Buying a classic car is a dream of many. Let’s face it, many vintage vehicles look a lot more interesting than most modern cars, which are for the most-part pretty uniform, so it makes sense that true car lovers would want to own an older model or two if they are lucky enough to afford it.
However, buying a classic car isn’t something that you should go into blind. Classic cars are expensive, and it can take quite an effort to find and purchase the perfect one, get it home and maintain it, not to mention expensive!
Of course, this shouldn’t put you off – you just need to ensure that you go into the process fully formed! Here are some tips to help you with that:
Choosing the Right Car
For some of you, choosing the right classic car for you will be no trouble at all; you’ll have long fallen in love with a particular model from the past, and you’ll be looking to buy one no matter what. However, for some of you, the decision as to which classic car to buy won’t be so simple. You’ll be thinking about how much it costs, the cost of maintaining it and whether it will represent a good investment or not. If that’s the case, you will need to research classic cars until you hit upon the right mix of a beautiful car that you can afford and which is more likely to appreciate in value than it is to depreciate.
How Will the Car be Used
One thing that any of you who are looking to buy a classic car will need to think about is how you intend to use the vehicle. For example, if you want to be able to drive it regularly, then you’re going to have to look for a vehicle that’s in pretty good shape inside and out, or if you’re want to show your car at events and rallies, the condition of the bodywork is going to be pretty important to you.
Be Careful with Your Budget
If you think that your budget for buying a classic car starts and end with the purchase of the vehicle, you are in for a shock! Not only do you have to purchase the actual vehicle, but you have to take into account the cost of gas, any restoration products, transportation and spare parts. This can make what seemed like a bargain buy a lot more expensive than you bargained for and it is why you need to look at the whole picture before you commit to buying any one vintage vehicle.
While you’re working out what you can and cannot afford, it’s important that you use reputable sources to see what the average retail value of the car you’re interested in is. That way, you will know what to expect, and if a car seems too cheap to be true, you can start digging into exactly why it’s being sold for so little. Of course, it will also help to prevent you from paying over the odds for the car you are interested in.
Check the Speedometer
It’s always a good time to check the mileage of the vehicle you’re looking at because, as you know, the fewer miles there are on the clock, the better condition the vehicle is likely to be in (although that is not always the case – do your homework). Of course, with lower mileage tends to come to a higher price, So if you’re on a budget, you should perhaps consider buying a high mileage vehicle AFTER satisfying yourself that it is in good condition and the price reflects the extra miles on the clock.
Inspecting used cars before you buy them is always a must, but it’s even more important when you’re purchasing a classic car which is likely to have a much longer history. To start with, you absolutely must check that the car you’re buying is actually owned by the seller, to ensure that it is not stolen.
Next, you should check the Vehicle Identification Number on the paperwork with the VIN on the cat. If they match, then all is well, but if they don’t, it could indicate that the vehicle is stolen, fake, or has been involved in a pretty serious accident in the past!
Go for Original Interior
It isn’t essential, but if you can, you should aim to buy a classic car that still has its original interior, including everything from the seats to the emblems. If you want your vehicle to be authentic and of as much a value as possible, finding replacements can be hard, so buying a car that has e everything intact is really a boon.
Examine the Exterior
When examining the exterior, you should be looking for things like dents in the panel work, rust, signs of welding or front and back halves that do not match; If you find any of them, you should be very cautious about proceeding. A little rust is probably fine, and can be dealt with, for example, but find lots of it, and your restoration costs will soar.
Take it Out
You should always insist on being able to test drive your vehicle before you buy it. That way, you can see how she handles and check for any major faults that wouldn’t be apparent when the vehicle is stationary.
Think About Delivery
If you buy a classic car in perfect working condition, then you may be able to drive it home if you’re buying from a fairly close location, but if you aren’t, you may need to hire a car transport company, which you can click here for more info about, to bring the car to you. Remember to add this to your budget.
Of course, you will need to insure your classic car before you can drive it and that should also be added to your budget. If you can find an insurance company that specializes in classic cars, you will typically get a better value policy, so try that first.
Now you know what buying a classic car entails, you can do so safe in the knowledge that you will make the right decisions.