The current financial climate for most is cloudy with a chance of showers. Fortunately the same guy that is costing our country millions if not billions in tax dollars to fuel a war has decided to give a little back. So, what are you going to do with your tax "stimulus" check? Some say pay down credit cards while others figure it will go to groceries and such. One friend has informed me that hers is going towards a down on a much needed car.
While many are tolerating the wheels they have, others are driving cars destined for the scrap pile and my friend is one such person. Some vehicles get to the point where the repairs out weight the value of the auto, this it the point where you should throw up the white flag. Let me add that now is as good a time to buy as any.
The conversation between my friend started by her asking about a vehicle she found at a local dealership. First thing she says is, "they want too much for it". At this point I asked how she found it to be "too much"? She replied that Edmund's stated the car was worth thousands less.
There is more to the value of a car than just checking with one site, or "book" for that matter. The important thing is the "fair market value" of the car. This is factored by local supply and demand in your respective area. Most dealers utilize Kelly Blue Book for pricing cars but even they look at what the competition is selling like models for.
Another thing to factor when shopping for a car is if the car has an extended warranty. It costs dealers hundreds if not thousands to certify a car. Rather it be $300 or $1000, this cost needs to be factored into the sale price of the vehicle. I always say that a CPO car is worth the additional cost because by being certified means not only the dealer but the manufacturer will stand behind the guarantee.
Does this mean you pay the "asking" price of a car? No, there is always room for negotiation when buying a car. Just keep in mind that when buying a pre-owned car from a dealer, you are also buying piece of mind. All dealers do a safety inspection and smog on cars for sale. With a private seller purchase you don't always know if everything is zen. This requires you to take the car to a professional to have all systems checked out for any potential problems.
Take your time when purchasing a vehicle, it's a buyer's market out there. I have offered before, but if anyone ever has any questions while in the car buying process, feel free to contact me. I am always open to share my years of auto experience.