Saturday, November 22, 2008

Why a used car makes so much sense

So you're in the market to buy a car. You've done your research and decided you want a small sedan with automatic that gets 30mpg in mixed driving and won't cost you more than $350 a month for 5 years. After checking out all the reviews and specifications and prices on various websites like Edmund's and Vehix and MSN Cars, you've decided on a brand new Toyota Corolla LE sedan.

WHOA! Why are you spending so much money that you haven't even MADE yet? What if you get laid off in a few months? What if you take a pay cut, or have hospital expenses for some reason? Your nice shiny new car will get repossessed from you and you won't be able to go anywhere!

Let's break this down. The new 2009 Corolla and the 2003-2008 Corolla are VERY similar. You could buy a used 2003 Corolla LE with the same ABS, airbags, power windows and locks, cruise control, CD stereo, and everything else, for a THIRD of the cost of a new one! $18000 car or $6000 car. The 2009 model might cost more than $350 a month at FIVE years, and you might have to go SIX years to stay in budget.
You could have the 2003 model paid off in TWO years at $350 a month even if you put very little down! And you'll still have the same reliable Toyota. Change the headlights and taillights if you want something different. Warranty? Who needs a warranty on a Corolla? Aren't you supposed to weld the hood shut on those and have the oil sucked out the bottom and refilled by a tube? Like in the commercials?

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