Buying a used car in Perth

January, 2022

Buying a car is a big investment for most people. It is normally the second biggest purchase you will make, after a house.

How do you know what make and model to purchase? How much can you afford? And where should you buy your next car from?

Buying a used car in Perth can be a daunting process, but it doesn’t need to be. If you are in the market to buy a used vehicle, use our checklist to help guide you through the car buying process.


First off, set your budget to what you can comfortably afford. Will you be financing the vehicle or paying in cash? If you are going to use car finance, use Carz4u’s handy car loan calculator to see how much your weekly repayments will be and whether or not those repayments will fit within your budget. Some makes and models will cost more to service and insure than others, so remember to factor vehicle maintenance and insurance costs into your budget.


Now that you know your budget, it is time to research what makes and models will be suitable to your lifestyle. What is the primary purpose of your new car? Driving around your ever-expanding family? Transporting your work tools? Towing a boat or caravan? Or just short trips to the shop? Once you know what you need and want from a car, you can research what vehicles will be suitable and fit within your budget. There are plenty of informative car review sites that go in-depth about the pros and cons of thousands of different cars and will help narrow down the list of potential options.

Where to buy

Most sellers will advertise their vehicles online for potential buyers to view and schedule a test drive or viewing. This makes it easy to find the right car, but how do you know who you should buy from? There are a couple of different options as to where you can buy a car in Perth.

Option one is to buy from a private seller. This can mean you get a slightly better deal as private sellers don’t have dealership overhead costs but then leaves you without the protection of warranty and consumer rights if something were to go wrong. You should also be careful to check the vehicle’s history and PPSR. Both the seller and buyer need to complete vehicle transfer papers and submit them to the Department of Transport to transfer the vehicle ownership.

Option two is to buy from a dealership or used car yard. Some people try to avoid dealerships as they are not interested in trying to negotiate with salespeople over the vehicle purchase price. This is where Carz4u is a great option as being a fixed-price dealership, the need for back-and-forth haggling has been removed. Carz4u does not sell ex-mine site or ex-rental vehicles so you also have the peace of mind that you are buying a vehicle that hasn’t had a “tough life”.

The benefit of buying from a reputable dealer is that you have multiple makes and models in one place, all of the paperwork is done for you, you have the peace-of-mind of statutory and extended warranty and they can even arrange car finance, tint, and paint protection for you, making the whole purchasing process quick and stress-free.

Test drives

So, you have narrowed down your choice to one or more cars. Now it is time to see if the vehicle fits your needs by physically checking and driving it. Test drives are important as it allows you to sit in the vehicle and make sure you feel comfortable in everyday use, such as the seating, steering wheel, and mirror positions can be adjusted to suit you. Check it is easy to hop in and out of the car, make sure any car seats fit in the rear seats, or that children have enough space, and make sure the boot has enough space for your pram or any luggage you normally have with you. Then take the car for a test drive, try to go on local roads and a highway to get to higher speeds. For a more in-depth list, read our test drive checklist.

Vehicle checks

You have found the one!! As mentioned previously, it is wise to perform a PPSR check on your chosen vehicle to make sure it has never been written off, stolen, or has an encumbrance from a finance company for money owing. You can do a PPSR check online, all you need is the vehicle VIN and registration number.

Don’t forget to check the vehicle’s service logbook to make sure it has had all of its scheduled services. Missed services can mean any new car warranty is voided. Another costly mistake can be not checking how many keys the vehicle has – try to get two keys otherwise you could end up with hefty replacement costs.

If you don’t have any “car knowledge” it can help your peace of mind by getting an independent third-party inspection. Qualified mechanics will examine the car’s mechanical performance, exterior, and interior and provide a detailed report to you.


If you are upgrading or downsizing your current vehicle, most of the time you will need to sell it. You can sell your car privately, but then you have to deal with the hassle of strangers coming to your house and wanting to test drive or haggle on price. Selling your car in Perth can be quick and easy if you use a reputable dealer such as Carz4u. At Carz4u, our high turnover means we can pay top dollar prices for quality late-model cars, utes, SUVs, and 4x4s, plus we can arrange to pay out any existing finance you may owe on your trade-in.


If you are happy with the vehicle, your trade-in figure, and any finance repayments, it is time to buy! It can be daunting to commit but if you have followed our guide above, it won’t be. Purchasers have often missed out on their chosen vehicle by taking too long to decide, so consider placing a deposit so you don’t miss out.

If you are purchasing from a dealership, they will have a vehicle contract for you to sign which stipulates the statutory warranty that may come with the car and the requirements to transfer the vehicle into your name. Most of the time, you can pay any government stamp duty and transfer fees directly to the dealer, and they will take care of this for you.

If you are purchasing privately, the seller will normally have paperwork from the Department of Transport for both parties to sign and submit back. You need to make sure all vehicle details such as VIN and registration are correct. You then have 14 days to pay your government stamp duty and transfer fees.


Today’s car has on average 30,000 individual parts so it is understandable that even the most reliable cars can have problems, extended warranties can help save you from large and unexpected repair bills that could occur.

There are additional options you can choose to add to your vehicle such as paint protection, tint, and insurance. These can be great options to help extend the life of your new car and even increase its resale value. If you financed your vehicle, you will need insurance before the deal is settled, however, if you pay cash make sure you insure before you drive! Accidents do happen and it would be horrible to lose your car so soon after purchasing.

Choose Carz4u – Perth’s used vehicle superstore!

Carz4U has hand-selected a large range of quality used 4WD’s, 4x4’s, utilities, SUV’s, cars, and vans. If you are looking to purchase a quality used vehicle, look no further! View our range of used cars, 4WDs, and 4x4s today!