When people buy used cars, they typically tend to buy them from private sellers, car dealers or other people in the motor trade (such as auction houses, for example).

These different types of sellers each have their pros and cons, and whilst it is certainly possible to pick up a bargain when you go used car shopping, it is an unfortunate statistic that a significant number of buyers end up buying lemons; basically, cars with a whole heap of problems, and usually ones that the sellers try to disguise in some way.

Buying a used car from a main dealer, on the other hand, is a much better bet when it comes to buying legitimate, roadworthy cars. Here are some reasons why I recommend you do this when you next need to buy a used car.

Fewer risks

Let’s say that you were in the market for a used Range Rover Sport. If you purchased one from an independent car dealer or even a private seller, you have no guarantees that the car was serviced and maintained properly, and comes with service history and documentation.

Buying that same car from a main dealer is less riskier, because you will know that the car has been checked over by mechanics that are properly qualified and have the skills and prior experience of working with that make and model of car.

This means if there was a major problem with the car, they would resolve it using genuine OE (original equipment) parts rather than aftermarket ones which are likely to fail in a shorter period of time due to poor build quality.

You can get some great deals

There is a common misconception by motorists of main dealers that you are always going to get ripped off when you buy a car. The truth is, as long as you are a savvy car buyer, and you have done your research before you go out and buy a car, you won’t suffer from this potential pitfall.

But that’s not the only reasons why you are likely to get a great deal from buying at a main dealer rather than elsewhere! As you may be aware, many people often purchase brand new cars from them under lease agreements.

A lot of those lease agreements tend to be personal contract hire, where the motorist leases the car for a period of time (usually two to three years), and then they simply hand the keys over to the main dealer and take out another lease on a brand new car again.

Because depreciation on brand new cars is extremely high during those first three years, you will end up with a much cheaper car that will have been properly maintained, and will usually be lower than the typical annual mileage of a car (i.e. 10,000 to 12,000 miles).

Better service if things go wrong

Main dealers are generally franchised operations from the car manufacturers themselves, so if you have a problem with your car you are more likely to get it resolved quickly and, in many cases, for free. But, if you buy elsewhere, you aren’t going to be as lucky.

Image via Flickr (credit: RL GNZLZ).