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Learn About the Vehicle Before Spending Your Hard-Earned Money for the Purchase

Thousands of people buy and sell vehicles every year. The process of buying a car is not what it used to be – consumers are more educated and focus on a car’s reliability, the model that meets their needs and how much the car should cost.

You might think buying a used car will save you money. And you're right. According to Kelley Blue Book, the average new car price in 2023 is $48,094, while the average used car sells for $27,564. Even if you buy a higher-end used car, it might have a lower purchase price than the new car you have your eye on.

However, if you're planning to finance your next vehicle purchase, there's one other thing you need to keep in mind. Lenders typically give higher interest rates on used car loans. Per data from, used car interest rates can be significantly higher than those charged by lenders who finance new cars.  

Prospective car shoppers should do their homework upfront.  Some key considerations are your budget, your needs, your wants and the quality of the vehicle you are purchasing.  Before spending your hard-earned money, it’s important to learn about the vehicle you plan to purchase as well as the individual or dealer you plan to purchase from. 

Did you know that in New York State, every automobile dealer must register with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and that a registered dealer must obey certain state and federal laws that protect your purchase of a new or used car, truck or other vehicle, including one sold as salvage;

Did you know that when you buy a used vehicle, the dealer must certify, in writing, that it is “in condition and repair to render, under normal use, satisfactory and adequate service…?”  The vehicle must have all safety equipment and emissions controls required by state and federal laws for the vehicle’s model year;

Did you know that most vehicles are also protected by manufacturers’ warranty? 

Did you know that New York State ranks among the states with the highest number of cars on the road -- over 11,000,000 – thus emphasizing the importance of the Department of Motor Vehicles and the Erie County Auto Bureau to adapt to the needs of the driving public. 

The core purpose of the Erie County Auto Bureau, through the NYS DMV, is to assist car buyers, provide guidelines for vehicle transfers, offer registration and licensing documents and implement vehicle rules and regulations throughout the state to ensure safe business practices between vehicle buyers and sellers.  

To assist new or used car buyers, my office has published an informative New and Used Car Buying Guide that provides a detailed and concise synopsis of the rules and regulations governing the sale and purchase of vehicles in New York State. 

In today’s car buying market, and with any major purchase, spending thousands of dollars for a new or used vehicle can be overwhelming.  The secret to getting a fair deal and a quality vehicle is to be informed.  A little research and awareness on your end will reward you with a satisfying transaction.

If you would like a copy of this helpful brochure, you can request one via e-mail at or call the Erie County Clerk’s Outreach Center at 716-858-8864.