graphics and an intuitive interface, Motors allows buyers to adjust their search according to a whole host of preferences, including things like the road tax that the car carries and the bells and whistles that it comes with. One slight drawback of Motors’ system is that the reviews left by other buyers on the site don’t always correspond to the image of the car in question, with reviews grouped together by make and model rather than individual vehicle.

3.   Cazoo

Cazoo is one of the fastest growing sites for used cars in the UK, with over 250 makes and models to choose from. Their USP is that they were launched by those with a vested interest in facilitating the process of finding a new car, which means that every vehicle in their online showroom has been subjected to a meticulous 150-point inspection, as well as a recent service, MOT and reconditioning where necessary.

Cazoo also pride themselves on promoting transparency and fairness in every deal they do, so you don’t have to worry about hidden fees or costs when it comes to signing on the dotted line. Best of all, they offer a seven-day, no-questions-asked returns policy alongside a 90-day warranty, giving you complete peace of mind that your purchase is the right one for you.

4.   Cinch Cars

Another up-and-coming star of the used car market, Cinch Cars are one of the best online car buying sites for those on the lookout for a second-hand vehicle with first-class quality. Each of the thousands of cars available in their database is less than seven years old and has fewer than 70,000 miles on the clock, so you can be sure you’re getting only the crème de la crème of used motors.

Like Cazoo, Cinch Cars also conduct a thorough inspection of each vehicle in their care, refusing to sell anything that doesn’t cut their mustard. What’s more, the entire process – from searching for your next ride to finding the finance to suit to signing the papers – can be handled online and you won’t even have to leave your home to get behind the wheel! That’s because Cinch offer a delivery service at the date and time of your choosing. Now that’s convenience.

Which is the best online car buying site?

To put it simply, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Each of the sites listed above come with their own unique advantages, meaning the one which is best for you will depend on your own preferences and tastes. Auto Trader and Motors both offer enormous databases of hundreds of thousands of vehicles, while Cazoo and Cinch Cars prioritise quality, transparency and convenience in their dealings.

Whatever site you decide to use for your next vehicle purchase, My Car Credit is here to provide the financing you need to seal the deal. We consider all circumstances – even if you have a poor credit rating or you’re a young driver – and we’ll give you a fair decision within minutes of receiving your application. Want to learn more? Give us a ring on 01246 458 810 or send us an email to enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk and we’ll start the ball rolling on your application today.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

Should I Buy an Automatic Car?

Automatic car interior

Manual cars have been the preferred choice in Britain since the very first motor vehicles appeared on our roads at the end of the 19th century. Although automatic gearboxes weren’t too far behind – with the first automatic transmission arriving in 1921 – they have never enjoyed the same popularity that they do in countries like the USA.

For those who haven’t tried an automatic car before, there may be some confusion over what the difference between the two is and how this manifests itself in the driving experience. While there is no definitive answer to the question: “Should I buy an automatic car?”, there are certainly pros and cons to doing so.

Pros and cons of an automatic car

Whether or not you choose an automatic car for your next purchase will depend upon your own personal preferences. However, understanding the advantages and drawbacks of an automatic gearbox can help you to make an informed decision. Here’s a quick rundown of the pros and cons:

Pros

  • Ease and convenience – With an automatic gearbox, it’s not necessary to concentrate on which gear you need to be in. Simply select “D” to drive, then use the accelerator or brake to adjust your speed. You’ll only need to use the gearbox again when parking or reversing.
  • Smoother drive – Since the gearbox automatically knows when to change gears, you’ll never have to suffer jerky transitions again. Stalling also becomes a thing of the past as long as the automatic gearbox is in a good condition.
  • Good for traffic jams – If you live in a busy town or city, you might find yourself contending with rush-hour traffic on a regular basis. Constantly having to use the clutch pedal can become tiring on your leg with a manual car – but in an automatic, you’re free to devote your energy and attention to navigating your route safely.

Cons

  • Less control – Having a manual car allows you to drop gears when you need to accelerate sharply, such as when you need to overtake another vehicle, for example. With an automatic car, that kind of freedom is not available.
  • More boring – For some drivers, switching gears is actually the most entertaining and interesting part of the experience. Removing that can make driving a more tedious task.
  • More expensive – Because they are generally less popular in the UK, automatic cars are often more expensive than their manual counterparts. That applies to both new and second-hand vehicles.

Should I buy an automatic car?

