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We recently had a minor crisis; let me set the scene for you. My daughter and I were on our way to pick up a foster dog for Louie’s Legacy and bring him to a meet and greet adoption event. Old Betsy-aka our nearly 16 year old car- was not giving me any real problems. Sure she has masking tape on her interior and her acceleration (aka her get and up and go) has been progressively a little less getuppity- she still gets us to where we need to be. Unfortunately on this said hot, 90 degree weather-day while we were stopped at a red light on an overpass when the light turned green Betsy just refused to move. Suffice it to say I panicked while 20 cars honked at me and some drivers gave me the finger as they passed me after what felt like an eternity, a friendly truck driver pushed my car a block to safety.
Lesson learned- if you have a 16-YEAR-OLD CAR with over 90,000 miles be prepared to breakdown and buy a new car and have a towing plan in place-which we did. There was really no major harm done except for the inconvenience and stress of stopping traffic on a busy road and although no one was hurt it is something I would never want to happen. Bottom line; since we didn’t have the luxury of waiting for months on end to buy a new car (because we have children that are relying on us as their UBER DRIVERS) and we couldn’t bear the though of having another breakdown we needed a site that would help us navigate all the information out there.
So we did our research thanks to Cars.com where we got the answers to some of our most burning car questions any prospective buyers want to know and here are a few things we learned which I think you should bookmark if you too are in the market for a new vehicle!
New vs. Used. The key word here is depreciation. You often hear that a car loses 20% of its value as soon as you buy it a $25,000 car will lose $5,000 initially and by the end of the first year, mileage and wear and tear could bring that to $7,500 You will notice it when you sell or trade in your car. Now let’s say you buy the same car that is 3 years old when you buy it. You could buy the car for $12,000. Three years later you could sell it for $8,000. So the used car depreciation cost you only $4,000 in three years.
Buy vs leasing a car. The choice between buying and leasing on one hand, buying involves higher monthly costs, but you own something in the end. On the other, a lease has lower monthly payments, but you get into a cycle where you never stop paying for a vehicle. More people are choosing a lease over financing a loan than just a few years ago. There are low mileage allowance in some new leases: 10,000 miles per year instead of the customary 12,000 to 15,000 miles. That may be fine for people who don’t drive much, but the average driver will exceed that figure each year. When you buy you’re free to drive as many miles as you want. But keep in mind that higher mileage lowers the vehicle’s trade-in or resale value. At the end you’ll have to deal with selling or trading in your car when you decide you want a different one. With a lease you return the vehicle at lease-end, pay any end-of-lease costs, and walk away.
Where do you go to learn about car values in your area? We were able to locate a car at a great site that will help you find the car you want at cars.com. Which makes finding a car as easy as it can be in the area you are looking. They help you find a car, compare prices, get estimates on repairs, get honest car reviews and just about anything you need when it comes to cars and maximizing your dollar.
How do you value your current car? There are many sites in which you can input the specifications of your car to determine the current value. We were able to get an accurate value also from cars.com and were able to get help selling our car there too at their How to Sell Your Used Car tab.
To be perfectly honest- we could not have ultimately bought our recent car (whose name is BABY BLUE) without all the information we gleaned from cars.com and will consider this site first before we do anything car related in the future.