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Old Aug 13, 2010, 10:29 PM   #1
senseless
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How many miles before trading a car?

I currently have 75,000 miles on my Honda with a value of $10,000. It will be difficult to trade or sell if the mileage gets too high.

Weighing trade in value, breakdowns, future maintenance costs and convenience, what's an ideal time to replace it?
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Old Aug 13, 2010, 10:33 PM   #2
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I currently have 75,000 miles on my Honda with a value of $10,000. It will be difficult to trade or sell if the mileage gets too high.

Weighing trade in value, breakdowns, future maintenance costs and convenience, what's an ideal time to replace it?

i would not buy a new car if you don't need one. Especially with a Honda. it will go for another 75000 and more easily with low maintenance. My dad has a 2001 car we have had since new. The longer we keep it the less we have to pay for a car because while it does require maintenance the maintnence costs are less then the monthly payment of a new car.
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Old Aug 13, 2010, 10:41 PM   #3
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drive it into the ground. My dads honda is 11 years old and has 190k miles on it and still going strong.

In those 11 years the most costly items that had to be replaced was the clutch but those tend to wear out at around 100k.

Either way just drive it into the ground. Yes you loss desperation but it sure as a heck a lot less than what you would loss on a new car.
I am going to take my 2004 sentra and drive it until it is near 10 years old. It currently has 75k miles on it and chances are when it is finally sold it it will have over a 100k on it.

My personal vote on a car is drive it until your monthly REPAIR cost is around 100-200 a month. Repairs do not include anything that falls under maintainces like brake pads, tires, fluid chances ect.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 12:31 AM   #4
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I have 120k on my current car and usually drive them until 200k.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 07:18 AM   #5
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Why not delay purchasing a car, using your current one as long as possible. Living without a car payment is the best approach and if you can drive your current one into the ground you'll be better off.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 07:49 AM   #6
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i would not buy a new car if you don't need one. Especially with a Honda. it will go for another 75000 and more easily with low maintenance. My dad has a 2001 car we have had since new. The longer we keep it the less we have to pay for a car because while it does require maintenance the maintnence costs are less then the monthly payment of a new car.
I'd agree. Hondas are great cars. As long as you keep up with the basic maintenance and most of those 75,000 miles are highway miles you could easily get twice as many miles without problem.

New cars are almost as much of a rip off as diamonds and jewelry.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 07:52 AM   #7
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I echo what all have said, why buy new when things are fine with the one you have?
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 07:57 AM   #8
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Depending on the kind of car you are going to get Id say sell it now. If your going to get a car that is $20,000 or less you can cut half or more of the price with the proceeds from selling your current car. But if you wait until the car is run into the ground you spent more money in repair bills, no longer have that $10,000 and you didnt have the new car you wanted.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 08:08 AM   #9
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Depending on the kind of car you are going to get Id say sell it now. If your going to get a car that is $20,000 or less you can cut half or more of the price with the proceeds from selling your current car. But if you wait until the car is run into the ground you spent more money in repair bills, no longer have that $10,000 and you didnt have the new car you wanted.
But the OP said nothing about wanting a new car. He asked about optimal timing of trading. All the above responses are logically and financially sound. The worst investment of money is in buying a new car. The best use of money is to drive a Honda into the ground.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 08:13 AM   #10
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But the OP said nothing about wanting a new car. He asked about optimal timing of trading. All the above responses are logically and financially sound. The worst investment of money is in buying a new car. The best use of money is to drive a Honda into the ground.
Yes, I wouldnt "invest" money in a car since they depreciate in value as soon as there driven off of the lot. But usually when people ask something like this there alluding that they want something new.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 08:32 AM   #11
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I echo what all have said, why buy new when things are fine with the one you have?
Have you not seen his username?
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 08:37 AM   #12
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IMHO, most cars start to lose serious value after about 80k miles. So if that's the case, it's best to sell it now, while it's in reasonably good condition, if you want a new car.