Ultimately, the answer to this question will depend upon your individual preferences when it comes to getting behind the wheel. If you prioritise comfort and convenience, an automatic may be the way to go. On the other hand, if you prefer to retain maximum control, or if you’re on a budget, you might prefer a manual car.

Whichever type of vehicle you settle on, My Car Credit has an extensive array of options online for you to browse, including both manual and automatic models. We can even help you to find the appropriate car finance to fund your purchase! If you’d like to learn more, feel free to drop us an email at enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk and we can take things from there.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

How to Buy A Used Car: 6 Quick Tips

Woman driving whilst thinking about buying a new car

Buying a car is by no means an easy decision – you are making a commitment to something that you will be relying on daily. That’s why we’ve come up with six quick tips on how to buy a used car – follow them and you should be on the right track.

1. Test drive the car you want

This seems like the most obvious rule you can think of, but it is staggering how many people don’t test drive the car they are looking to buy. You can look at a car for days and read its list of specifications until your eyes go blurry. However, without taking it for a test drive you will never know what it’s like to drive.

2. Pick your time

This sounds dubious but picking a time to buy your used car is a great way of saving money. August and February are often seen as two good times. This is because it’s just before number plate formats are changed, which is a quieter time for dealers. Also avoid weekends and aim for towards the end of the month – it’s more likely that dealers will be looking to make their bonus quota.

3. Make yourself a used car checklist

Unlike a new model, a used car requires you to look for some tell-tell signs. The main things to look out for are:

  • Mileage: Check the clock against the age of the car and ask yourself if there’s anything that doesn’t add up.
  • Engine: Ask to see the engine and look for any signs that there has been any undisclosed work or any leakages under the engine.
  • Overall condition: Check for any scratches, dents or marks inside and outside the car.
  • Test the gadgets: Make sure that every gizmo in the car is working as it should.
  • Check the essentials: Windows, lights, doors (including boot) and safety locks.

4. Always negotiate

It is worth bearing in mind that margins on cars are pretty tight these days. Be respectful of the dealer and do your research before you start asking for a discount. If you walk away from a great deal, you could well be shooting yourself in the foot. However, even if you’re getting a great price, there’s no harm asking for some extras or freebies. For example, subsidised aftercare, free delivery, even car mats or an umbrella all help sweeten the deal!

At the end of the day, if you love the car but not the price, you can always walk away – there’s will be other cars and if you leave your number you might even get a call back. 

5. Choose a good car dealer

Choosing a good car dealer is the number one, best way of buying the right used car. Essentially, the more reliable the dealer is, the less likely they will be to sell you a bad car. So, do your research! Look for reviews, extensive listings on their sites and their association with relevant authorities (e.g. FCA, RMIF). In addition, look out for car dealers who offer a warranty – always a major plus.

6. Conduct an independent report

If you’re still unsure about whether the car you are looking at is reliable, you can get an independent report. This should be a last resort, but if you are making a big investment in your dream car, you can get a report from The Motor Ombudsman. They are a government-backed body that deals with the motoring industry.

Purchasing a used car is a big commitment so we hope that our tips will steer you in the right direction and get you behind the wheel of a quality used car.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

5 Tips for Buying a Used Car from a Dealer

Car buyer googling tips for buying a used car on macbook

Fourteen hours. That’s the average amount of time people take to research the used car model they want. This makes sense to us: buying a car is one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make. However, the same amount of time isn’t taken to research the car dealer to buy it from, which needs to change. We believe the right car will always come from the right place. Read on for our five tips for buying a used car from a dealer.

Choosing a reputable used car dealer comes down to lots of things. However, to make things a bit easier we’ve outlined the five main questions you should ask yourself before making any final decisions.

1. Does the dealer have a strong online presence?

A good, functional website is a positive sign of a reputable business. Take a look around and see if it’s easy to browse and navigate – a disorganised website could indicate a disorganised company.

Secondly, search for information around the dealer’s reputation. Any reputable company will want to promote the way they operate and their previous success. What’s more, you’ll also get a good indication of whether their approach to doing business matches with how you like things done.

Thirdly, make sure there is plenty of information on the cars they have listed. For instance, there should be be lots of images of the interior and exterior, a detailed record of specification, previous owners, mileage, etc.

2. Have you read the dealer’s reviews?

Reviews can give you a good understanding of the overall quality of the dealership. In addition, reviews give insight into their previous customers’ experiences. It is a great sign when the dealer is comfortable asking for reviews and posting them on their website or social media platform. This suggests that they are passionate and confident about their customer service.

