Gently used vehicles are a great way to save on payments and experience the thrill of a newer vehicle. Learn how to buy a used car from a dealer like a pro.

It seems as though every year, car sales set a new record. Much of this momentum comes from the fact that people are doing better than ever in today's up-economy which boasts low unemployment rates.

If you're one of the many people that are in the market for a car, you may be asking yourself a couple of questions:

"Should I buy new or used?" and "Should I buy from a dealer or private seller?"

In our opinion, buying a gently used vehicle from a dealership should be your aim as this buying combo affords you both value and safety.

Below, we walk you through how to buy a used car from a dealer to ensure that you can walk away with the best possible deal.

1. Know Your Target Price

Before you step foot on a dealership's lot, you have to know how much you're willing to spend. Not having a price in mind when car shopping is a recipe for disaster since many dealerships will try to talk you into purchasing things that may be outside of your price range.

Coming up with a price target is as simple as understanding how much you can afford in the way of a monthly car payment and ensuring that a prospective vehicle's loan falls under that number.

2. Visit Multiple Dealerships

Don't have your heart set on a single dealership. If you do, you're going to miss out on deals.

The day that you're going to go car shopping, plan on visiting multiple businesses that have websites like which share corporate values, inventory, and prices.

Only cut your search short if you're given a knockout offer.

3. Test Drive Any Car You're Considering

No matter how good a car looks, you're going to want to take it out on the road to ensure that it doesn't have any hidden quirks.

Any reputable dealer will allow you to test drive their cars. If a dealership is skeptical about allowing you to take their car out, find another dealer.

Pro Tip: Be sure that you're insured before test driving a car. If you crash a car that you're testing without insurance, you may find yourself in financial trouble.

4. Negotiate

This is probably the scariest part of the how to buy a used car from a dealer process. If you like the car that you test drove, we highly recommend asking if there's wiggle room in the price.

Chances are, if you ask for a few hundred dollars off or waived closing costs, your dealer will accommodate you if the car has been sitting on their lot for a while.

5. Close The Deal

At this point, all that's left to do is close the deal.

Be sure that your dealer accepts the financing that you've pre-arranged or is prepared to offer your financing. Then, ask for the vehicle's history report to ensure its title is clean.

If everything checks out, decline add-ons, sign papers and enjoy!

Wrapping up How to Buy a Used Car From a Dealer

Stepping through the how to buy a used car from a dealer process might seem tricky. If you exercise our advice though, we're confident that your experience will go smoothly.

For more tips aimed at crushing life's biggest questions, browse more of the content on our site today!