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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: Bearded Man on November 08, 2015, 03:05:34 PM

Title: Get another used car or keep existing one?
Post by: Bearded Man on November 08, 2015, 03:05:34 PM
Details:

-2004 Civic
-45K miles on it when purchased 4.6 years ago.
-113K miles currently.
-The loan has been paid off for a couple years now.
-Blew a head gasket at 70K miles (DOHC engine).
-New tires a year ago.
-AC compressor just went and is almost 1K to fix.
-Unsure what will break next (timing belt replaced when head gasket was replaced).
-I don't do my own auto work, other than very minor distributor cap/fuel filter/battery work etc.

I largely work from home now, and rarely drive to work, although when I do it's 70+ miles round trip. This arrangement could go away randomly, or if I change jobs.

I'm considering moving back to an area with better transit, so I can train or bus to work in Seattle if I change jobs, though most of the tech jobs have been on the east side. I think if I changed and wasn't desperate, I'd hold out for a government job. More job security, pension, and public transit to get me to Seattle, vs. working for meat grinder consulting company on the east side sitting in brutal traffic.

So given the above facts, should I keep the car as things are beginning to go, or sell and get another used car? I can get a Hyundai or Honda 2012-2014 with 30-45K miles for about 13K + tax. I could sell my Civic for about 4K currently.

I feel like I should get rid of it before another head gasket issue. Apparently this model/year is notorious for this.



Title: Re: Get another used car or keep existing one?
Post by: DaveR on November 08, 2015, 04:07:51 PM
Let's say you look at keeping your current car for a couple of years more:

Current car: $4k value, assuming 12% depreciation or so, it will be worth $3100 in a couple of years (cost $900)

A different car: $13k, 12% depr gets you to $10k in a couple years (cost $3000), plus you have to pay tax/title/license of, say 10% ($1300); total cost $4300

Assuming that operating costs (fuel, oil changes, etc) are roughly the same you are looking at a newer car costing you $3400 more. A different car makes sense if you think there will be more than $3400 in repairs in the 2 years.


Title: Re: Get another used car or keep existing one?
Post by: Cornbread OMalley on November 08, 2015, 07:21:19 PM
I would keep the current car until the job factor is figured out.  Keep milking that old car.
Title: Re: Get another used car or keep existing one?
Post by: frugaliknowit on November 08, 2015, 07:53:20 PM
Echo Cornbread.  I don't see any financial reason to sell it.
Title: Re: Get another used car or keep existing one?
Post by: RWD on November 08, 2015, 08:30:13 PM
Only 113k miles? More than half the cars I've bought had more than that. It should be good for quite a few more years.