As well as checking the dealer’s website, it’s also good to have a look at their social media platforms. Since these platforms encourage interaction between customers and business, you’ll get a good sense of their customer service levels. If there are questionable conversations on their social media platform, that’s not a good sign.

3. How long has the dealer been trading for?

Selling used cars can be a tough business so many used car dealers come and go. Of course, this can be due to a number of uncontrollable factors. However, it’s also important to consider that well-established dealerships remain in the market for a reason.

Bear in mind that if you have issues with your car and it is under warranty, you’ll not be able to get a resolution if they stopped trading twelve months earlier! Therefore, it is usually safer to choose a well-established dealership.

4. Is the dealer a member of any industry-recognised associations?

Being a member of recognised associations proves that you are proud of what you do. What’s more, you are willing to be held accountable for your work. All reputable dealers should display a trade association member logo. Probably more than other industries, this is considered a must in the car dealership trade.

Examples of associations that are worth looking out for are the ‘Financial Conduct Authority’ (FCA), the ‘Institute of the Motor Industry’ (IMI) or ‘Retail Motor Industry Federation’ (RMIF).

5. What aftercare would be available to you?

Buying a car is a substantial commitment. You’ll want to be sure that you are safeguarded if anything should go wrong. That’s why we believe every reputable dealer should have some form of aftercare scheme in place.

If a dealer is willing to offer good aftercare services (such as MOT, car repairs or car servicing) you know that they are committed to looking after their customers.

What My Car Credit offers

We recognised how challenging it can be to look for a used car. We hope these tips for buying a used car help you in your search. In addition, we have our own network of approved ‘My Car Dealers’.

My Car Dealers have been vetted by us for their status with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which establishes their trustworthiness and financial stability. What’s more, we conduct audits to ensure that they are personable too. You’ll get access to an extensive stock list of quality nearly-new and used cars. In addition, you can be confident that you’ll get a wide choice, the best experience and excellent after-sale service.

So, put these tips for buying a used car into action today and get the wheels in motion for your next car!


Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

Buying a Car with Poor Credit – 3 of the Best Cars

Colourful cars lined up ready for poor credit buyers

Buying a car with poor credit can sometimes seem like an impossible task. Once you’ve been knocked back by your bank or other lenders, it’s easy to just give up and stick with the car you’ve got – or in some cases, no car at all.

Whether it’s through constant repairs to an old banger or the ever-rising fares for trains, buses and taxis, sticking with what you’ve got can actually end up costing you more over time.

The solution is to find where you can get a car loan with poor credit but also to find the right car. By choosing a car with a lower price tag, you won’t need to borrow as much. This means you’re more likely to get your finance approved or get a better deal overall.

Read on as we look at three of the best cars for poor credit.

1.   Dacia Sandero Access

Dacia prides itself on offering a cost-effective alternative to almost any type of car. The Dacia Duster makes the continually popular SUV models a little more accessible at less than £12,000, while the Dacia Logan MCV Estate boasts a whopping 573 litres of boot space for under £11,000.

If you’re looking specifically at price as a bad or poor credit buyer, you can’t go better than the entry-level Dacia Sandero Access. From the decent boot space of 320 litres to its impressive fuel-efficiency at 55 miles per gallon, the Sandero Access is a great all-rounder, with an even better price tag.

2.   Skoda Fabia

If you like the reassurance of a big-name manufacturer but don’t like the price tag that comes with it, Skoda Fabia is a great way to get the best of both worlds. We know what you’re thinking – Skoda is hardly a household name. However, as part of the VW Group, it has access to the same design and most of the same parts at the much-loved Volkswagen Polo.

With the base version of the Skoda Fabia from as little as £13,000, you can effectively get the drive of a Polo without the cost. With neat little features like DAB and Bluetooth as standard, this certainly won’t feel like a car for poor credit.

3.   Citroen C3 Aircross

Citroen is perhaps best-known for its iconic people carrier, the Grand C4 Picasso. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more current, the Citroen C3 Aircross could be right up your street. This stylish SUV combines the comfortable driving experience of an SUV with the convenience and functionality that its C4 counterpart has become synonymous with.

Its impressive dimensions provide plenty of space within, extending from spacious seating and leg room to the 410 litres of boot space. That’s paired with a 1.2 litre petrol engine which offers a combined fuel economy of 51.5mpg. The result is a car that’s not only good for buying a car with bad credit – at a relatively low £18,000 brand new – but also pretty cheap to fill up and insure.

