Many car buyers assume that it’s better to buy from private sellers than from traders, that’s not always the case but it’s important to establish which class of seller you are dealing with as early as possible in the negotiation, preferably before you go to view the vehicle.
Many traders are decent and honest people, they can add value to a sale by ensuring that the vehicle is properly presented and prepared for sale, and often are able to accept a vehicle in part-exchange which can be useful.
Its easy to assume that you pay more for a car when buying from a trader, that’s not always true because traders are often less likely to over-value a vehicle compared to a private seller, however they need to make a profit are unlikely to be selling a vehicle for less than market value.
It’s always good to start a telephone conversation with “I’m phoning about the car, is it still for sale?”, that way if the seller has more than one vehicle for sale they won’t know which car you are calling about and are likely to need to ask which car you are calling about.
A trader that masquerades as a private seller is to be avoided, above all when buying a used car you are looking for honesty. It’s not impolite to ask a seller if the vehicle is registered in his/her own name, or at least registered to his/her address, a trader will often say that they are selling the car for a friend if they are disguising the fact that they are a trader.
If a trader is honest about being a car trader then there is no problem, I have bought some great cars at fair prices from car traders and often find them to be value added resellers.