View Poll Results: What would you do in my position? (see post first)

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  • Sell your firstborn if you must, but find a way to get a new car!

    8 40.00%
  • Keep the clunker going until you can afford better options.

    4 20.00%
  • Buy your dad's old car.

    3 15.00%
  • Dude... pray for better options, and quick!

    5 25.00%
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Thread: Car Crazy

  1. #1

    • insufferable know-it-all
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    Car Crazy

    Ugh... so my car is on its last legs, and has been for a while. Well I'm thinking it may be on its VERY last legs at this point. It overheated twice on my 5-minute drive to work today

    Repairing it would/will be expensive, but not nearly as expensive as buying a new car. OTOH, even repaired enough to be road-worthy, it's not going to be worth much more than (or as much as) the cost of repair, so it's almost not woth fixing since it's basically predestined that I need to get a nicer vehicle sometime really soon, for taking clients around in. My current car is an embarrassment but even painting it would cost more than it's worth.

    And to make the world a whole lot more frustrating, I simply don't have the money for payments on anything. Ugh.

    Probably going to have to take up some payments though. My dad will sell me his old Benz, which would be good in the sense that I know I can rely on it to run for a long time and all, but when they DO need repairs, it's very expensive. So I just don't know.

    My options are:
    1) Get a new Honda CRV, figure out how in the h-e-double hockey sticks I'm going to make a $400/month payment, but have a brand new car which will be good for taking clients around in

    2) Fix the '96 Jeep Grand Cherokee, have the old clunker stay on the road just a little bit longer but still driving a car that's no good for business and won't be worth the cost of repairs done because of everything else that's wrong with it

    3) Get bank financing to buy my dad's old Benz which is a nice car but starting to show its age, and hope it doesn't need any major repairs any time soon.

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  2. #2

    • loves a silver lining
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    Re: Car Crazy

    If you're going to have to take out a loan for the Benz anyways, I'd go for the new car. That way you have a warranty and piece of mind. If you have payments with the Benz and then something happens you're making payments AND paying repair bills. Plus, this time of year you might be able to find a deal on an 07 as they start trying to clear them out for the 08's.



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  3. #3

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    Re: Car Crazy

    I know money is tight but heck, money is ALWAYS tight right? Especially when you throw in a mortgage. Believe me I know. That's what loans are for, and what made this country great

    IMHO, ditch the Jeep. It's just going to cost you more in the long run and you'll always be on your toes worrying about when the next bad thing is going to happen.

    What about buying a car that was a lease trade-in? They are usually only 2 years old and have low mileage.

  4. #4

    • Rally Vixen
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    Re: Car Crazy

    I would say to get a new car. If you are going to drive clients around in the car, you should have a nice vehicle. You could try looking at some of the online car buying sites (http://www.edmunds.com, http://www.autobytel.com, etc.) and see if you can get a deal on internet pricing through them.

    I would check with an accountant to see if your car payments would be eligible to be partially written off as a business expense if you drive clients around for a certain percent of the usage of the car. I could be wrong on this though.

    You have had that same car for so long, you deserve a new car!

    Quote Originally Posted by Olympicnut View Post
    What about buying a car that was a lease trade-in? They are usually only 2 years old and have low mileage.
    I love this advice! My sister bought her car this way. It has treated her well. It was fully loaded and looked as though it had rarely been used.
    Anything listed on the park maps as an attraction is fair game for inclusion in the Rally.
    I cannot confirm nor deny the inclusion of any attraction in the Rally.



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  5. #5

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    Re: Car Crazy

    If your car is only overheating it may just need a new thermostat. It's relatively inexpensive to replace. Took me 20 minutes to replace mine last weekend and $30 for the thermostat, gasket and antifreeze. Shouldn't be too expensive at a shop to fix.
    On the other hand, if you can afford it go for a newer car. O-nut has a great idea, my friend recently purchased a lease turn in for much lower than blue book and it was in exceptional shape.

  6. #6

    • Mexihick, y'all
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    Re: Car Crazy

    Keep the old car and in the process actively SAVE. If people are purchasing houses based on what your car looks like, then they aren't serious about buying.

  7. #7

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    Re: Car Crazy

    96 Jeep Grand Cherokee - OUCH! Classic money pit. They have reliability problems with engines, transmissions, body... You don't mention mileage or other condition clues, but this is NOT one of Chrysler/Jeep's most stellar products. (Probably why Dr. Z of DaimlerChrysler is looking for a way out of the Chrysler acquisition...)

