Not everyone can afford a BRAND NEW 2011 this Labor Day holiday weekend, so what’s in store for those car shoppers and car buyers anxious to score on a…
USED CAR deal during the 2011 Labor Day sales events?
The good news is Used Car prices for 2011 Labor Day holiday sales have stabilized and LUXURY sedans have actually dropped 5%-10% from 6 months ago.
Looking for an inexpensive used sedan under $10,000.00?
Good luck, so is EVERYONE else, and the nice, low mile, imports are still high by comparison to the domestics.
A 2004 Toyota Camry with 80k miles will bring 1500.00 MORE MONEY than the same year, model, miles than the comparable Chevrolet Malibu. Is it justified?
YES, in some cases, certain model year manufacturing at Ford, GM and Chrysler is duly noted for lackluster quality control. Visit CONSUMER REPORTS for the specifics on any particular car or go to www.NHTSA.com for service bulletins, recalls, complaints.
Meanwhile, deals can be found on 2001-2008 Chrysler PT.Cruisers. These are very solid, reliable and versatile hatchbacks that take a hit and are reasonably CHEAP. Not great on gas, but you can pick up a PT with 65k miles for $8000!
10 tips for finding a USED CAR deal this Labor Day sales weekend.
SO the things to remember about shopping the lots this Labor Day weekend hoping to grab a clearance deal…
- Visit Google, Yelp or DEALERRATER.com to check out the online reputations of the local dealerships in your area.
- Once you know what dealers to consider, visit their website and click on the SPECIALS! These are usually cars marked down to their lowest prices already and most internet prices are very competitive to begin with BECAUSE you can easily compare hundreds of cars in the click of a keystroke, and the dealers know it.
- COMPARE Apples to Apples. BE CAREFUL about believing everything you see on an online vehicle posting! Dealerships are known to add DISCLAIMERS in small print, i.e. *requires a trade of $5,000.00 or cash equivalent. If the car you are considering is the cheapest in the bunch, READ the details carefully.
- Check on the CERTIFIED PRE-OWNED STATUS. IS this a FACTORY CERTIFICATION or a DEALER certification?
What’s the difference? ALOT! A dealer can say he did his own certification and the car is up to par and then he sells you an extended service contract from XYZ company.
A FACTORY CERTIFIED used CAR must meet the original manufacturer’s criteria, can ONLY be offered by a BRANDED dealer licensed to sell that BRAND/MAKE new, and it comes with a warranty which mandates original manufacturer parts, a special low interest rate (for qualified buyers), and the certification is honored at all branded dealership and ASE/ACE shops in the country and (sometimes) Canada. EXAMPLE: PORSCHE.
- Know your credit rating BEFORE you make an appointment to test-drive. If you have credit challenges, call the dealership and ask for the fleet or internet manager. Be direct when inquiring if they have a second chance finance or car loans for people with less than great credit. The manager will be honest, perhaps asking you to fill out an online credit application prior to arriving at the dealership. DON’T DO IT> secure your credit score through your bank or credit union and tell the dealer what the AUTO SCORE is. IF you have trouble getting an AUTO CREDIT SCORE, go into the dealership and do the credit application in person. Make sure you review the actual report for discrepancies and to see the score for yourself. Note the credit bureau company on the report: TRANSUNION, EQUIFAX, TRW/EXPERIAN and write down the score. They can’t legally give you a copy but you can take notes, should you decide to go elsewhere in your car search. Limit the number of times your credit report is pulled as each time an inquiry is made, the score drops up to 7 points. UGLY but True.
- Once you find the car you want, take the test-drive, do your due diligence and ask to see the title (so you know they actually have it) and a CARFAX or AUTOCHECK on the car. Look for accidents or discrepancies in the mileage that would trigger some concern.
- Ask if you can take the car to an independent mechanic before you sign? go to AAA or ask those you know if they have a mechanic-repair shop they trust. Get the car inspected so you know what possible expenses lay in wait.
- If you purchase an extended service contract from the dealership, ask if there is a waiting period before you can use it, and if they will pay the deductible if you must use it within 90 days. Most states have a limited used car warranty law.
- NOTE: There are usually no USED CAR LEMON LAWS to protect you when purchasing a USED CAR from a dealer.
- GET ALL PROMISES IN WRITING! Never take delivery of a dark car a night (you can’t see damages) and make sure the vehicle identification number on the actual car matches all the paperwork you are shown (CARFAX) and sign!
If you need any advice on your Labor Day used car deal this holiday weekend, feel free to contact me using the form below.