Driving the car into the ground would be more economical, if you're alright driving your car for another 5-7 years.

The only thing I would recommend is not doing something in between, i.e., drive it until 120k and then try and sell it. In this case you have lost a lot of resale value and the utility of your paid-off car.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 09:04 AM   #13
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My Grandmother had a buick skylark she drove from 1966-1991 it had had to have over 90,000 miles on it or so.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 09:12 AM   #14
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I'd drive it until you have to push the thing to the dealer to trade it in. If you've been taking care of the car, keeping up on maintenance, etc, then 75,000 miles isn't a lot and you could get another 75,000 out of it.

And FWIW, I don't think a dealer would refuse a car for trade in if it has high mileage, they'll usually give you something for it. I know my parents have traded in cars that barely run and they might get a few hundred bucks. I always felt that they should be paying the dealer to take those pieces of crap off their hands.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 09:24 AM   #15
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I'd drive it until you have to push the thing to the dealer to trade it in. If you've been taking care of the car, keeping up on maintenance, etc, then 75,000 miles isn't a lot and you could get another 75,000 out of it.

And FWIW, I don't think a dealer would refuse a car for trade in if it has high mileage, they'll usually give you something for it. I know my parents have traded in cars that barely run and they might get a few hundred bucks. I always felt that they should be paying the dealer to take those pieces of crap off their hands.

Sometimes dealers will give you more just because they want to sell you the new car. Last year my mom and I went to a GMC dealer to look at the Arcadias and asked how much trade in would they give us on our 2000 Toyota Sienna, we were expecting a couple hundred $ since its 10 years old, had 150,000 miles, had things wrong with it and wasnt the cleanest car inside or out. Well they guy came back and said Ill give you $2000 and we were really suprised and then he started talking about the car more and my mom said it still seems like alot and then he goes Ill give you $3000 for the car and my mom goes hmm and then he goes $3500. So we could have got $3500 for a car we thought was worth $300. Given it is a Toyota the Hondas are the same way so Im sure it will still be worth money in years to come just not $10,000 like it is now.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 09:49 AM   #16
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Reality is, you should drive it til it cannot be repaired or made safe for a reasonable amount.

People looked at me strange when I spent more fixing a car than it was worth ... but those repairs were to replace items all at once that would last another 100k miles (alternator, ac, brakes, and clutch).

Heck even a new set of tires had a 75k mile warranty.

Much cheaper to repair a reliable vehicle than to trade for a money pit.

---

However, when you keep driving an old car, you do miss out on all the new safety features and likely the new replacement fares better in crash tests.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 09:58 AM   #17
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Depending on the kind of car you are going to get Id say sell it now. If your going to get a car that is $20,000 or less you can cut half or more of the price with the proceeds from selling your current car. But if you wait until the car is run into the ground you spent more money in repair bills, no longer have that $10,000 and you didnt have the new car you wanted.
but at the same token if you take what your car payments would be on the 10k and put it into a saving account you are still going to be saving more per month than how much value you loss in the older car.

That is something some people could do is after they pay off their car is to continue to put away that much money into savings for the next car. It is not like they really will feel the pain since they already have been saving that much. In the long run it helps them out because they keep putting away each time and allows them to get the next car with a smaller loan.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 11:12 AM   #18
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Have you not seen his username?
I believe the majority don't want him to be dollarless.

I think he wants new wheels, more than he wants just his current mode of "transportation".

If he has the money, I would suggest selling/trading-up while it still has some warrantee (if any) left on it.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 01:52 PM   #19
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i would not buy a new car if you don't need one.
+6 (or is it 7?) Mileage is irrelevant. Need is the issue. Of course, the definition of "need" varies, like mileage. I replaced a car once because the back seats had very little leg room, and our kids were getting as tall as us. Practical purchase.