New or used cars for poor credit?

The cars listed above are some of the most affordable new models on the market. These will give you a good idea of the best brand new options for buying a car with poor credit. However, it’s important to weigh up both new and used cars to decide which is best for you.

With a new car, you’ll get a longer warranty, the latest features and typically a bit more fuel-efficiency. However, with a used car, you’ll benefit from proven reliability and cheaper insurance. Crucially, given that cars lose a big chunk of their value once they leave the dealership, used cars come at a lower cost.

Given that the cost of the car itself is a major factor for the cost of car finance, that means you won’t need to apply for quite as much. The great thing is you could have it paid off quicker or with lower monthly instalments. Either way, it will make it even easier to stick to those payments and improve your credit rating over the coming months and years.

Securing finance with poor credit

If you’re exploring buying a car with poor credit, speak to the team at My Car Credit. We draw upon a network of 27 trusted lenders to finance cars for poor credit, so you can spread the cost of your new ride regardless of your credit history.

Apply online today or contact our team to talk through your options with no obligation.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

How Has COVID-19 Impacted Car Sales?

Cars displayed in a car showroom

Since the initial UK outbreak at the start of 2020, COVID-19 has affected our lives in various ways. People have had to work from home, many have been furloughed or even lost their jobs, and we’ve all had to adapt to a more remote way of living.

Needless to say, this has had some direct and knock-on effects for car sales, as this post will explore.

The direct impact on car sales

The initial impact of COVID-19 on car sales came through the forced closure of dealerships. In the first lockdown, imposed from 24th March 2020 onwards, dealerships were deemed non-essential and forced to close. This brought car sales to a halt, with many dealerships not prepared for non-contact and online sales.

Over time, car sellers have adapted their processes so they can provide plenty of information online and offer click and collect services or deliver cars to customers’ homes. That minimised the impact of following lockdowns, including the national one imposed at the start of 2021.

Knock-on effects of COVID-19

While the ability to buy cars and apply for finance from the comfort of your home has minimised the direct impact of COVID-19 on car sales, there have also been some indirect effects.

People being furloughed or losing work has naturally led to fewer people being able to afford a new car – or at the very least, they’re looking at more affordable cars.

Some borrowers may have been forced to miss payments or make late repayments on their loans, which will have a knock-on effect for their credit score. Fortunately, some providers have offered ‘holidays’ on loan and mortgage repayments, which has minimised the impact on those who have been affected – at least in the short term.

Post-COVID car finance

If you’ve been left with a poor credit score in the wake of COVID-19, My Car Credit is on hand to help. We provide car finance for poor credit score applicants, so you can still spread the cost of a new or used car. To find out more, email enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk or call us on 01246 458 810.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!

A Guide to Buying A Used Car Online

Two people searching online for their next used car

Online shopping has boomed in the last couple of decades, and car buying is no exception to the rule. Not only is buying a car online incredibly convenient, but you'll be able to search thousands of different makes and models, all from the comfort of your own home.

But what if you want to buy a used car? What are the differences with the sales process compared to purchasing a brand-new vehicle online, and are there any risks you’ll need to be aware of?

In this short guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know so you can search and buy your next used car online with total peace of mind.

Is buying a used car online safe?

More than likely, the very first concern you’ll have when buying a used car online is whether it’s safe.

It can be easy to focus on the negative stories you may hear about when browsing the web, but there is a perfectly safe way of purchasing a preowned vehicle online. Here are a few things to bear in mind:

Be aware of the dangers

While there are tonnes of great deals online, and many people have successfully purchased a used car online, there will always be situations where people can take advantage.

Only buy from an approved and reputable seller and be aware of online phishing. Anyone can put an ad out online, so do the proper due diligence to ensure the vehicle exists, and the registration number is valid. Sometimes, when the offer sounds too good to be true, it is!

If the worst happens and you think you’ve been a victim of fraud, the very first thing to do will be to report the issue to Action Fraud and contact your bank or building society to freeze your account temporarily.

Know your rights

Vehicles, new and used, bought through a dealership via ‘Click and Collect’ and ‘Click and Deliver’ fall under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. Buyers have a 14-day money-back guarantee to return the car if they decide they have changed their minds. This forms part of ‘distance selling regulations’.

There isn’t the same protection when buying from a private seller. However, the car must still meet the description of the advert and be road-worthy. Otherwise, the buyer may claim a refund under the Misrepresentation Act. The seller must also have the legal right to sell it.

