Used car ideas?

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    My fixed income FIL just totaled his old Volvo last week and we are helping him find a replacement. I have been so discouraged at the pricey cars out there with crazy high miles in the used car market. Anyone have suggestions on either decent used car dealers or places to look? We lucked out with that Volvo and it was a crazy good deal. It will be nearly impossible to find anything remotely close for half what we paid for that 5 years ago.



    I’d call a few of the local service shops to see what they know.



    I do not understand used car prices.

    Certain domestic vehicles depreciate kind of fast. Perhaps a 5 year-old Chevy or Ford might be a deal.

    But if you want an import, they are way over-priced used.

    A year and a half ago I wanted a Subaru Forester. I could have bought a three year old Forester with 40-60k and no remaining warranty for $18,000. Or I could get a brand new 2012 for $20,600. It was a no-brainer to buy the brand new one.

    My advice?

    If the vehicle depreciates rapidly, buy used. If the vehicle depreciates slowly, buy new.



    Skeeter…it’s supply and demand. Have listened to some car experts say that right, one is better off to purchase a new car for a few thousand more (like your exp. with the Subaru).

    Certain used cars have a high sticker price, (close to brand new), because the demand for used cars exceeds the supply. People are holding onto their cars longer; not buying new cars as frequently; therefore, less used car inventory.



    We are in the market right now for a used car too. Huge bummer as we feel caught between rock and hard place on prices of “gently used”. I won’t buy anything that is approaching timing belt replacement and new tires – not worth it. So, just as above, the difference ends up being a few thousand bucks and without a warranty most times. We are starting to lean towards new, especially if we can get 0 percent on a loan!



    Hello Kayo- I don’t know if your FIL is in the market for another Volvo, but we were planning on selling our Volvo, and haven’t yet.

    It’s a 2001 V70 T5 with ~ 140,000 miles.

    we were going to ask $2,200.

    we did get 4 new tires a year ago, and we did have the timing belt replaced at the recommended time. if you want more details or have questions, my email is:

    pugetridge (dot) resident (at) gmail (dot) com

    you can see from this previous forum thread that it needs a new computer (which controls the right turn blinker)



    The trouble with buying new is the insurance is through the roof as are the tabs. That means a lot to a fixed income person.Having a timing chain replaced is not so expensive and tires are around $500. Cheaper in the long run to buy used. There are a lot of not so high miles cars out there.

    I bought my old Toyota Rav 4 a few years ago for under market value…it had 99,000 miles and now has around 130,000. It has been a fabulous and inexpensive car to run. Toyotas last least it seems they do. Ford Focus is supposed to be a good buy as well.Something will turn up.:)



    Thanks for commiserating and for tips. We have always purchased used cars and usually private party. (Our last and only dealer experience left us feeling like we got soaked although we have been happy with the car). The cars we’ve bought in the past have been through our workplaces so somewhat known seller. When I look on CL or Autotrader I have just been so dismayed by the high mileage of most of the used cars. 180k or even 200k and people still want $4-5000. It seems crazy to me! Sam-c I will talk to my hubby and see what he thinks about your Volvo. That might be a possibility in the short-term. Sounds like it might be a good fit if we can talk my FIL into it. Those Volvos are tanks which might be a good idea considering he is not the best driver. Maybe we should sign him up for a remedial driver’s ed class while we are at it. :)



    I purchased a “used car” from Enterprise Car Sales on 148th & Aurora some yrs. ago. The price was great, vehicle was in perfect condition & there were only 3200 miles on the car. As I remember it was one of their rental cars.



    If the person who is looking for the car is likely to spend more than $150 per month on gas, consider getting a NEW electric vehicle. Nissans 2013 Leaf is supposed to have a lease that will be about $100 per month. If they drive less than 100 miles per day, the lease on the Leaf will more than offset the what they will be paying in gas. I am going to lease one, as the version that I test drove (2012) a few weeks ago was a really nice car. They tell me that I can plug the car into a regular household plug and it will recharge overnight.



    We’ve had good luck finding cars through We bought our 1999 forester from the lexus dealer in bellevue. It’s like they were embarrassed by it! Someone must have traded it in. Got a decent price although we still had to go through the BS of the car sale – they even tried to sell us on undercoating – really…for a used car. The price was right and it served us well.



    go to the library and check Consumer Reports that identifies best used cars



    IMO there is nothing about leasing that makes financial sense, unless it is a biz write off.



    If you have any interest in considering a 2005 Mercury Mountaineer, 6-cyl, please contact me at It’s in great shape and only has 80K miles! We know longer need it and are willing to let it go for less than Blue Book just to get it out of the driveway.

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