multiple seriousity on Fri, 14 Dec 2001 21:00:25 +0100

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Re: [PLUG] [OT] buy a second-hand car (From Paris To Philly)

On Fri, 14 Dec 2001, christophe [iso-8859-1] barbé wrote:
> My first question is about car resellers. What's the best place to look
> for second-hand cars?
> Are there some tricks that I should know before buying a car in the US
> (being a french) ? 
> What are the most common car insurance companies ?
> PS: I will be off-line from Monday to ... a few days later (I hope). 

My advice:

don't buy a second-hand car from a dealership, buy it from an individaul
(check the various local papers)  of course this takes time to find the
right one, but depending on how good you are and how much you know you c
get things narrowed down with just a few papers and the telephone. . 

when you do go to see a few cars that you are very interested in,
negotiate with them to take the car with you or to let you take the car to
the AAA Diagnostic Clinic in Broomall, PA -- for about $100
(nonmember) they will tell you EXACTLY what is wrong or right with the
car... all they do is diagnostics so they have no reason to lie or
anything.. you can negotiate with the person maybe to split the cost with
you, if you turn out to not take the car, they get a copy of the
diagnostic report to show the next potential buyers... 
you can find out all about it at:

also, I don't know how long you plan on staying tin the US.. or how much
money you have to spend (or if its a big deal for you or not..) if you're
not staying long, being unsure about the car isnt such a big deal cause if
you're only going to stay a year or two, it will probably last you, but if
you're planning on staying longer... 

also, try to take advantadge of the resources you have... do you have
insurance in your home country? ask your current insurance company about
U.S. insurance issues, they may be willing to cover youfor a short period
of time while you are first here, or may have advice for you, or a sister
company here.. 

another thing, mayb consider calling the french embassy or looking up some
sort of cultural association for advice an/or networking.

also considerations are where are you living and where is your job... if
you're choosing to live downtown you may not need to buy a car right away
(or at all?) parking in downtown philly is a pain in the backside..

also, your driving record.. is it good? is there any way to get a copy of
your driving record (in other words something from the license issuing
authority/police there that might state any record of accidents, tickets,
driving history or lack thereof? I dont know what sort of ability they
have to check foreign records, or how they treat foreign drivers, but it
doesn't hurt to be prepared ... if it can save you a little bit in the
long run.. once you're here you cant go back and get a copy) 

and dont forget... you have the best tool you could possibly have to
research this stuff in advance... the web!
(this actually leaves out a lot, like statefarm, etc..)

Know what it's worth!! by all means, go knowing what it's worth..

know more about the SPECIFIC car you're interested in:
(its not perfect and can be missing a lot, but if it's there, it's

thats about it from my hat..

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