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Just to add that I agree.I am no Chet but I just bought my first USED car. A certified preowned 2011 MB e350 with 19000 miles in flawless condition(look at me !)Experience was easy... Traded in my 03 Infiniti G35 and was pleased with trade in $ receivedThrew 24K S at the transaction and I am left to finance 20K totalWent in thinking I was going to hate, hate all that wasted time and effort but came away pleasantly surprisedThe internet has made the buying experience a lot easierand oh...yes, I do like my new ride(because you care)

how many miles were on your G35 and how much did they offer on trade in? I just bought a BMW '03 and wanted to know what I was in for if I trade it in
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how about selling a used car without buying one?

have to sell my gf's 2010 challenger with less than 10k miles. she still owes about 19 large. same car with more miles was selling on carmax for about 24/25k a few weeks ago. not exaclty sure which features she has.

what kind of offer can i expect if im not buying?

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Just to add that I agree.I am no Chet but I just bought my first USED car. A certified preowned 2011 MB e350 with 19000 miles in flawless condition(look at me !)Experience was easy... Traded in my 03 Infiniti G35 and was pleased with trade in $ receivedThrew 24K S at the transaction and I am left to finance 20K totalWent in thinking I was going to hate, hate all that wasted time and effort but came away pleasantly surprisedThe internet has made the buying experience a lot easierand oh...yes, I do like my new ride(because you care)

how many miles were on your G35 and how much did they offer on trade in? I just bought a BMW '03 and wanted to know what I was in for if I trade it in
I had 125K on this thing.They pretty much gave me KBBI didn't even argue as I knew that some repairs were going to be in orderSerpentine belt,brakes....oh and my service engine light was onIt was in fair shape...they gave me $5200...I was psyched
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Heard a guy on the radio say something the other day that I couldn't believe was true but I guess it is....

He said many used cars are worth MORE now than they were worth a year ago. Huh??

Has the whole world gone crazy? Am I the only one who gives a #### about the rules? If I was in the market for a car now I would definitely be buying new.

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Heard a guy on the radio say something the other day that I couldn't believe was true but I guess it is....He said many used cars are worth MORE now than they were worth a year ago. Huh??Has the whole world gone crazy? Am I the only one who gives a #### about the rules? If I was in the market for a car now I would definitely be buying new.

that doesnt make sense.
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Depends.

My FIL drives around in a leased MB that the dealer desperately wants to get him out of.

They want to give him a new one for the same price as the used one

The reason is that the miles are so low that the dealer knows that they can make more $$ on the used car than they can on the new car.

I guess with all the info out there, the margins on new cars have shrunk considerably. There is less transparency and more intangibles for a dealer to get more margins on quality used cars

Just my :2cents:

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Heard a guy on the radio say something the other day that I couldn't believe was true but I guess it is....He said many used cars are worth MORE now than they were worth a year ago. Huh??Has the whole world gone crazy? Am I the only one who gives a #### about the rules? If I was in the market for a car now I would definitely be buying new.

that doesnt make sense.
Its not exactly true. A 2008 car is worth less today than it was last year. But a 3-year old car is worth more today than a 3-year old car last year.In a nutshell, when the bottom fell out of the economy in late 2008, new car sales dried up, and fleet purchases almost disappeared. In the used-car world, the most popular models are 3-year old cars - primarily as a result of a steady supply of vehicles coming off lease, and out of fleets. So with the drop in new car sales in 2008, there is a significant lack of "quality" used car inventory. Buyers are still looking, but dealers are having a tougher time finding the right inventory, and more dealers are looking for that inventory - driving the price to acquire the vehicle up, which drives the price to the consumer up.In many cases the advantage of buying used v. new is minimized to the point where it may make more sense, from a value stand point, to buy new.
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  • 5 months later...

