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    The Risks and Benefits of Buying a Rental Car

    Used rental cars are typically lower-priced and well-maintained, and therefore they attract a lot of budget-shoppers from across the US.

    There are a lot of “retired” cars to choose from, and if you are okay with the added miles or limited inventory, you can find some amazing deals for rental cars on sale from top companies like Hertz and Avis.

    Of course, rental cars overall have more wear and tear compared to regular used cars that didn’t have as much extensive usage and aqswas many different drivers.

    So, is buying a rental car the right choice? Before buying a rental car, carefully consider the pros and cons to determine the best plan of action.

    Pros of Rental Cars

    Rental cars, in a majority of the cases, are comparatively newer cars with advanced features at low prices.

    Although there are certain drawbacks to it, here are some benefits:


    You will get a rental car at a sale price lower than that of a privately-owned car.

    The rental companies buy these vehicles at bulk prices, so they have the margin to offer low selling prices.

    Most rental companies list everything on their websites – from the sale price to service details.

    You can compare the prices to strike a good bargain.

    Maintenance History 

    Another key benefit of buying a rental car is its maintenance history.

    Compared to private vehicles, a rental company invests more time and resources in the maintenance and upkeep of their vehicles.

    Most rental companies have strict policies about monthly servicing, oil change, and other maintenance tasks which ensure that the rental cars are in top condition. 

    Newer Models

    Rental car companies normally have the newest models listed for sale.

    As mentioned above, rental companies buy their cars in bulk, hence they keep the inventory moving continuously.

    This allows them to list lower prices as well as adding newer models for sale.

    When you opt for a rental car, chances are you will find a newer model with updated features at a lower price.

    Better Condition

    One of the most important things to consider when buying a car is its appearance, both interior, and exterior.

    While some private cars are in good condition, it is quite difficult to find these.

    On the other hand, rental companies have to keep their cars in good condition to attract buyers as well as renters.

    So, most rental cars come in perfect condition inside and out as they are frequently washed, polished, and cleaned by professionals.

    Haggle-Free Purchase

    Rental companies sell their cars at no-haggle rates, and some might also include additional bargains.

    Companies need to quickly move cars out of their fleet, which directly translates to lower prices for customers.

    Rental cars are already priced at extremely low rates as most rental companies evaluate the costs using pricing guides like Kelley Blue Book.

    If you have good negotiation skills, you could probably save $1,000 and upward when purchasing a rental car.

    Cons of Rental Cars

    Buying a rental car, though cost-effective, has some drawbacks.

    You must consider these before moving ahead:

    Lower Resale Value

    A rental car, no doubt, will cost you less upfront.

    However, it will also give you a lower resale ability at the end.

    You won’t be getting a good resale value on a rental car, mostly because the majority of buyers are wary of buying a pre-owned car that was also a rental car.

    Another reason is the sheer volume at which the rental companies sell these cars.

    To make space for newer models, they put out huge discounts.

    his means that it will be hard for you to compete with those sales when you come to sell your car as customers might prefer to buy a rental car directly from the source.

    Performance Issues & Warranty

    You can test drive the rental car before purchasing it.

    ou can even pull up the maintenance history and check the number of servicings the car has undergone.

    Still, none of these guarantee that you won’t face problems with the car over time.

    A new car will be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, but a rental car’s warranty would have been void by the time you buy it.

    he chances of you facing performance issues are higher with rental cars than privately-owned or new cars.

    Limited Inventory

    A rental car company only sells you the car.

    Unlike dealerships, you don’t get to accessorize your car with the free or low-priced accessories that come as a package deal from the manufacturer.

    You can obviously buy these later, but it would not be as cost-effective.

    Finding the Right Rental Car

    If you are looking to get a newer model at a lower price, buying a rental car might be the right option.

    However, you should remember that rental cars come with just a handful of options and add-ons.

    To pick the best rental car out of the lot, do the following:

    •    Check on the rental company’s website for all details. Most companies like Avis, Hertz, Car-Max, etc. list every detail of the cars for easy comparison.
    •    Run a preliminary inspection by test-driving. Check for any unusual sounds or visible marks and scratches.
    •    Ask the rental company for a vehicle history report. 
    •    Speak with the rental company and arrange for a pre-purchase inspection by a professional. This will help reveal any critical problem that might have bypassed the preliminary inspection.

    The Bottom Line

    Rental companies take due care of their cars and sell these cars at comparatively lower prices.

    They also offer a wide selection of newer models and are worth considering if you are keen on getting a value-for-money deal.

    When keeping these pros in mind, and watching the pitfalls, you can find a great deal buying a rental car.