Cash 1 Blog

Financial Tips & Guides
Read our tips and save money when you buy a used car.

Does Your New Car Have To Be New?

Updated on April 20, 2021

 Personal Finance

We’ve been giving you pointers on how to save money, both conventional and unconventional. There are ways to save in just about every aspect of your life, from tossing change into a jar on a daily basis to buying things used instead of new. Let’s talk about a rather large purchase item that will save you a lot of money if you buy it pre-owned.

You probably guessed we were going to talk about cars, right? Decades of commercialism have conditioned the average consumer that part of the American Dream was buying and owning a brand new car; something with zero miles on it that still smells like it was just driven off the factory floor and into your garage. But for an increasing number of Americans, this just isn’t a possibility any more, and we here at CASH 1 would like to ask you: does it really matter that much to you?

We think the priority in buying a car should be its reliability, its comfort, and its functionality in regards to your needs. For instance, do you have a lengthy commute to work every day? Then an economy car is probably what you need more than any other type of automobile. However, if you live in a snowy environment, then four wheel drive might be an important factor for you to consider.

We’re not going to endorse any specific brand of automobile. What we are doing, however, is endorsing the idea of buying a used car instead of buying brand new off the lot. You may have heard it before but it bears repeating: the second you drive a brand new car off the dealer lot, it loses at least twenty percent of its value. Of course, most of us don’t buy cars for the purpose of reselling them, but the idea here is not to pay more for a car than you should.

But we don’t exactly recommend buying a car with a lot of mileage on it either. Even if it’s a model with a good reputation for being mechanically sound, you could still wind up spending time in the shop for things that simply wear out over the natural course of time. So what are some good markers to look for when purchasing a previously owned vehicle?

Check Online for Good Resale Values

Check online for models that have good resale value and are known for being mechanically sound. Consumer Reports (online) is a good place for this.

Buy a Lower Mileage Vehicle

Set a price goal and add to it a “mileage” goal. For instance, if you budget fifteen thousand dollars for a mid-sized sedan, then try to find one in that price range with the lowest mileage. It may sound obvious, but a lot of people wind up buying higher mileage cars because they are distracted by the fact that it’s “loaded”.

Customize Your Ride after Purchase

Want lots of toys like a sunroof and premium sound system? Get these things after you buy the car. You’ll save money up front, and you can customize your new ride until your heart’s content. Speaking of cars, if you’re short of cash and find you need a financial boost, come see CASH 1 for Auto Equity Loans.

Photograph of author Joseph Priebe

Joseph Priebe

Joseph Priebe takes pride in assisting audiences with his articles to help them make sound financial decisions.

With over ten years of experience writing financial content his goal at CASH 1 has always been creating engaging and easy-to-digest information for anyone searching for immediate or long-term monetary solutions.

When Joseph is not writing about personal finance, you can find him photographing the Southwest United States with his 4x5 Graflex Crown Graphic camera. He is based in Phoenix, Arizona.