Buying A Used Car: Saving Money
Saving money on buying our car was an easy and fun moment. We made several decisions that has been saving us money on car purchases for a long time. Some twenty plus years ago it dawned on us that buying new cars and securing a loan was a waste of money.
As soon as you drive the new car off the lot it depreciates, and lowers the value of the car by thousands.. Instant loss. Terrible investment…not to mention the added loss of interest paid on a loan at the same time. Double loss. Ever since that moment we have purchased used cars without loans, and just keep on saving money. Each one has been a joy to own.
Fast forward to today. We have been driving a bomber twenty year old car around with the intention of saving money to buy another used car. When I say bomber I mean bomber. The car cost us $1500. Wait til you see it. But our commitment to buying the car with cash trumped our need for a nice vehicle.
When we bought the car the paint was not faded, and the header was there on the inside. The header literally disintegrated, and the paint on the car simply faded away LOLOL embarrassing. Can I say our new used car is lovely.
How Did We Get Into This Position?
How did we get into this position? One lazy afternoon someone borrowed our car, and let’s just say they totaled it. Yikes. The car had liability insurance which meant if it was our driver’s fault that the car was totaled the insurance company was not obligated to pay us anything. We had not saved enough money at this point to buy the kind of used car we were used to driving. The cost and availability of used cars had changed. Prices had sky-rocket! Double trouble. I increased the amount of money we put aside for each month for purchasing a car. This experience has been incredibly humbling.
Buying the Used Car
Finally, we had enough money to buy another used car. Usually, we buy a car from private sale. We spent 6 months looking for a private sale purchase…nothing. Which is why we decided to go to a used car dealership. Not my favorite choice because we will be paying dealer charges, and will not be saving money as we would have if it was a private sale.. We just could not find a decent private sale used car.
After months and months of looking and searching we finally decided to take a look at a local used car dealer. We both just kinda giggled as this is not the usual way we go. We did not think we would find a thing. LOL !!! Oh, ye of little faith. We found a Toyota Camry. Yahoo…right in the correct price range of $4,000. It was the weekend, and they were closing. We agreed to come in, and purchase the car Monday morning.
Monday morning bright and early we arrived at the car dealership to discover that the car had sold on Friday, and the Saturday salesman did not know it.! Hmmm we were not happy. But wait it gets better. In the same breath they say we have a Toyota Avalon that has just come in, and we will sell it to you for the same price as the Camry. That was a $1,000 discount, and a huge step up in quality.
We did a test drive. They let us have it for 2 hours. It was taken to our trusted mechanic for a check up. It had leather seats, auto windows, windshield wipers that come on by themselves when it rains, separate heated seats, separate cooling and heating systems, an incredible dashboard, was a full size car, and had automatic drive. The car cost $4,000. plus $400. dealer fees. Normally we barter, but they had already come down $1,000. We did however barter with them for some repairs on the arm rest which had a tear, and with a few other minor details. These cars can be driven 300,000 miles with very little need of repair. This car was perfect for us. We were sold. Bought it that very day. Loooove it. When buying a new or used car check this link out to learn about depreciation values.
Drove her home and began to ponder when we would register it. Why not right this minute? Everything in us wanted to do register it that day. Here is how we made our decision.
Questions We Asked
- Do we want to drive it through the slush, ice and snow this year? NO
- Can we buy the snow tires? No, we paid an extra 400.00 to the car dealer for fees. That ate up the extra money we had set aside for the car. We had bought tires for the other car last year, and our tire fund was low.
- Can we register it? Yes, but we decided not to because we had just registered our other car, and the city hall folks said we could not roll over the registration unless we proved we no longer OWNED the other car. What????
- Are we willing to drive the old car. Yes… we had been driving it this long what is the difference? Decision made. We parked the Avalon for the winter.
In April our twenty year old car bit the dust, and we pulled out the new used Toyota. Yahoo. We finally get to drive her. Even though it was a few months earlier then expected we were happy because we knew we were still saving money. We met many of our goals by waiting to put her on the road. We saved money on insurance and registering her, she was not driven in the ice and snow, and we did not have to buy snow tires right away.
How Much Money Did We Save
Cash not spent
A. $60.00 cash saved on insurance
B. $75.00 cash saved on registration
$135.00 CASH SAVED….
- Because of the error of the used car dealer we have the added value of $1,000 on this vehicle if we choose to sell it.
- Not to mention the lifting of our spirits, because she is an upgrade beyond what we had planned on purchasing.
Cash Deferred Until Next Year
- $500 to $600 for tires. This will give me the time to save the additional money needed for the snow tires.
What We Did With the 20 Year Old Car
Still earning and saving money here!
- Sold the old car to a used parts car lot not a metal dump. The metal dump offered us 85.00. The used car parts lot offered us $200.00
- Sold the tires on the old car for $100.00.
Total earned on the 20-year-old car 300.00.
Putting It All Together
Here she is all settled in with the dandelions that we do not cut down until the local bees feast on them as this is the first bee food after a long, cold, flowerless winter.
I earned or saved on my vehicles $435.00
Added value on the new Avalon $1,000.00
Money savings $1,435.00
Things To Consider
- Buy used….less depreciation
- Skip the loan….save interest
- Buy Private ….less expensive and no dealer fees
- Consider best options for selling old car. Including selling on Craig’s list, used parts dealer, metal dump. If your car parts are valuable and you could make more money that way than sell the parts, and have a metal dump pick it up. They will pay you to pick it up.
Creating new financial options for yourself will transform your mindset from spending loads of money on cars to finding beautiful used cars at private sales hopefully for good prices. Happy car hunting.
Til next time,