What you need to know before buying used vehicles in Qatar
Buying a used vehicle in Qatar is not an easy task. It would be very exciting if you were shopping around for a new car, but not everyone can afford a brand new vehicle. Or maybe you don't plan to stay long in the country and prefer getting a second-hand car.
Either way, there are quite a few things you need to keep in mind while buying a used vehicle because it is far trickier than choosing a new vehicle.
Several expats usually leave the country during the summer and put their vehicles up for sale. This would be the perfect time to look around for a used car as you could take advantage of panicked sellers who are planning to travel immediately.
Qatar Living has a massive listing of used vehicles that you can choose from. Search for your ideal vehicle right away.
There are a number of factors to consider and getting the right valuation is not quite straightforward. Here are a few things to keep in mind while buying a used car in Qatar.
Check out the car during the day
Make sure you set up a meeting to check out the car during the day and not in the evenights. You will probably see any dents or scratches better during the day.
This will also be a great time to test the air-condition of the car, a very important feature if you are driving in Qatar, where summers can be extremely hot. Make sure the car has a sound air-condition or you will be kicking yourself later.
Test drive it thoroughly - drive it like you own it
Take the cars you like for a test drive. If you're an experienced driver, you will be able to detect any obvious problems. Pay more attention to suspension, ease of driving, noises from the engine, steering, brakes and gears.
You're probably going to be the owner of this car, so feel free to drive it fast (obviously not at crazy high speeds), make quick turns and go over speed breakers.
It will be added advantage if you can test drive on roads you know well. It is important that you feel good about the car before you take it forward any further. You may also consider taking a friend with you during the test drive for a second opinion.
Technical check up
This is the decisive part of your second-hand car purchase. The inspection will and should decide whether you should get this car.
You can take the car to any of the vehicle inspectors located on Salwa Road for advanced checks that may have skipped your attention. They will test the car for engine performance, chassis strength, transmission wear and tear, body paint irregularities and other major technicalities. They will give you an estimate of how much you will end up spending if you bought that car.
If you get a positive report, you may consider buying the vehicle.
Negotiate a deal
Once you've established that everything is to your satisfaction, negotiate a deal. Be confident of the price of the car when bargaining with the owner or dealership.
Negotiate hard for a discount, but do have an idea about a fair price that you are willing to pay.
However, if the dealer volunteers a discount that is too good to be true, then double check the car. If you feel that something is wrong with the deal, do not hesitate to withdraw from the deal.
To be sure, you can ask for a accident history from the Traffic department or the car manufacturer (if you have the car's chassis number). If the car sustained mechanical damages during the accident, you better withdraw from the deal right away.
Once you have made up your mind on the car you want to buy, head over to the Traffic department in Madinat Khalifa South (open till 7pm normally) along with the car owner. Carry your driving license or Residency Card with you.
Pay QR 200 with your debit/credit card to change the car registration to your name. Now the car legally belongs to you.
This process can also be done hassle-free using the Metrash2 app if the seller is a registered user. Once the ownership has been changed online, you can visit the Traffic Department and collect your new car redgistration card by presenting your Residency Card and the old car redgistration.
If the car has a valid registration, then car also has a valid insurance. You may change your insurance agent at the end of the term if you wish.
BEWARE: Don't get swindled by scammers
Most of the time, online car shoppers complete their buying process without a hiccup. However, there are scammers and crooks here working hard to get your money. There are some scammers on Qatar Living too so always be alert.
Here are some tips to avoid online scams and fraudsters:
- If a deal seems too good to be true, you need to be careful. If someone's selling a brand-new Toyota Camry for QAR60,000 then it's a scam because the retail price is twice as much.
- Never negotiate a deal online. Set up a meeting with the seller to check out the car yourself. If they don't have the car in their possession, it could be a scam.
- Never share your personal or financial information online (address, credit card details, pin numbers etc)
- If a seller asks you to pay via Western Union or MoneyGram or directs you to send your payment to an individual, chances are very high that it's a scam.
Look for a car with low mileage
Look for a car with a longer registration validity (This means his car was recently insured)
Make sure the car had no major accidents
Check if any major car parts are replaced with fake parts
Check the trunk for any missing tools or spare tire
Check all electricals: lights, headlights, power windows, stereo etc
Do a thorough test drive on highways and inside the neighbourhood
Did we miss anything? Let us know and we will add it to our list. Was this information useful?
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