    Older Benz - not a good choice. They look great, and when they are kept up and treated nicely they'll run good and last forever - but when they break you have to go to Otto to fix it, and both Otto's time and the parts ain't cheap...

    Go get your Jeep checked over, and if they can fix it simply (rod-out or recore the radiator, backflush, new thermostat, new hoses, fresh coolant, maybe a fan clutch) get it fixed for now. Then start saving for a new car in earnest.

    If they say it's the head gasket or something expensive, it's time for it to go. And you want to go new or nearly-new low miles, so you aren't buying someone else's headaches.

    NEVER Buy a lease return car unless you have it checked out thoroughly by a mechanic, and they offer an ironclad guarantee and/or auto manufacturer backed extended warranty.

    People lease expensive cars they really can't afford, and they either don't, won't or can't spend another dime on oil changes and other needed maintenance. They turn the car back in 45,000 miles later with the factory oil in the crankcase (OUCH!) - then you buy it after the damage was done, and even if you do all the oil changes on time from then on the engine sludges up and dies.

    (This is why BMW went to "All Maintenance Included in Lease", and other major makers will have to eventually. They build the needed maintenance into the lease payments to eliminate the excuse, and they have the maintenance records in their computer.)

    Go look at used rental cars, they have the records on those so you can't go too wrong. Places like 'Budget Rent-A-Car Sales'. The renters pay the depreciation, and you get a deal.

    --<< Bruce >>--
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  8. #8

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    Re: Car Crazy

    Go with the new car. A couple summers ago my old car was on its last legs too. It was just one thing after another. I finally got fed up and bought a brand new baby (and traded the old one in... didn't get much for it but it was the easiest way to get the rustbucket off my hands).

  9. #9

    • I Love Teaching!
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    Re: Car Crazy

    If your are going to buy something, maybe a used car??? A nice used car. When I bought my first car in 2003 (without my parents having to co-sign), i bought a 2001 Ford Focus It looked brand new, only had 3000 on it, now has 97000 and doing well. You could find something more reasonable that would be acceptable to take clients in, and save you a ton of money.

  10. #10

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    Re: Car Crazy

    My first car was a 1993 Dodge Shadow purchased as a used rental in '94, with about 20K miles on it. That car lasted me until 2003 with absolutely no problems at all, and still even ran great, but I just decided I wanted something new.

    Rental cars are usually kept in great shape - all the maintenance is kept up, etc. And, they sell them at well below value.

    Although, Hondas are also a great purchase, because they have a high resell value.

  11. #11

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    Re: Car Crazy

    I was going to say: Five minutes to work? Get a bike! However, then you said clients. That complicates things. No option for a work vehicle?
    -Osky

    Quote Originally Posted by sleepyjeff View Post
    Before we totally disregard extremism; lets remember the lesson of the 3 little pigs.

    The moderate pig lost his house to the wolf too
    .-- .. .-.. .-.. / .- -. -.-- --- -. . / -... --- - .... . .-. / - --- / - .-. .- -. ... .-.. .- - . / - .... .. ... ..--..

  12. #12

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    Re: Car Crazy

    Hmm...my two cents - I would opt for a newer used car (like an '03).

    Most of the depreciation on a brand new car happens right as you drive it off the lot - so unless you can put down a good-sized down payment, you're better off getting something that's almost new.
    She did it!


  13. #13

    • insufferable know-it-all
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    Re: Car Crazy

    Well, after reviewing my credit report (scary) I'm thinking it's going to take some very seriously bad repairs to make me do anything other than fix the clunker. I have to get it to a shop and find out how bad it really is.

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  14. #14

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    Re: Car Crazy

    ^ If your not sure of a shop to take the car to, ask around to co-workers, etc. You just want to make sure you don't get screwed.

    And not to sound sexist or anything, but alot of places like that will see a female walk in there and take advantage of you. Sad, but true. Take a dude with you that knows a little something about cars.

    You can also try finding a car website with a forum, type in the problems you are having and maybe somebody can educate you on what may be wrong. That way if you take it to a shop, and they say something different you could say something like:

    "Well, when I checked under the hood, it seemed like my Cylinoid was shorting out with the Alternator"

    (not sure if that's something that could happen, but you never know.


  15. #15

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    Re: Car Crazy

    Move to New York. No car needed.

    Otherwise, just buy your dad's old Benz if you can't afford something brand new and be done with it.

    "Sell your firstborn if you must, but find a way to get a new car!"

    Hah, that's kind of one of the pathetic things about L.A. (I know you live behind the Orange Curtain), even though I often miss it and will return eventually.

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