Heard a guy on the radio say something the other day that I couldn't believe was true but I guess it is....He said many used cars are worth MORE now than they were worth a year ago. Huh??Has the whole world gone crazy? Am I the only one who gives a #### about the rules? If I was in the market for a car now I would definitely be buying new.

I bought my 2007 PT Cruiser Limited Edition for 8,100 2 years ago with 35,000 miles, from a dealer and that was the internet price. Several cars in that price range at the time. Can't find a 2007 PT Cruiser for that now with those miles now. To even be similar, I would have to downgrade to a touring edition. 10,000 is the best I can find now for the limited edition and that is with an extra 15,000 miles.
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  • 2 years later...

I know this thread is about used cars but I have a new car buying question for you car negotiating pros: What is the wiggle room on the MSRP for a new car? Say I'm looking at a car that has an MSRP of 30k, what am I likely be able to get the dealer down to?

I never look at MSRP. I always guide off of invoice. -QG

Does "invoice price" equal "wholesale price"?

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Is it worth paying less than $3k for a car? Trying to help an aunt of mine find a car while on a super tight budget. She just lost her Ford Focus after a bad accident. :sad:

Edited by wazoo11
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Is it worth paying less than $3k for a car? Trying to help an aunt of mine find a car while on a a super tight budget. She just lost her Ford Focus after a bad accident. :sad:

Even though I can afford a new car easily, I ONLY look for cars under 3k. I really like being able to not care about my car. If someone opens their door into mine in the parking lot, oopsie, whatever. I appreciate not caring about that. I got enough stuff to care about.

I make sure the tires, brakes, and engine are all reliable, but absolutely LOVE driving older model cars with 100-150k miles on them. Cheap to fix, cheap to maintain, and just cheap in general, while still reliable and good on gas.

For example. I own a couple cars, one of which is a 1999 saturn with 80k miles on it. The KBB price on it is barely 2 grand. Car is pretty much like-new (at least it would be if the year was 2001).

Lots of good older used reliable stuff out there. Like I said, I got enough to worry about, rather not have to care if my damn car gets a little scratch

Edited by ghostguy123
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Is it worth paying less than $3k for a car? Trying to help an aunt of mine find a car while on a a super tight budget. She just lost her Ford Focus after a bad accident. :sad:

Even though I can afford a new car easily, I ONLY look for cars under 3k. I really like being able to not care about my car. If someone opens their door into mine in the parking lot, oopsie, whatever. I appreciate not caring about that. I got enough stuff to care about.

I make sure the tires, brakes, and engine are all reliable, but absolutely LOVE driving older model cars with 100-150k miles on them. Cheap to fix, cheap to maintain, and just cheap in general, while still reliable and good on gas.

For example. I own a couple cars, one of which is a 1999 saturn with 80k miles on it. The KBB price on it is barely 2 grand. Car is pretty much like-new (at least it would be if the year was 2001).

Lots of good older used reliable stuff out there. Like I said, I got enough to worry about, rather not have to care if my damn car gets a little scratch

I'm the same way. I had a '94 Ranger and that thing was bullet proof. I drove it for about 5 years with no issues. The yearly oil change and new brakes were about all I did to it.

To the point though, there's lots of good vehicles for under $3000. They won't be pretty for the most part but they'll be reliable.

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I'm the same way. I had a '94 Ranger and that thing was bullet proof. I drove it for about 5 years with no issues. The yearly oil change and new brakes were about all I did to it.

To the point though, there's lots of good vehicles for under $3000. They won't be pretty for the most part but they'll be reliable.

Right on. Some people are ok paying many extra thousands of dollars for comfort, be it the car itelf being more comfortable, or the comfort of other people seeing you drive a nice car.

Me, I don't give a ####. If it is reliable and safe, and doesn't look horrific (such as stupid paint colors or other randome dumb stuff), then I am good with it.

