Used rental cars are an excellent compromise between buying an older used car and buying a brand new vehicle. Used rental cars tend to have fairly low mileage, they're almost always less than a year old, and they're thousands of dollars less than a new version of the same car. Unfortunately, used rental cars also tend to be a little rough around the edges. Because they're commonly used and abused by their renters, they tend to have more scratches, dents, dings, and general wear-and-tear. But just because a used rental car has a little more wear, that doesn't mean it's a bad deal. Here's how you can figure out if a used rental car is right for you: 1) How long are you going to keep it? It's important for you to know how long you're going to keep the car you buy.
Used rental cars tend to have more general wear, so they don't hold up as well 5 to 10 years down the road as a privately owned used car. If you're looking to buy something that will last forever, you probably shouldn't consider a used rental car. 2) Do cosmetic problems bother you very much? While no one likes stains, smells, scratches, etc., most of us are willing to live with one or two. But used rental cars almost always have more stains, more smells, more scratches, and more dents than you'd find on a non-rental used. If you're sensitive to certain smells (like cigarette smoke), if you're a neat freak, or if you're just picky, a used rental car isn't a good choice.
3) Is your main concern just getting from here to there? Despite their cosmetic defects, used rental cars have a benefit over privately owned used cars. They oftentimes are sold with factory-backed "certified used programs." This provides a warranty with upgraded coverage, as well as lower financing rates that are typically offered when financing new vehicles. 4) Do you have no credit or bad credit? For those of you who have bad credit or no credit, buying a used rental car will give you lower monthly payments. Since used rental cars often qualify for "certified used programs," there are more financing options available for people with credit problems. 5) Rental cars are well maintained and tend to have few mechanical problems.
Let's compare the maintenance of privately owned used cars to that of used rental cars. It is better. What is the reason? Manufacturers lease their cars to rental car companies rather than make them buy them. Along with this lease, they require from them routine maintenance on their cars and documentation to prove it. Rental car companies usually choose to do the routine maintenance since their cars are under warranty. This means that used rental cars are generally better maintained and have less mechanical problems than privately-owned used cars.
Author Jason Lancaster, a car business veteran, created AccurateAutoAdvice.com. You'll find accurate advice on used rental cars and buying used rental cars.