Are you a fairly new pilot that’s interested in looking to purchase a used aircraft? How do you know where to start and which aircraft is right for you? You could talk to the sales representatives at different aircraft dealers and manufacturers, but how do you know that they aren’t just going to try and sell you on whatever they have, and not what is best for you and your needs?
One good idea is to talk to some experienced pilots. They will be able to give you unbiased opinions and help you pick the right airplane. An experienced CFI (Certified Flight Instructor) can often be a great resource in helping you sort through the current aircraft for sale market. A CFI can often help you find the right type of aircraft for you, help you narrow down your search, and accompany you on test flights so that you don’t put yourself in an uncomfortable situation.
Also, once you have purchased an aircraft for yourself, it is a good idea to have that instructor come with you to bring it home (if necessary) and give you some instruction until you are comfortable in your airplane. Considering most pilots end up purchasing something other than the aircraft that they were trained in, it is critical that they spend at least five to ten hours with an instructor getting comfortable in the airplane by doing maneuvers, approaches, and learning the aircraft’s systems. Make sure you spend time on the ground reading the manual BEFORE getting into the airplane to learn everything you can about it. Doing this will help ease your transition and make you a better pilot. Remember, a good pilot is never done learning!