I bought a 1998 toyota Rav4 like 4 years ago for $3000 (traded my car at the time worth about $1,000 plus 2 grand cash for it). I have put like 50,000 miles on it since then, and put maybe a grand into it at the shop(fuel filter, brakes, tires, power steering line, battery, alternator), and can easily sell it right now for 2 grand or more. I will take a 4 years rental for less than 2 grand, and a Rav4 isnt the best way to go economical either.

Chevy cavalier, saturn, older civic (buy it, drive it for a year, then sell it for what you paid for it).

I tend to drive between 15-20 thousand miles per year, and don't feel like pissing away money on a new car only to put a lot of miles on it and devalue the car by 10 grand after a few short years.

Edited by ghostguy123
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  • 1 year later...
On ‎8‎/‎7‎/‎2014 at 11:24 PM, ghostguy123 said:

Even though I can afford a new car easily, I ONLY look for cars under 3k. I really like being able to not care about my car. If someone opens their door into mine in the parking lot, oopsie, whatever. I appreciate not caring about that. I got enough stuff to care about.

I make sure the tires, brakes, and engine are all reliable, but absolutely LOVE driving older model cars with 100-150k miles on them. Cheap to fix, cheap to maintain, and just cheap in general, while still reliable and good on gas.

For example. I own a couple cars, one of which is a 1999 saturn with 80k miles on it. The KBB price on it is barely 2 grand. Car is pretty much like-new (at least it would be if the year was 2001).

Lots of good older used reliable stuff out there. Like I said, I got enough to worry about, rather not have to care if my damn car gets a little scratch

do you take a mechanic with you when purchasing a car under 3k?

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14 minutes ago, VA703 said:

do you take a mechanic with you when purchasing a car under 3k?

No.  I know SOME stuff about what to look for, and just as (if not more) important is assessing WHO you are buying the car from.

If a car is 12 years old but the current owner has had it for the past year and put 10 thousand miles on it, and can show a couple maintenance receipts, they speak proper english, don't look drugged out, don't have 5 broken down cars in their yard, are wearing normal clothing, have teeth, and can answer basic question then I don't have to worry about the maintenance of the car for the first 11 years.  If the car ran well the last year and 10,000 miles, and they did oil changes and things work, then I would feel comfortable taking the chance the car will be good to go for a while longer with proper routine maintenance. 

Even better is buying cars from people you know who like to upgrade their vehicles a lot.  My current neighbor has a 2010 Ford Edge and wants to get a new car because her check engine light came on.  My other neighbor has a 1990 truck as a daily driver.  There are many, MANY more of the former types of people out there than the latter. 

Not sure if this is the thread where someone mentioned that carmax place, but my god are they overpriced.  Why in god's name would you pay an extra 3 grand for a car from that place when you can just buy it from a private party?  Geeze, if the engine goes you can pretty much replace it for that extra 3 grand you paid to carmax.  Even worse if you are trading in a car to do it.

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17 minutes ago, VA703 said:

do you take a mechanic with you when purchasing a car under 3k?

I know this wasn't directed at me but I thought would weigh in since I've bought my share of used vehicles. 

No I don't. There's a few things that I look for when taking a test drive. The main things to look for are: Does it easily start? Is there any wobble or shake when you have it at highway speeds? Does the transmission clunk or shift hard *usually between 1st and 2nd*? How hot does the engine get (look at the gauge) when you're driving around after the highway? Is there any strange "knocking" sounds coming from the engine? Or just strange sounds in general?

The other thing that's key is the Carproof. You want to make sure that the vehicle doesn't have a Salvage title. Also, you should stay away from vehicle that have had multiple owners over the last 5 years. Try to avoid vehicles that have been insured in a different state recently. Ideally, you're buying from an old lady or old man. Then next best person to buy from is a kid (20 or under) who is selling the vehicle that his parents got for him. The parents likely kept up on the maintenance "to keep little Johnny safe" but he has left Big Gulp stains and there is body damage from where he backed into or "bumped" into something. These are the 2 groups I've noticed that I've bought solid vehicles from. Young families are typically the worst. They're selling for a reason. These are just my experiences though. 

