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Used car buying checklist 

Find out what to look for when buying a used car and get your own handy guide to take with you to inspections.

Tips on buying a used car 

It’s always good to feel like you’re getting a great deal and haven’t been ripped off when buying a second-hand car. From planning and budgeting to inspections and finance, answer these short questions to help make sure you’re prepared for every step of your used car buying journey.

What to look for when buying a second-hand car

Planning 

Set the wheels in motion properly by understanding what you can afford and what fees, regulation and transfer requirements apply to your local state or territory. 

Great! You’re one step ahead.

It’s a good place to start. Get budget tips when you complete this checklist.

Great, you’ll be able to narrow your search down in no time.

Not a problem. It’s all part of the process. Keep going to find out more.

Gold star - you’ve already completed an important part of the process.

You’ve come to the right place. Find out more when you complete your checklist.

Impressive! Not everyone remembers this part. Keep going to the next step.

That’s okay! Get all the relevant links when you finish the checklist.

Shortlisting

Start searching and shortlisting your next car. Consider the must-haves, the absolute deal breakers and what type of car will suit your lifestyle.

Well done. You’re making good progress on your used car buying journey.

All good. We can help you with that.

Awesome. The planet thanks you.

Okay. Bear in mind it can save you money (and the world) over time. Find out more at the end of the checklist.

Good stuff. You sound ready to move onto the next step.

Find out more about buying through a car dealer, auction or private sale when you finish the checklist.

You’ve already completed a PPSR check? Good job.

Complete a PPSR check to make sure there are no registered securities on the car.

Inspections and test-driving  

Now for the fun, and very important, part. Know exactly what to ask and what to look for when inspecting a second-hand car.

Great. Use this list of inspection questions to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything.

That’s okay. Use this list of inspection questions to help get you started.

Very good. Does it match with our handy inspection checklist?

Not a problem. Use the handy inspection checklist packed full of tips help you out.

You’re ready to inspect and test drive the car!

Have you arranged a date and time with the seller yet? Before you go, check out what experienced buyers and industry experts look for when inspecting a car. Download your own inspection checklist to take with you on the day.

 Download inspection checklist

Buying the Car

Feel confident in negotiating a fair price for the vehicle you’ve found.

Impressive! Don’t miss out on these negotiation tips to get yourself a good deal.

No problem. When you’re ready, consider these negotiation tips to help you get a great deal.

Payment and paperwork

All that’s left to do is finalise your finances, complete all the admin and you’ll be on the road in no time.  

You’re on the home stretch. Did you know that Suncorp Bank offers personal loans?

If you’re considering finance, see whether a Suncorp Personal Loan could be right for you.

Discover Interest Rates for Suncorp Personal Loans

Great! Registering the change of ownership with your state or territory’s road authority is a big one! Don’t forget to transfer your e-tags and permits too.

Not a problem. Get all the relevant links to your state or territory’s road authority when you finish the checklist. Don’t forget to transfer your e-tags and permits too.

We think that’s a good decision! Did you have a look at the offers and benefits available to eligible customers through Suncorp Insurance‘s range of car insurance and CTP products?

See Suncorp Insurance‘s range of products if you’re looking for CTP, Third Party or Compulsory Car Insurance.

You’ve completed the used car buying checklist

See exactly what you know about buying a second-hand car and which steps are left to complete by using our useful resources below. 

Planning


 I know my budget limit

 I don't know my budget limit

 I know what type of car I can afford with my budget

 I don't know what type of car I can afford with my budget

 I have considered my car finance or extra costs like insurance

 I haven't considered my car finance or extra costs like insurance

 I have checked the fees and regulations that apply in my state or territory

 I haven't checked the fees and regulations that apply in my state or territory

Shortlisting


 I have a shortlist

 I don't have a shortlist

 I have researched the running costs and environmental factors like fuel consumption or emission ratings

 I haven't researched the running costs and environmental factors like fuel consumption or emission ratings

 I know where to buy a second-hand car from

 I don't know where to buy a second-hand car from

 I have checked the car is debt-free

 I haven't checked the car is debt-free

Inspections and test-driving


 I know what to ask the seller or dealer about the car

 I don't know what to ask the seller or dealer about the car

 I know what to look for and check when I inspect the car

 I don't know what to look for and check when I inspect the car

Buying the car


 I am ready to make an offer on the car

 I'm not ready to make an offer on the car

Payment and paperwork


 I have organised my finances and agreed on how to pay for the car

 I haven't organised my finances and agreed on how to pay for the car

 I have completed all of the vehicle transfer paperwork

 I haven't completed all of the vehicle transfer paperwork

 I have arranged insurance for the car

 I haven't arranged insurance for the car

Useful resources

Here’s the resources in case you missed them.

 Inspection checklist

 Car shortlist template

 Personal loan repayments calculator

Looking for a loan or car insurance?

 

Suncorp Bank Secured Car Loan

Stay in control and plan your budget with a fixed interest rate for the life of your loan. 

 

Suncorp Bank Personal Loan

Help make it possible by choosing either a fixed or variable rate.

 

Suncorp Car Insurance

Enjoy driving with confidence knowing that your needs are covered. 

Other useful car buying resources

Learn About – Buying a Car

Buying a car can be full of complexity, especially if you don’t know what to expect. Having the right information at the beginning of the process can help you understand your needs and trust your choices. 

State/Territory information

Here you’ll find some of the common licensing fees. 

Check if the car is debt-free

Before the inspection, check that there are no registered securities on the car by completing a PPSR check.

Various products and services are provided by different entities of the Suncorp Group. The different entities of the Suncorp Group are not responsible for, or liable in respect of, products or services provided by other entities of the Suncorp Group.

Personal Loans are provided by Suncorp-Metway Ltd ABN 66 010 831 722 Australian Credit Licence 229882 (“Suncorp Bank”) to approved applicants only. Terms, conditions, fees and charges apply and are available upon request.

Insurance issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as Suncorp Insurance. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement before making a decision about this insurance. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.

All information referenced in the checklist, calculators and links is intended to be of a general nature only. We do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss incurred as a result of reliance upon it – please make your own enquiries.