There are many resources available for use when you are shopping around for used cars or used trucks for sale. It's a big decision, so let's take a look at ways to help you go in prepared.

Budget. Deciding on your budget in advance will help you resist the temptation to go for something out of your range, and help the dealer you are working with guide you to the right vehicle for you. For reference, the average selling price for a midsize sedan during the second quarter of 2018 was $26,336, with an average monthly finance payment of $462. Those numbers go up by about $20,000 for a truck.

Don't forget to include maintenance costs when calculating how much you'd like to spend on your car. Operating costs like gas and regular auto service maintenance to avoid car troubles should factor into your pricing when looking at used cars for sale. Check expert buying guides to get an idea for how much a similar car in similar condition sells for so you know what price range to aim for.

Auto Finance. Once you know what you plan to spend, you'll have a clearer idea of whether you can buy your car outright, or seek financing. There are many used car loans available; just be sure to avoid any predatory lending practices. A quality used car loan should help you build credit and ease the purchase while providing a reasonable payment plan.

Test Drive. The dealer will be happy to take a test drive with you so you can get a feel for how the car performs. With used cars for sale, the dealer will often provide you with a report on the vehicle's history. When out on your test drive, in addition to performance and signs that the car is in good condition, it's important to confirm that the car is a good fit. You should feel comfortable and well-positioned in relation to the steering wheel, dashboard controls, and seat belt.

Documents. When you have a settled upon a car and price with your dealer, there are a number of documents required to complete the transaction. You will need to ensure the transfer of title forms are filled out properly and ensure your registration, license plates, and inspection sticker are all ready to go before hitting the road.

Once all is set, it may be time to make plans for your next road trip!