Lakeview, Washington
9915 South Tacoma Way
Lakewood, WA 98499
(253) 777-0620

Should You Buy From a Car Dealership or a Private Seller? February 13, 2018

Lakeview, Tacoma
Should You Buy From a Car Dealership or a Private Seller?, Tacoma, Washington

Once you choose to purchase a used vehicle, you must decide between buying from a car dealership or a private seller. While both can sell you a reliable car for a reasonable price, you may feel more comfortable negotiating with a friend or purchasing a certified pre-owned vehicle from a dealer. Below are four factors to consider when browsing used vehicle options in your area, either from dealer or a private seller.

Purchasing a Used Car from a Car Dealership vs. a Private Seller


Most car dealerships understand the hefty cost of a new-to-you vehicle, so they offer financing options, even for those with credit that is less than ideal. This way, you can drive off the lot sooner with manageable monthly payments. Private sellers do not offer this option, but without the pressure of commission, they may lower the price to get rid of the vehicle. This may prevent the need for a loan.


car dealershipWord of mouth travels quickly, especially since the internet allows people to share experiences and leave reviews about dealerships. If the dealership has a good reputation throughout the area, you can be confident that the services and vehicles there are satisfactory. Private sellers don’t have the same reputation as they don’t sell vehicles as frequently, so you can’t research their credibility before a sale.


Title transfer, registration, and other paperwork will be completed for you by a used car dealership. While some private sellers will work closely with you to complete the paperwork, that’s not always the case. You might need to do research on your own and make sure the ownership is legally transferred to you.

Vehicle Quality 

Some private sellers keep records of maintenance and repair services, which means you’ll have an accurate idea of the vehicle’s current condition. If the seller does not keep receipts or records, you may gamble with your purchase. However, a dealership ensures that every inch of each used car is thoroughly inspected. If a part needs to be repaired or replaced, the dealership completes it. Many used car dealerships can certify pre-owned cars, which indicates that the vehicle has undergone inspections set by the auto industry. 


Are you looking for a quality and reliable used car? Contact Curbside Motors in Lakewood and Tacoma, WA. Their website has over 250 used cars, ranging from SUVs to trucks, and their goal is to make the car-buying process fast and convenient. They’re the South Sound’s largest pre-owned car dealership and they’ve helped hundreds of families secure auto financing despite bad credit. Visit them online to view their inventory, or call (253) 777-0620 to ask about buying your next set of wheels.