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A good used car?


MariaInAL
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Looking to buy a used car within the next couple weeks and looking for suggestions. I only want to spend 3000.00 or less and don't want to finance or buy from a dealer. Been looking at used cars for sale by owner and have come across a few that seem like a good deal. It's been difficult to find consumer reviews unless you subscribe somewhere, so I've just been asking around. (I was told by couple of people NOT to buy a Land Rover...I found a used one for 2600.00 with only 122,000 miles and no mechanical problems...really liked this vehicle, but heard they're unreliable/expensive to fix.)

I trust what real people have to say based on their experience way more than "expert" reviews.

I just want a reliable used vehicle; trying not to be picky (I'd really love to have a Lexus, but I'm trying to stay away from what I cannot afford!!). I'm not willing to give up certain things to drive an expensive vehicle. Besides, I'm trying to get out of debt and free up $$$.

My criteria, in no particular order, are reliability, gas mileage, roomy, inexpensive to repair.

I don't want to get stuck with a lemon so any suggestions/advice would be appreciated!!

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I am assuming you are subscribing to CARFAX so you can check out each vehicles history before you buy it. I think they have an unlimited reports version for less than $40.

Good to have when buying private party.

I think your criteria is great! I would like to see all of us on the 'no payment plan!'. :mrgreen: Better for our wallets in the short and long run.

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I agree with the CARFAX suggestion, around here alot of people buy cars at auctions and try to pass them off as 'family owned' cars- they have a different car in the yard for sale every week. That goes for car dealerships too, just because it's on the lot- doesn't mean it was a trade in.

www.edmunds.com you can find reviews and costs for used cars, and some great buying advice.

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For a specific car, and which may be very affordable and plentiful, look around for a Saturn S series. The little ones.

SWMBO and I bought a new 2000 Saturn SW2 in September 2000. We've been very happy with it. Small, reliable, economical. I believe either 2000 or 2001 was the last year for the S Series before they replaced it with the Saturn Ion.

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Thanks for all your advice!

Today, when I would leave a lot, I would call my mother and have her look up the kelly blue book value on anything I was interested in. It helped because if the car was overpriced no matter how much I liked it, I would forget about it.

This afternoon I researched insurance rates....ugh!!

I didn't know about CARFAX until after I bought my last car in 2005, but I ran it and thankfully I got a good report. I'll definitely use it this time BEFORE I buy.

I have to buy soon because I have no AC and it's gettin' HOT in Alabama!

Wish me luck and thanks again!!

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A Geo Prizm is the same car as a Toyota Corolla, but not many people know that.

I bought my Corolla new in '02 (03 model year) and it's going quite strong with 145,000+ miles. Plenty of maintenance done, but no major repairs.

If you're looking for reliability, I'd look at Japanese cars - Nissan, Toyota & Honda.

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My criteria, in no particular order, are reliability, gas mileage, roomy, inexpensive to repair.
A $2600 landrover based on this criteria? That won't serve your purposes.

Think Honda, Honda, Honda. My beater Honda Civic was $3000. Five years later, it has 236,000 miles on it, gets 30mpg, costs 30% of what it cost to insure my Ford Explorer, and runs better than ever. You cannot kill these cars. Based on that and the experience of other Honda owners, you cant go wrong with a four door civic. And they're surprisingly large inside. My trunk space is much larger than my buddy's G35.

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