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Living without a car payment is the best approach ...
Especially coupled with:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodimus Prime View Post
...if you take what your car payments would be on the 10k and put it into a saving account ...

That is something some people could do is after they pay off their car is to continue to put away that much money into savings for the next car. It is not like they really will feel the pain since they already have been saving that much. In the long run it helps them out because they keep putting away each time and allows them to get the next car with a smaller loan.
...or no loan at all. I did exactly as you suggest and have paid cash for the last three vehicles I've purchased. I saved a lot in interest, (though not as much as I thought I would) and had enough for a new car faster than I could have paid off a loan.
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Old Aug 14, 2010, 02:30 PM   #20
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I would say now might not be a bad time; if you've got a Honda that you've gotten 75k out of and can still get $10,000, then take that $10k and put it towards a new car while the car is still worth something. Sure you could "run it into the ground" and drive the same car for 20 years, the last ten of those twenty of which would be when the car is a pile of *****, but it comes down to what you want for yourself and if you're comfortable always driving a pile of *****. Driving it into the ground is no guarantee that it will be cheaper either. It's all fine and dandy til it needs a $2k engine or transmission, or $500 every month to stay afloat, or $1k AC compressor.

I'd say take the $10k and run, put it towards a new car with a warranty with a guaranteed $0 a month repair costs and a payment you can budget for, and with $10k down you'll be better off with the car in that you won't be upside down on the new one if something happens and you need to sell. What's the point of running a car into the ground? So you can drive a pile with no planned payment but a ticking time bomb of repair costs at any time, just so at the end of the day after driving an unenjoyable pile of junk for X years when it finally does crap out for good you can have nothing to put down on a new one so you can be upside down or with a large payment on a new one?

Figure it this way, you can do it one of two ways:

1) Run current car into the ground until, say, 2015. Over the next five years pray that you can save up $10k for a down payment (since you won't have a car payment now) for a new car for when your Honda is worthless junk and leaves you stranded for the last time, forcing you to buy a new car whether you really are ready to or not since you never know what will pop up or where you'll be financially when your car does take it's final crap. Spend X years driving a piece of crap, gambling everyday on repair costs you may or may not have.

2) Sell/trade car now, and buy a new car with $10k down. Have a car payment, but also a warranty so no surprises and you can budget your money more easily knowing you won't have a big surprise repair bill (or multiples). Since you have a payment, you won't really be able to save for a downpayment above, but if you trade this new car in again when the warranty is up (which by then should be about when you pay it off), then you can figure it would roughly be worth $10k (for example's sake) so just like above, you've got $10k to put towards a new car, except this time you know you've got the money there, and can trade it at a time that is comfortable for you, not when you are forced to. Spend X years driving a nice new car that's not a pile, and have a nice amount of change to put towards another new one in 2015 if you want.

In both the examples above, the net result is the same if the situations are ideal--both people end up with $10k to put towards a new car, except one person is going to get forced into a new car when it may not be good for them, drive a piece of crap for a bunch of years til they hate it, and gamble on repair bills while trying to save for the day the car does crap out, while the other person will always be in a car that's nice, has a warranty, and has no surprises financially or otherwise.

Trade the car while it's still worth something.

FWIW, you can always trade a car, they just won't give you much for it as the mileage/age creeps.
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Old Aug 15, 2010, 01:02 AM   #21
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I don't know about keeping a car for more than 120,000 (non-highway) miles. At that point, there's a high risk of being stranded on the highway and the car is going to have continual repair issues. Struts, exhaust, catalytic converter, braking, various check engine light issues, etc. The car becomes less safe, less fuel efficient and less appealing to drive.

