This article was published on Fri 01 Mar 2019. At the time of publishing, this article was true and accurate, however, over time this may have changed. If you have any concerns about this please contact us

Buying a used car: how to make the most of your budget

Fri 01 Mar 2019

One of the benefits of buying a used car is that sellers and dealers are often fairly flexible on price.

Remember to do your research before you buy as the more knowledge you have about the car the better your negotiating position will be.

1. Get expert advice: use one of the motor industry publications such as What Car or Parkers to check the market rate for the model of car you’re purchasing. You can also compare the pros and cons of various car models such as fuel economy, ride quality and fixtures and fittings.

Consider using the DVLA’s vehicle enquiry service to see what details they hold on the car and the Government’s MOT history check tool to make sure everything is as you expected.

Once you have decided on a car to buy, it’s advisable to order a HPI check to make sure it’s not stolen or has any outstanding finance on it.

2. Consider the costs of running your car: before you buy a car it’s wise to get an idea of what it’ll cost to keep on the road.

3. MOT: cars over 3 years old need to pass an MOT each year at an authorised test centre. The cost of the test varies dependant on the vehicle, up to a maximum cost of £54.85*. Remember to shop around as you can often get a cheaper test price deal.

4. Car Tax: most UK drivers need to pay car tax, however some cars and electric cars are exempt. You can find out how much it’ll cost and about any exemptions on the website.

5. Car Insurance: car insurance can be expensive so remember to shop around for the best deal.

Ensure that you also review the benefits of the policy to ensure that it meets your personal needs – e.g. that it includes business insurance if you require it for business travel.

Don’t forget to check the amount of voluntary and compulsory excess that apply to the policy as this is the amount you agree to pay upfront if you make a claim. It’s wise to make sure these are affordable should the worse happen. To find out more about Police Mutual car insurance and to get a quote click here.

6. Breakdown cover: this will provide you with cover should the car breakdown. Some policies also include roadside assistance and recovery. You may already have this cover with your car insurance or packaged bank account, so remember to check before you buy.

7. Fuel: fuel is not cheap so it’s worth considering buying a car with low fuel consumption.

8. Servicing & repairs: getting a car serviced regularly can save you money in the long run and make sure that the car runs efficiently. When you are looking for your new car remember to check out the service history before you buy.

9. Explore your finance options: it’s important to stay within your budget, so work out what you can afford each month and how long you want to be making monthly repayments. If you are thinking about taking out a loan there are a number of different options available. If you are buying from a dealership, you may be offered finance direct from them. Alternatively, arranging credit from an independent provider separately from your car purchase could allow you to shop around to find a loan with the most favourable terms for you and negotiate on the price of your car.


  • Make sure you find out the total cost of the debt when comparing different loans and methods of car finance
  • Find out if there are any restrictions for paying off the debt early and what charges will apply
  • Check how flexible it is. For example if you want to sell the car before the end of the loan term

We’ve teamed up with Neyber, our trusted partner to offer loans to the Police family.

So if you’re looking to purchase a used car – Neyber may be able to help with a personal loan.

Rates from 3.9% to 18.9%

All loans are subject to status and acceptance by Neyber

  • Simple online application
  • Money could be in your account within one working day of loan approval
  • Fixed monthly repayments by direct debit
  • Make overpayments or early repayment of the loan free of charge
  • Neyber rated 'excellent' on Trustpilot

Representative example

You could borrow a loan amount of £9,000 with a monthly repayment of £222.07 over a term of 48 months at a 8.9% (fixed) rate of interest per annum. Administrative fees are £0. Total amount repayable is £10,659.56. This is equivalent to 8.9% APR Representative.

Important things you need to know

Police Mutual is acting as a credit broker. Neyber Limited is acting as lender for purposes of entering into a consumer credit agreement. Rates depend on loan amount, term and your individual circumstances and may differ from the Representative APR.

All loans are subject to status and acceptance by Neyber.

Please note, loans are not currently available for PSNI members and their families.


*correct as at March 2018 -

PMGI Limited, trading as Police Mutual, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England & Wales No. 1073408. Registered office Alexandra House, Queen Street, Lichfield, Staffordshire WS13 6QS. Neyber Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Financial Services Register number 718709. Registered address: 1st Floor, 3 Finsbury Avenue, London, EC2M 2AR. Company registered number: 08806631

Type of article: Articles
Category: Wellbeing

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