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A lot of recent comments that are good.

I also tend to purchase cars under $5,000 or so.  Honda, Toyota exclusively.   Very good advice to look for salvage titles, as they are very bad with electrical problems.  Also, check with weld points under the hood.  This usually means the car was on an accident, which normally have bad service records.

I am of the mindset that if a car gives you several years of low-maintenance service, the money you save on car payments/insurance/repairs(either the money spent for repairs or the time spent fixing yourself) can be best used on purchasing rental properties and low cost index funds.

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Just bought a 2002 ford ranger for $1,200.  92k miles.  A/C works.  Basically new tires.  New battery.  Regular cab, long bed.  Automatic.  Seems to run pretty well, drove it over 10 miles at all speeds before buying. 

Bought it off the local facebook classifieds from a retired guy.  Super nice.  He looked genuinely sad he was selling it..  He got himself a brand new Jeep for his retirement present to himself. 

Kelly Blue Book "fair" condition price for private party sale for this truck is over $3,000.  The one side of the bed is rusted up pretty good, but I could (probably wont) replace the panel for couple hundred bucks. 

I will probably keep it for a year or two and sell it for more than I just bought it for.  :excited:

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6 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

Just bought a 2002 ford ranger for $1,200.  92k miles.  A/C works.  Basically new tires.  New battery.  Regular cab, long bed.  Automatic.  Seems to run pretty well, drove it over 10 miles at all speeds before buying. 

Bought it off the local facebook classifieds from a retired guy.  Super nice.  He looked genuinely sad he was selling it..  He got himself a brand new Jeep for his retirement present to himself. 

Kelly Blue Book "fair" condition price for private party sale for this truck is over $3,000.  The one side of the bed is rusted up pretty good, but I could (probably wont) replace the panel for couple hundred bucks. 

I will probably keep it for a year or two and sell it for more than I just bought it for.  :excited:

That is a steal. Mid 90s Rangers are going from $1500-$2000 with double the miles around here.  Most are sticks with body rust as well.  Well done.

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  • 2 weeks later...

This may sound like a no brainer but since I have not purchased many used cars I will ask:   Is 171,000 miles on a vehicle too many to be concerned about?   Here a the very few known details of the particular car in question:

2007 Nissan Altima

171,000 miles

2 owners, the current for only the past year (loves the car but wants to get a SUV or pick up).

Current owner keeps good care of everything, so I am not too concerned with up keep.

Asking price is $4,700.

I have not looked at the car yet but photos seem to show the exterior and interior to be in good, clean condition.

The miles seem high for a 2007?  But in this day and age maybe that is not as many miles as it seems?  The car will need to last the next 5-6 years to get kid through college...

Looking for a bit of advice if I should waste my time (or he sellers).    Obviously need to drive, maybe get a car fax report too.

Thanks in advance for any input.

 

 

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$4,700 seems rather high for that Nissan, and far too risky for a 9 year old car with 170k miles, especially if this isn't a vehicle owned by someone you know who takes great care of their cars.  Looking on KBB (though not knowing all the specifics) a good condition car like this is maybe $4,000, and barring a somewhat unusual circumstance I will NEVER buy a car at "good" condition price, only fair or less. 

This guy likely bought this car a year ago for less than he is currently asking, did nothing do it, and will now also profit. 

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Good stuff Ghost, I'll add what I do. Your system is likely cheaper but I like just a slightly fancier ride. My deal is mostly Honda Accord Coupe EX, like them about 5-7 years old, 60k-75k miles but I'm sure you will show me where I am doing this wrong. 

Let's say I buy one for $10,000 cash. I drive it for 4 years and 60,000 miles. I sell it for $6k and I am out $4k for 48 months or less than $100 a month. Go out and buy a similar car again. I have been driving Hondas for the last 20 years, can't bring myself to buy anything else. Wife loves the Subarus. Luckily both retain value pretty well. 