It’s important to remember that when buying a used car privately, the buyer is responsible for ensuring that the vehicle is fit for purpose.

Do your research

As you would with any sizable purchase, it is crucial to do the necessary research into the product you are buying and check whether it matches the ad’s description.

If you are buying a used car from a local dealer, you’re given the freedom to inspect and test drive the car for yourself before parting with any cash. Where you cannot inspect the car, many dealerships and online dealers will provide you with comprehensive images of the vehicle along with videos and walk-arounds. Plus, you are protected by the distance selling regulations should a vehicle not live up to its description.

Be wise about payment

There are several ways to pay for a used car online, and there are different ways to ensure it’s safe, depending on who you are purchasing from.

When buying from a private seller, you should never hand over cash without seeing the vehicle beforehand. Reputable dealers and garages will always represent the car’s history, mileage, and condition in the advertisement correctly. However, if you’re unfortunate to come across a dodgy seller, it is comforting to know you haven’t parted with your money if the product doesn’t match the expectation.

Buying a used car from a dealer is much lower risk, and most will offer finance packages, allowing you to spread the cost across two to five years, dependent on the type of car finance you go for. 

Arranging tax and insurance for a used car

Once you’ve placed an order or made a successful bid for a used car, you need to consider the best insurance policy for the vehicle. You can browse prices on comparison websites while you wait for delivery or pick up the car and then arrange for the insurance to start on the day it arrives.

Since you’re buying a used car, you may be conscious of any rising costs. If this is the case, there are certain modifications you can make to your insurance to lower the price. These include:

  • Have a black box fitted to monitor and carefully set premiums based on your driving habits.
  • Pay all of the policy off in one go rather than monthly or weekly.
  • Ensure the car is parked on a private driveway or garage rather than at the roadside.
  • Put the car on a multi-car insurance policy.
  • Improve your credit rating.
  • Remove any unnecessary extras you may not need.

A used car will more often than not be cheaper to insure than a brand-new model, but you need to consider that the age of used cars can make them more likely to break down and need maintenance. Repairs could hike up the overall cost significantly, which is why research and inspection are so vital.

You won’t be able to tax the vehicle until it is in your possession as you will need the official licensing documents. But don’t worry, this is a quick process that can be done over the phone or online, meaning you’ll be out on the road in no time.

Is it a good idea to finance a used car?

A used car financing deal can be a superb choice if you are money conscious or wish to spread the costs over months or years. The exact length of time it will take to pay off the car fully will vary depending on your agreement with the dealer or seller, so there is room for flexibility.

The two most popular ways of financing a car are Hire Purchase (HP) and Personal Contract Purchase (PCP).

With HP agreements, the cost of the car plus interest is spread across a set period of time. Once you’ve paid in full, the car then becomes your property. PCP agreements differ slightly, with lower payments across the term but with a deferred ‘optional final payment’ (sometimes called ‘balloon payment’) at the end in order to own the car. We cover more about these two car finance options on a separate article.

To secure a finance agreement, buyers need to pass a credit score check, as well as provide proof of identification and any other requested car finance paperwork. You can also opt to pay a deposit up front, but this is not a requirement. To ensure you’re in the best position to get accepted, you’ll need an active credit history to show you can manage money responsibly such as an owning active credit card, having a mobile phone contract or being on the electoral roll.

Getting finance deals on private sales, such as auctions or online bidding sites, is much rarer and complex. Cash, a personal loan or paying with a credit card tend to be the more favoured choices.

Do you need further help with buying a used car online?

As long as you avoid the pitfalls and do the critical research, buying a used car online could be one of the best things you’ll ever do and could save you thousands of pounds compared to buying brand new. There are plenty of reliable dealers and sellers out there that make purchasing a stress-free breeze.

However, you might still want that extra hand understanding all the specifics of finding a safe dealer and calculating the finance rate payments. That’s where My Car Credit can step in.

Simply give us a call on 01246 458 810 or drop us an email at enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk – one of our friendly specialists will be in touch shortly.

For additional information, you can also explore our the hundreds of helpful blogs and articles we have created to support you in your car buying journey.

Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 14.9%, annual interest rate (fixed) 14.85%, 47 monthly payments of £204.69 followed by 1 payment of £214.69 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £2,335.12, total amount payable is £9,835.12.

My Car Credit is a credit broker and not a lender.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!