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How To Buy A Used Car From A Private Seller

Buying a used car from a private party can save a buyer thousands over buying new or used from a dealer. Here's how to get a great car and avoid pitfalls

Buying from a private party does come with its risks and inconveniences. Buying a lemon can end up costing a bundle, and searching for the right used car is not as convenient as walking into a dealership. But with a little effort, buying a car from a private seller can yield a great car and a sweet deal.

Why is Buying from a Private Party Better?

Buying a used car over a new one is a smart move because the buyer uses depreciation to his or her advantage. Buying a used car from a private party can be even more cost effective. Whereas a car dealerships main goal is profiting from the transaction, the private owners reason for selling is often simply to get rid of the vehicle. The private seller sometimes offers a lower initial price, and is open to bargain.

Finding the right used car takes some legwork. Try to narrow the search down to just a few models. Check Consumer Reports for reliability ratings and lists of the best and worst used cars.

Once youve narrowed your criteria, youll be able to do a more honed-in search and get a better feel for a good deal when you see one. Scour websites like Craigslist, Gumtree and Autotrader, and also local classifieds to compare year, mileage, and options on these few models. Eventually a really good deal will pop out.

Getting Preliminary Information About the Car

Email or call the seller and ask questions about the car. Has it ever been in an accident? How was the car used and who drove it? Heres a hint: better to buy a used car from a 60 year old retiree who drove it to get groceries than a 16 year old high school boy who used it off road. No offense but 16 year old boys are harder on cars.

If the preliminary car information sounds good, get the VIN number and pull the cars history at AA Car Data. Make sure its not a salvaged vehicle, meaning its been in a wreck, flooded with water, or otherwise deemed a total loss by an insurance company.

AA Car Data will also state the number of owners the car has had. Ideally youre buying the car from the original owner. Make sure the name of the person youve contacted matches the listed owner on AA Car Data. If everything still looks good, go to the next step: meeting the seller.

Keep safety in mind. Its not a good idea to bring cash to the initial meeting. There have been cases of buyers being robbed by bandits posing as car sellers. These are usually cases of online posts which are the classic too-good-to-be-true scenario. If youve done your homework on the cars expected price range youll know whats a good deal and whats a scam. If youve pulled a AA Car Data report, you have information on the current owner of record. Scammers and robbers will not give you that much information. Do your homework and you can avoid dangerous situations.

Meeting the Seller of a Used Car

The person selling the car is almost as important as the car itself. Emails and phone calls cant replace meeting the seller in person. One problem with car auction websites is that its hard to get a feel for who is selling the car.

The second you meet the seller, start taking mental notes about the kind of person from whom you are buying. Does he or she seem responsible? Does he or she seem to have a consistent income and able to pay for maintenance and repair costs in a timely manner? If you meet at the sellers home, ask yourself, is the yard, home and other vehicles in good shape or in disrepair? If the rest of the persons life is a mess, its a good bet that the car you are looking to buy was not taken care of either.

Admittedly, this is a lot of information to glean from a few minutes with the seller. But even a casual conversation during the test drive can reveal facts about the sellers work and family, the reason for wanting to sell the car, and lifestyle. All of these factors can contribute to a judgment call on whether the car was cared for.

Keep in mind youll be doing this nonchalant interview while examining the car. So youll have to do a little multitasking.

Checking Out a Used Vehicle for Problems

Don't be scared of by a few scratches, as it is easy enough to find paint for the car to cover the odd mark; but beware of more expensive repairs. There are some obvious signs of expensive fixes a lay person can look for. Its a good idea to use a checklist, and take good slow walk around the vehicle. Bring a magnet and test for body repair work. If the magnet doesnt stick to a part of the body, it has been in a wreck and repaired, unless its a fiberglass section of the body that is supposed to be there.

Dont be afraid to get a little dirty and crawl under the car and look for oil leaks. Look on the ground underneath the engine for oil spots. Take a flashlight and look for fresh, wet oil on the undercarriage anywhere. An oil leak is a nuisance and possibly difficult to repair. During the test drive, use all of your senses, except taste that is. Listen for funny sounds. Smell for odors like cigarette smoke or exhaust coming in the car. Feel with your hands on the wheel and feet on the pedals for delays in acceleration, stalls, sloppy steering, vibrations, or excessive drifting while driving straight. Look at the dash for faulty gauges. If everything seems right so far, go the next step.