But you are talking beaters. I beat the hell out of cars because they can handle it, never had luck on American cars.  

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3 hours ago, Ministry of Pain said:

Good stuff Ghost, I'll add what I do. Your system is likely cheaper but I like just a slightly fancier ride. My deal is mostly Honda Accord Coupe EX, like them about 5-7 years old, 60k-75k miles but I'm sure you will show me where I am doing this wrong. 

Let's say I buy one for $10,000 cash. I drive it for 4 years and 60,000 miles. I sell it for $6k and I am out $4k for 48 months or less than $100 a month. Go out and buy a similar car again. I have been driving Hondas for the last 20 years, can't bring myself to buy anything else. Wife loves the Subarus. Luckily both retain value pretty well. 

But you are talking beaters. I beat the hell out of cars because they can handle it, never had luck on American cars.  

Your way is fine.  My way is cheaper, but your way is nicer and more reliable.  Overall though, your way is cheap.  Like a really cheap lease. 

We still always have a "nice" family car.  Currently the 2015 Odyssey we bought last year, before that was a 10 year old Rav4, and before that was the 2004 Passat my wife bought after she graduated college and got her first job.  The Odyssey was a really stupid purchase IMO, but we had a baby on the way, daughter in soccer, and my wife #####ed and moaned like crazy (which she basically never does) so I caved on that one.  At least it is a really nice, so there's that. 

For "my" car I go the beater route.  A lot of the time the car is nice enough to not be considered a beater, but I get it cheap enough to where I can sell it for about the same a year later, sometimes two years later.  The truck I just got I might be able to sell for more than I paid for it like 3-4 years from now.

I may actually start going your route soon, but probably a civic. 

Edited by ghostguy123
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37 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

Your way is fine.  My way is cheaper, but your way is nicer and more reliable.  Overall though, your way is cheap.  Like a really cheap lease. 

We still always have a "nice" family car.  Currently the 2015 Odyssey we bought last year, before that was a 10 year old Rav4, and before that was the 2004 Passat my wife bought after she graduated college and got her first job.  The Odyssey was a really stupid purchase IMO, but we had a baby on the way, daughter in soccer, and my wife #####ed and moaned like crazy (which she basically never does) so I caved on that one.  At least it is a really nice, so there's that. 

For "my" car I go the beater route.  A lot of the time the car is nice enough to not be considered a beater, but I get it cheap enough to where I can sell it for about the same a year later, sometimes two years later.  The truck I just got I might be able to sell for more than I paid for it like 3-4 years from now.

I may actually start going your route soon, but probably a civic. 

Best car I ever owned(memory wise) was a 1990 manual Civic EX Hatch, white with black tint, heavy bass, smooth ride. Bought it used of course. After that I had a Prelude, remember those? Then it was on to Accords and I have been driving them for 15 years. 

I can't have cars that break down on me, I'm not mechanically inclined and so I end up shelling money out at garages and the costs go up. I love used Hondas 5 yrs, 60/75k miles, if I was smart I would drive them 12-18 months and dump them before they hit 100k but I end up loving the car. There are other quality cars and eventually I might start allowing myself to go up a little bit into the $15k-$20k range but I would still want to sell them and limit my costs. 

Ur right, cheap lease. I have an Accord right now, had it 5 yrs, bought it with 70k miles, it has over 125k now, silver EX coupe, 2005. Runs great and it's paid for. I could sell it easily for $6k+ right now. Wife has a Subaru Impreza hatch 4 yrs/45k miles, she has to have a newer car. It's worth something like $10k, I keep urging her to trade it in but she doesn't listen to me. 

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4 hours ago, DaBeers said:

This may sound like a no brainer but since I have not purchased many used cars I will ask:   Is 171,000 miles on a vehicle too many to be concerned about?   Here a the very few known details of the particular car in question:

2007 Nissan Altima

171,000 miles

2 owners, the current for only the past year (loves the car but wants to get a SUV or pick up).

