So you’ve made up your mind and it’s time to make a change. Whether you’re buying or selling a truck, there are lots of important things to consider. With this guide, you’re sorted… Bring on the trucks!
Buying the Best Truck for You
Know Your Budget
Before you look at what’s on offer on TRED, review your budget. We recommend the 20% rule – you shouldn’t be paying any more than 20% of your monthly salary on truck financing. It’s easy to get caught up in the maze of features and options, but trust us – there WILL be something out there that meets your budget and expectations. You may find our recent post about financing helpful at this point in the purchasing process.
Work or Play (or Both)?
If you’re buying a truck for work, you’ll probably have very specific needs. You’ll know about weight, towing requirements, must-have features and nice-to-have features. But, if you’re a newbie buying a truck for yourself, it’s likely that you have a few questions. It’s helpful to consider the following:
- Will I be using the truck for work and family life? Or, will I just be using it during family time?
- What do I want to tow and /or carry? Do I know the weight of it?
- Will I need two-wheel-drive, four-wheel-drive, or all-wheel-drive? (Helpful hint: check out our essential guide to traction).
- How many people do I need to comfortably accommodate? Will my pets come too?
- Is luxury one of my main considerations?
Aim High When it Comes to Size
Search for trucks that have 10% more capacity than you need, and you won’t have a problem. Don’t be put off by terms such as ‘light duty’ or ‘medium duty’ if you need to tow heavy items – the Ford F-150 is a light duty truck, but it has an enviable towing capacity. A quick glance at the manufacturer’s towing requirements will provide you with accurate information.
Don’t Forget Your Garage
When most of us think ‘truck’, we automatically think ‘space’. The right truck will give you the space you need to carry cargo and people. Remember that the cab size impacts on the bed length. If you have a large cab, you will have a shorter truck bed. If you have a smaller cab, you have more room to play with when it comes to the bed. If you want a large cab and a long bed, be prepared for the truck to be harder to maneuver and park.
Making a Great Sale
A Fresh Pair of Eyes
Ask a friend or family member to honestly appraise the vehicle and tell you what needs attention. Touch up those paint chips, give the car a thorough clean inside out and out (don’t miss How to Get the Most Money When Selling Your Car if you really want to impress potential buyers) and replace the mats if they’re looking tired.
Take a Trip to the Mechanic
Or, if you’re a savvy mechanic, give the truck the once over yourself. Check the following auto parts:
- Oil and oil filter
- Lights (front and back)
- Brake pads
- Battery and alternator
- Spark plugs
- Clutch (especially if the truck has been used for towing heavy objects)
- Shocks and struts (especially if the truck has more than 75,000 miles on the clock)
- Automatic transmission (towing can cause this to overheat, so it’s definitely worth checking if you have been towing heavy objects)
Get the Price Right
Of course, this is important whatever truck you are selling, but it’s absolutely vital if you’re selling a vehicle from the hugely popular Ford F-Series. Check the market price and set your price correctly.
Trucks are Not Gas Guzzlers
Some buyers are nervous about fuel consumption when buying their first truck. Reassure them that trucks aren’t gas guzzlers – fuel efficiency and technology have changed dramatically in the past 20 years. Share some stats about your vehicle’s fuel economy to show them that fuel consumption isn’t a concern.
Don’t Be Afraid to Show Off!
If your truck has the very best features available, make sure the buyer knows this! Share how useful you found the heated leather seats during that winter trip a couple of years ago. Let them know how much the kids loved the high spec infotainment system. Safety is a top priority for most buyers, so if the truck has a lane departure system, that’s a major selling point. Doing some research about your vehicle can pay off. Did you know that the Dodge Ram was named Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year no less than five times? That’s bound to impress potential buyers.