Bringing the Used Car to a Mechanic

For about £100 you are able to buy final peace of mind. Find a reputable mechanic close to where you are viewing the car. It's a bad idea to use a mechanic the seller recommends; find your own. Schedule a time with the seller to take the car in. In one or two hours, the mechanic can do a bumper to bumper checkup to give you the confidence to purchase the vehicle.

Closing the Deal

The seller will want cash or a cashiers check. Be prepared to go to the bank with the seller to get one or the other. A seller may even be wary of a cashiers check, as this form of payment can be forged and take days to show up as a fraud. But if you receive a loan from a bank to buy the used car, encourage the seller to call a representative at the bank to confirm.

Bring with you two copies of a bill of sale, one for you and one for the seller. Both parties should sign each copy so everyone has a legal record of the transaction.

Make sure the seller has the original title and signs it over to you. If the seller has a loan on the vehicle, make sure the bank signs off on the title transfer as well, since the lender is the legal owner.

Once the sale is final, be sure to report the transaction to the local department of licensing. Bring the bill of sale and signed-over title to the licensing office. Be prepared to pay the sales tax or transfer taxes that your state requires.

Reap the Advantages of Buying Used From a Private Seller

Now that youve done the work, you can now enjoy the advantages of buying a used car from a private seller. Its true that buying from a private party takes effort. But when you pull up to an identical car at a stop light and know you paid thousands less, its all worth it.

Home Improvements: Essential Plastering Tips

Plastering is an excellent way to improve your home, but it can also be stressful particularly if you haven't done it before. If you're trying to smooth over your walls, why not give these DIY plastering tips a try? These suggestions should make the plastering go more smoothly.

Make Sure Your Wall Isn't Too Dry

If your wall is too dry when you are plastering, it's going to be hard for you to maintain control of the suction. The more control you have, the easier it will be for you to get this job done. Ensure that your wall never gets too dry.

Purchase The Right Tools

Having top-quality tools can really simplify home improvement tasks, take a look at the range available at It's especially helpful to have a durable, well-made trowel. If you're not happy with the trowel that you have now, you might want to look into buying something new. If you don't have the money for new tools, try borrowing tools from a friend or family member. You need a great trowel if you want a smooth finish.

Use The Right Kind Of Backing Coat

You need to have a solid backing coat when you are plastering. Ideally, you should be using two coats. For plastering, it's usually recommended to use a coat made from sand and cement. It's easy to use, especially for beginners, and it tends to work quite well.

Focus On Flatness

People that are new to plastering often get worried that the wall doesn't seem smooth enough. Smoothness isn't what you need to worry about! As long as the wall has a flat appearance, you should be perfectly fine.

Use Plenty Of Pressure

When you plaster your walls, you need to make sure that there aren't any holes. In order to get a flat, hole-free finish, you're going to have to use a lot of pressure. Use as much pressure as you can, and keep your trowel at the right kind of angle.

Take The Right Approach

Start out by ensuring that you have the right kind of finish. Check to make sure that your trowel is at the appropriate angle. Then, apply as much pressure as you can. As long as you take this kind of approach, you should be able to get the job done.

Don't Be Afraid To Get Some Help

Plastering can be hard work, and you shouldn't feel like you have to tackle everything on your own. If you need a little bit of extra help, you should see if someone can assist you. Ask your friends if they want to help you with your plastering job.

If you're feeling completely overwhelmed by the challenges of plastering, you should look into hiring professionals. There may be professionals in your area that will complete a job like this at a reasonable price.

There are a number of tips that can make plastering either. If you're planning on plastering your walls, why not give some of these tips a go? You'll be impressed when you see how much of a difference the right techniques can make.

The Value Of Curb Appeal

In most markets across the country, supply still outweighs demand when it comes to home sales. While the focus is often on what can be improved on the interior of the home, many sellers neglect the exterior of the property. Most buyers form a view whether they just like a house or not before they step foot in the front door. The work you did do to the kitchen or the accessories in the bathroom may be great, but by that point past due. If you want to increase your properties' value, you will need to also increase the curb appeal of your home.

