You Just Bought a Used Car. What Happens Next?

November 25th, 2016 by
tips after buying used car

Follow these simple tips to get the most out of your used car buying experience


Congratulations! You just bought a used car. What a great feeling, right? This is the point, however, when some people are left scratching their heads wondering what happens next.

If you financed your purchase by taking out a car loan, then the title of the vehicle goes to the lender. You don’t get the title to the car until it’s fully paid for. The registration will arrive by mail to your address. If you were lucky enough to be able to pay for the vehicle in full at time of purchase, then you will receive both the title and the registration in the mail. But they won’t come at the same time! Many people don’t realize this, and when they receive one without the other they have a mini panic attack, thinking something is wrong. Don’t worry, it’s standard operating procedure for each of these documents to arrive separately by mail to your address.

If you now have a car loan, please do yourself a favor and be sure to make each payment on time every time. This is your chance to make sure you maintain or improve your credit score! This is especially important if your credit is already challenged in any way because it can help you show improvement and reflect favorably on any future attempts to secure credit.

If you bought the used car at a dealership, please be sure to write up a review about your experience and submit it online before you forget all about it. Customer reviews of dealerships are a great way to play a part in improving the used car industry. We want everyone to know which dealerships are the ones that do it right and which ones should be avoided. Common dealership review sites include DealerRater, Yelp, and Google. Be open and honest about your experience, and mention the name of the salesperson with whom you worked, especially if it was a good experience. If you have bought your car from Auto City, please share your experience with us on our review page.

Check the owner’s manual for your car to see what the recommended service schedule is and make sure you stick to it at all times. You may not own this car forever, and when the time comes to sell it, you want to have all the service and maintenance records easily available. This helps you get the best price possible, whether you trade it in or sell it yourself.

If you have any problems with the car at all after purchasing it, get in touch with the dealership right away – don’t let it go. If there is any kind of warranty on the vehicle, or if you purchased a service contract, you want to see if the dealership will take care of the problem.

Finally, also check to see if there are any open recalls on the vehicle. You can do this by going to https://vinrcl.safercar.gov/vin/ and typing in the vehicle identification number (VIN) of the car. If there is an open recall and you purchased it at a used car dealership, that’s not where it goes for the repair. Recall repairs are handled at dealerships that sell and service that brand of car.

Now that you know what to expect after your used car purchase, we wish you many happy miles of driving in your new ride!