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Used Equipment

3 Ways To Purchase Used Construction Equipment

Buying used construction equipment is an attractive option for many reasons. You can search for the exact make and model of construction equipment you need at variety of price points. Plus, with the increase in available aftermarket service agreements you can reduce the risk of purchasing pre-owned equipment.

Here are some pros and cons to consider if you’re in the market for used construction equipment.

Man standing next to John Deere Equipment


When buying through a dealership, there are certainly pros and cons to weigh. The biggest benefit of buying used construction equipment through your local dealer is that you can often purchase certified pre-owned equipment. These machines are more thoroughly inspected and come with warranties. Here are the pros and cons to consider:


 You can usually demo a piece of used heavy equipment before you buy.

 Dealers may offer service and parts support post-sale to support the life of your machine.

 Dealers can typically provide a more reliable machine history, helping you make an informed decision.

 You’re able to purchase certified pre-owned equipment, which comes with peace of mind and additional warranties.

 Dealers can offer additional finance options to help you with your equipment purchase, as compared to other buying methods.


 The equipment selection can be limited, but a dealer can help locate what you’re looking for.

John Deere construction equipment operating at a worksite


Buying used equipment directly from the current owner is similar to buying a used car. If the operator took good care of the equipment and has service logs, you could be acquiring a sound piece of equipment at a more reasonable rate due to the direct transaction. However, buyer beware — the seller may withhold any negative information about the equipment. Travel is another consideration point, so be sure to factor that into your budget. Here’s the full list of pros and cons to consider:


 Since you’re buying directly from the previous owner, you’re working with someone who truly understands the machine.

 Thanks to online searches, you can source the exact piece of used heavy equipment you’re looking for.


 Sellers could withhold negative information about the machine.

 In order to examine the equipment, you may need to travel or rely on photos.

 Because a contractor isn’t tied to a larger dealership or heavy equipment auction, they may not be as concerned about selling you a unit with a clear title.

John Deere construction equipment on a worksite


Auctions can be an exciting, viable way to purchase a piece of used equipment at a good price. However, there are some big points to consider. To start, you often won’t be able to demo the equipment and it likely hasn’t been through a full vetting process - so you may end up paying more in reconditioning and repairs. Additionally, shipping costs can add up - you should come to an auction with a way to bring your new machine home. Check out the full list of pros and cons:


 Machinery auctions usually have the largest selection of used construction equipment in one place.

 If the auction is in person, you may be able to inspect the pre-owned equipment before bidding.


 You won’t have a chance to demo the equipment.

 You may end up paying more in reconditioning and repairs in the long run because the equipment wasn’t thoroughly vetted.

 At heavy equipment auctions, there’s always the risk of getting swept up in “auction fever” and bidding more than you planned.

 Transportation can be a pain point, as you may not have the adequate equipment with you to take your unit back home. If you find yourself in this situation, you may end up paying more for shipping.

 Similar to a private sale, there may not be a captive finance option.

Make sure you do your homework before buying your next piece of used heavy equipment. If you decide purchasing through a dealer is your best option, you can browse local dealership inventory of used John Deere equipment.


Construction site with man and John Deere Equipment

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