First impressions make a difference when considering to sell your home. Improving the exterior of a home may not be as exciting as trying to figure out what to do with the kitchen, however in many ways it is more important. At first glance, you want your home to have a wow factor. Your curb appeal should with the condition of your lawn and then landscaping any trees or bushes near to the front of the property. If you have old, dying bushes near to the front entrance, they should be removed or replaced . Add plants on the front stairs, in the garden, and fresh mulch around bushes are all easy treatments which may have a return. If perhaps your grass is old and there are dirt and bare patches, you can either lie down some sod or start the seeding process months before your house is ready. Little things like cleaning leaves away of the gutters or hosing the driveway down may seem to be insignificant, but if a buyer feels like the house is home before they walk in you are already way ahead of the game.

Additionally to increasing the scenery, you should also look at the physical condition of the property. In the event that the roof is old and only has a couple of years left, you will get a good return on your money by upgrading it and trying to market for a higher amount. Buyers do not want to come out of pocket after they get into a home unless of course they are getting a good deal. If they know they are going to need a new roof within a few years, they will most likely use a low-ball offer.

In addition to the roof structure, you also have to look at the exterior siding of your home. New siding, new paint, updated trim, new shutters and gutters can all make a huge difference. You can start with power washing the house and see what kind of impact it has before anyone looks to paint or update the siding. Just changing the color of the shutters around the windows and doors can make it look like a new house. A new front door can also have a major impact. The front door is one of the first things that anyone notices when they enter a house. Address plaques or welcome signs are another option to add to the front entrance.

One other area that is often overlooked is the front driveway. For an area that gets used every day, it might make sense to make the driveway as appealing as possible. If perhaps there are cracks, weeds and other noticeable defects, bettering the driveway will increase your curb charm. Paving over a stone or rock driveway will make the house more desirable to a buyer . You never know which feature will attract or convert a buyer, most times it has to do with the outside surfaces of the property. Weeds in a driveway is one of the things that is very unappealing and does not take much time or money to correct.

There are many things you can do to increase the curb appeal of your home. Some of these things may be a little more costly than you imagined, nonetheless they can have a huge impact on your sales price. If you are wondering which items should be updated, ask a friend to look around the house and let you know what they think. This will provide you with an honest assessment and a good place to start. Spending time and money on the interior is important, but it wont matter if the outside of the house is a mess.

Benefits Of Shelves That Pull Out

Cabinets are useful because they allow you to organize your kitchen and house, but searching for things on a shelf can be exhausting. This is because you have other items in your cabinet that you have to get past, and this is why many people are using pull out kitchen and pantry shelves. These types of shelves are more practice and there are a number of reasons why you should get pull out shelves for either your home or office. Some of those reasons will be discussed below..

1. Easy to organize: Not only are diy pull out shelves practical, it is also very easy to organize your items on them. That is due to the fact that it is easy to access the entire area of the shelves without having to pull anything out or have any struggles. That also means you won't need to kneel down in order to find things, since the drawer will give you full access. The user-friendly shelves also make life much easier for seniors and individuals who are physically challenged.

2. Easy to customize: If your bedroom or kitchen already has fixed cabinets in it, they can be customized to have pull out shelves. You won't have to renovate the cabinet since pull out shelves can be installed and fit into pre-existing spaces. Your carpenter won't need to change the existing dimensions of your cabinets. The cost to customize cabinets for pull out shelves is also quite inexpensive.

3. Easy to clean: It can be a very daunting task trying to keep cabinet shelves clean. That is mainly due to the fact that people have a hard time reaching and accessing some areas of their cabinets. One thing that is really nice about pull out shelves is that every area of the shelves can be accessed, which makes cleaning them much easier. Some individuals opt for pull out shelves that are removable, which makes cleaning even easier.

4. Convenient: Having access to the entire shelf area makes it much easier to keep your home neat and organized. For many people, this convenience allows them to keep their kitchens clean and organized at all times. Pullout shelves also provide easy access to plumbing located behind the cabinet. Whenever it is necessary to de-clog or service the plumbing system, the plumber just needs to pull out the shelves to gain easy access.

5. Increases the equity in your home: The value of your home is also increased when you install pull out shelves in your house. Many prospective homeowners like having a house that is efficient (particularly with shelving) compared to older styles. It is also recommended that you make sure that when your carpenter installs the shelves that full extension rails are used. The rails should be firm enough so that they are able to hold 100 pounds at least.

If you are searching for ways to improve the value of your home, or simply make it more practice, then you should definitely consider installing pull out shelves. They come in very handy in bathrooms, bedrooms and kitchen. Find an experienced carpenter who can install these shelves for you.