Current owner keeps good care of everything, so I am not too concerned with up keep.

Asking price is $4,700.

I have not looked at the car yet but photos seem to show the exterior and interior to be in good, clean condition.

The miles seem high for a 2007?  But in this day and age maybe that is not as many miles as it seems?  The car will need to last the next 5-6 years to get kid through college...

Looking for a bit of advice if I should waste my time (or he sellers).    Obviously need to drive, maybe get a car fax report too.

Thanks in advance for any input.

 

 

171,000 miles on a front wheel drive car-CV joints been replaced? Does that transmission
still shift smooth?. Starter easy to get to? Any rust by the suspension mounts? I'm the guy
that only buys used and that mileage is high (the price even higher). If the catalytic converter
isn't clogged it's not far from it.

You can find a car for $4.700 to last 5-6 years without that high of a threat of a major component
going bad. Most used cars have good clean ex/interior. It's the stuff you can't see (mechanical)
that's going to cost you.

 

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6 minutes ago, nightmare said:

Keeping the car for a year is a concern-Is he going to take a sales tax hit on another
car to get rid of this one?

The tax issue is something I definitely factor in.  Tax is a big reason I do the cheaper end cars, and lots of times both parties can agree to say the sales price was lower than it actually was which is pretty easy to get away with when you are talking about 10 year old vehicles. 

If MOP is going the every 4-5 year route, it's not a huge deal to shell out 700 bucks each time.  Doing that every year would be a bit much. 

Question about private party trades.  If I trade a car worth $5,000 to someone for a truck worth $5,000 for a completely even swap, will either of us have to pay tax?

I know if you get $5,000 for a trade with a dealership then you will pay the sales tax based on a price 5 grand lower.  Just not sure how it works for private party trades.

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39 minutes ago, nightmare said:

171,000 miles on a front wheel drive car-CV joints been replaced? Does that transmission
still shift smooth?. Starter easy to get to? Any rust by the suspension mounts? I'm the guy
that only buys used and that mileage is high (the price even higher). If the catalytic converter
isn't clogged it's not far from it.

You can find a car for $4.700 to last 5-6 years without that high of a threat of a major component
going bad. Most used cars have good clean ex/interior. It's the stuff you can't see (mechanical)
that's going to cost you.

 

As someone who just got rid of a 2005 Maxima because the catalytic converter went bad and wouldn't pass smog in CA, definitely find out about this. No one sold mine aftermarket, and I would've had to purchase from the dealer, at $2k, just to keep it as a beater for my 16-year-old.

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  • 2 years later...
14 minutes ago, Big Blue Wrecking Crew said:

:blackdot:

Will take a spin through the thread, but, based on last post, looking to see if anyone has more recent updates/tips to offer? Son just got his license, so beginning the hunt...

Same here. :wall::blackdot: 

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On 10/1/2018 at 5:04 PM, Big Blue Wrecking Crew said:

:blackdot:

Will take a spin through the thread, but, based on last post, looking to see if anyone has more recent updates/tips to offer? Son just got his license, so beginning the hunt...

Buy a cheap/reliable car with dents and scratches all over it.  That is so much better than buying an expensive/reliable car that is about to have dents and scratches all over it.

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  • 8 months later...

I’m currently looking for a used car. Any ideas on how much I can realistically expect to be taken off the sticker price if the car is already categorized as a “great deal” on Car Gurus? Current price is about 13k. Gurus says it’s 2500 below average price. 

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20 minutes ago, Cjw_55106 said:

I’m currently looking for a used car. Any ideas on how much I can realistically expect to be taken off the sticker price if the car is already categorized as a “great deal” on Car Gurus? Current price is about 13k. Gurus says it’s 2500 below average price. 

More details are needed. What is the car, options, and location?

Edited by MTskibum
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  • 6 months later...

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