Author Topic: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]  (Read 3237 times)

och4

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Oh kay, the positive news first! I have always saved money and getting a huge increase in pay a few years back didn't change my spending habits that much, still eat out too often though. >.< However I have about 26k saved up not including my 401k or my current vehicle value. Sadly, that huge lump sum is just sitting in my account. Not sure how I should use it.

With that being said, my 03 Camry [142k miles][owe nothing on it][5k value after repairs] is dead in my parking spot right now. Need a new Rack and Pinion which is about a grand and four hundred. After already probably spending about a grand and half on this car in the last three years or maybe closer to two grand in repairs. I am ready to give it up and buy another used car. I have my eyes on a yaris and/or scion. That 40MPG looks really promising as I commute too far as it is, 2 hours a day at 50 miles in total. I am trying to convince my SO to relocate.

I haven't found much in my area for those two cars. Any tips on buying a used  car. I feel safer buying a new car outright, but I couldn't do that in a million years. Thanks!

Reference: http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/03/19/top-10-cars-for-smart-people/

CarDude

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2014, 05:47:24 AM »
I'd skip over both of those vehicles and go straight to a 2008+ Accord at the mid-size level or a 2006+ Civic at the small car level. I wouldn't drop down to the minicar level (Yaris, old Scions) for safety reasons. You can get 30+ mpg in an Accord and 40+ in a Civic with careful driving. I don't recommend the Corolla until later years because Toyota took much longer to make side airbags standard. The 2007+ Camry is another good option at the midsize level for safety and 30+ mpg highway.

och4

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2014, 03:02:38 PM »
Thanks for the advise. I have been looking at cars from 2005 and 2008 and up. I was thinking of trying a manual car out. I have never drove one. They can't be that hard to learn, right? Most of my friends advise against it while only one of them know how to drive a manual.  Any tips? I am thinking about 5k to 8k the tops for a nice used car. I have a manual Scion hatchback in mind at 65k miles from 2008. He's asking 9k but I think I can bring it down to 7k. Is that still too much money?

Would it be a terrible. mean idea to try out manual cars at a used car shop? XDD

darkadams00

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2014, 03:29:31 PM »
$5K-8K is about right for an older, used car, depending on your market. At that level you'll either get a car that just won't die, or you'll get a lemon. Priced at $8K-10K, and you shouldn't have to worry about lemon status for at least 3 years or more. Then you'll know.

As to specific car selection, get a car that fits your needs and driving style. My wife and I have been satisfied with small sedans and compact hatchbacks for almost 20 years, but some people prefer mid-size at the very least. As to safety features, it's hard for me to worry much about a car's added safety features since my wife and I bike weekly in traffic for commuting, grocery getting, and general errand running. No metal cage, seat belts, or airbags on our bikes, and if I can ride a bike well enough to avoid injury, dismemberment, or death (at least that's the goal), then I don't think driving equally well in a compact car puts me at more risk. However, I might be more interested in safety features if a teenager/inexperienced driver would be driving the car at any time.


och4

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2014, 03:51:01 PM »
My only needs are great MPG and space in the back. Which the hatchbacks of Yaris and Scion are good for. How many miles should I go for? I am trying to move closer to my job, so I can commute there on a bikes. I have been riding for about a year and half and I enjoy it immensely.

darkadams00

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2014, 05:30:52 PM »
I'm usually between 50-80K miles in that price range but in opposite directions, i.e. 50K miles = $8K, 60K miles = $7K, 70K miles = $6K, 80K miles = $5K, but that's a very loose definition and definitely subject to change if the car is in above average condition. I never buy a car that is in bad enough condition that I would ask for it to be discounted due to condition. Also, I've never bought the two cars you mention, so you might not be able to meet these constraints with those two models. I'm more successful hitting the good condition, good price, acceptable mileage window with domestics, older Mazdas, and Hyundais.

och4

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2014, 07:24:05 PM »
I am going off of MMM's list. Scion xA/xB/tC/xD, toyota yaris, honda fit, mazda3, toyota echo, hyundai elentra touring, and suzuki sx4. The Mazda3 and Hyundai Elentra Touring are makes you have mention. However have you used these? Can you comment on those?

This would be my process for buying a used vehicle:
-Ask questions about the car before meeting up, did they buy it new, any issues, accidents, maintenance done on it, and why are you selling it?
-In person, test drive on the streets, highway, hit 80 miles, test ac/heat, ask about airbags, and ask for VIN number.
-If I like it a lot, take it to a mechanic shop and ask about accidents, airbags, and what needs to be repair.
-Then I negotiate the price. How does everyone go about this part? I usually just ask for what is needed to be done. A needed tire, or maybe paint job and to cover the cost of the diagnosis.

darkadams00

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Re: May I Please get a Slap Across the Face & A High-five. [Used Cars]
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2014, 09:13:28 PM »
Honda Fit -- won't meet the $5k-8k price unless it's pre-2009 or extremly high mileage or in bad condition but would be a front-runner once you hit $10k
Hyundai Elantra -- solid used car that can be bought cheaply because it's an Asian import that's not a Toyota or Honda. older models were ranked highly by Consumer Reports as well. use as a family car was totally satisfactory with no maintenance issues.
Mazda -- no experience with a Mazda3, but I had a Protege. bullet proof car that won't die even though my oldest son has been trying to kill it since my wife and I drove it for several years. Mazda3 sedans are also highly rated used cars with a lower price tag than Toyotas and Hondas
Other models noted -- no experience and no friends/family with first-hand knowledge

Negotiating starts with knowing a car's value in YOUR market. Check cars.com, autotrader.com, and craigslist to get the model, year, mileage, price range. Establish a low to high range for each model/year and then negotiate depending on mileage and overall condition. There are detailed websites available via Google to give all the general info you could want about buying used cars.