I suppose the question should be at what mileage point does a car suddenly plunge in value because dealers will have to dump them at auction.
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Old Aug 15, 2010, 06:08 AM   #22
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Sometimes dealers will give you more just because they want to sell you the new car. Last year my mom and I went to a GMC dealer to look at the Arcadias and asked how much trade in would they give us on our 2000 Toyota Sienna, we were expecting a couple hundred $ since its 10 years old, had 150,000 miles, had things wrong with it and wasnt the cleanest car inside or out. Well they guy came back and said Ill give you $2000 and we were really suprised and then he started talking about the car more and my mom said it still seems like alot and then he goes Ill give you $3000 for the car and my mom goes hmm and then he goes $3500. So we could have got $3500 for a car we thought was worth $300. Given it is a Toyota the Hondas are the same way so Im sure it will still be worth money in years to come just not $10,000 like it is now.
They could have given you 10,000 for the car, they will make their money one way or a other. If they overpay you for your trade in, you will overpay for your new car somehow.

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I don't know about keeping a car for more than 120,000 (non-highway) miles. At that point, there's a high risk of being stranded on the highway and the car is going to have continual repair issues. Struts, exhaust, catalytic converter, braking, various check engine light issues, etc. The car becomes less safe, less fuel efficient and less appealing to drive.

I suppose the question should be at what mileage point does a car suddenly plunge in value because dealers will have to dump them at auction.
There is no magic number that a car gets devalued. There are a couple points that dealers try to get a car under. First is before the factory warranty runs out and second is 100k, as some banks won't make a loan on it. But this won't affect trade in, as trade in values can be messed around with so much.

I don't think your Honda has a high risk of failing you. Keep up with the oil changes, take it to the mechanic for planned maintenance and it should be dependable.

However if you want a new car buy one.
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Old Aug 15, 2010, 10:07 AM   #23
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I don't think you have to worry much, people are still driving those vehicles around with 100k miles more.

Sure you MIGHT need a battery, alternator, tires, timing belt, and brakes during the next 50k miles ... but those are still less than a down payment.

Unless you do something silly like fail to replace the timing belt, and start doing regular tranny services and freshen that fluid -- its doubtful that the car won't remain as reliable through 150k as it is now.

---

With Hondas there is a large aftermarket crowd, and a lot of the kids in the area can probably do some of the repairs -- like struts -- with tools and a spring compressor rental.

Lots of places to shop around for repairs also, check and call everyone and sometimes a dealer or a Honda Tech Shop might be cheapest.

Sounds like a lot, but even if the ac, struts, and alternator all failed at once ... it would still be less than a down payment, and are still left with no payments.
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Old Aug 15, 2010, 10:42 AM   #24
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There is no magic number that a car gets devalued. There are a couple points that dealers try to get a car under. First is before the factory warranty runs out and second is 100k, as some banks won't make a loan on it. But this won't affect trade in, as trade in values can be messed around with so much.

I don't think your Honda has a high risk of failing you. Keep up with the oil changes, take it to the mechanic for planned maintenance and it should be dependable.

However if you want a new car buy one.
The majic number of a car value dropping like a rock is mile 1 off the lot.

As for high mileage car they hold their value better than people expect. For example my dads car which is 11-12 years old and has over 180k miles on it is still worth around 3k and looses relatively little value each year because of its age. Cars min value is their scrap value and as long as it is running it is going to be worth a fair amount more than its scrap value.


I am a fan of keeping cars as long as their repairs do not get insanely costly. My car I had to replace my high pressure line of my AC system but that is because I believe a rock hit it and put a hole in it.
As long as you can trust your car it is worth keeping.

Just save money in the terms of a car payment as a car ages and you just use that extra money for a larger down payment which would really be more than if you traded in your car.
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Old Aug 15, 2010, 10:54 AM   #25
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My '91 Accord is still running back and forth to Guelph University, although my Grand-Niece is driving.

About 220K kms on it now, at least. I did the timing belt at 100K, as it is an "interference" engine. Don't know if her Dad has done it since.

Only time it let me down was a dead battery at the airport parking lot. My fault. I left the dome light on for 2 weeks, and the battery probably died from hypothermia.

She loves it.
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