Thursday, June 26, 2008

I need your help

I don't know what to 2003 kia sedona is beginning to have issues...seems I have an electrical problem...worst case it's the alternater, best case it's just a car goes dead after sitting for the weekend and I have to get a boost...not cute at seven-thirty in the morning...I have an issue with my wheels (can't figure if it's the tires, but I had to get a wheel alignment)...and it cost about sixty dollars to fill the tank...and my warranty ends next thursday...
so my question...should I trade my car in (for peanuts I might add) and get a new car or truck or should I pour money into this car...btw, I have fifty-seven thousand miles...
the other issue is that being the only driver in the family I'm also struggling with whether to buy another van (which I really can't afford) that seats seven or just go with a smaller car/truck and rent when we are going somewhere...bearmaiden seems to have a friend who doesn't mind driving and choclahontas's babydaddy bought a car and is eager to drive...which, if all goes well, means I only have to worry about chocolate, MMB and the parents on most occasions...
what to do? I need opinions...and if anyone knows a good car salesman/woman who can give me a bargain let me know...also is it cheaper to buy a car outside of NYC? cause I will drive to get a good deal...ALSO I don't mind buying a truck cause I banking on gas prices going down in the next year, and the trucks are CHEAP right now...
what you think...


Fat Lady said...

Well, you know I got a van last year. It's my first new car. Every other car I have ever owned has been at least 10 years old and had close to, 100,000 miles on it, if not more.

So, to me, a 5 year old car with less than 60,000 miles on it is practically brand new!

I bought the car I have now with the intent of keeping it for at least 10 years, if not longer.

That said, I am seriously considering selling it and getting something else if gas prices don't come down in the next year. $50 for a little over half a tank (and that's at NJ $4.04 a gallon prices) just isn't cutting it for me.

If I were you, I would only buy new if I was planning on getting something smaller or a hybrid. Buying a new van just doesn't seem worth it to me. You would spend more in payments than you would in repair costs for the van you have.

At least that's what I think. But that's a good way to decide. Think about how much money you would have to spend on a new van (or any new car) do you think you'd spend that much on repairs in the next 5 years? If not, then keep what you have. If you think you spend that much on repairs, then buy new - if you're going to spend the money, then you might as well have something new and shiny.

As for the space issue and being able to tote people around. Well, I got the Sienna because I figured with 2 kids I had a future of always having at least 4 kids in the car (each kids totes a friend along)plus myself and either the Bull or a friend for me - so 2 adults. A minimum of 6 people most of the time just seemed to warrant a van.

But, again, I regret it now because the thing just sucks up gas. If I had it to do all over, I'd have gone for the Prius, or at least the Highlander hybrid. The Highlander sits 7 but that extra seat in the back is teeny-tiny - not at all comfortable for adults or even big kids, like Sugar.

OK, so you might want to consider a hybrid, or a smaller mini-van like the Mazda5 or I know Kia makes one, but I can't think of the name right now.

But I think it all really comes down to a few basics. Mostly is the cost of a new car greater or lesser than the cost of repairing the old one over the next few years.

Also, do you really want or need to tote people around? Do you do it because you like to or because you feel obligated to? Now may be the time to reevaluate your role as family driver and decide if it's what you want. If you don't getting a smaller car could be the answer.

Lastly, I would look into selling your car on your own rather than trading it in. You can probably get a better price selling it than trading it. Well, maybe. Most people are probably looking for smaller cars these days, so you might have a hard time selling.

Sorry, I don't have any car buying advice in terms of someone to go to.

I did do a decent amount of shopping around when I bought my car last year. Once I narrowed down my make and model I looked around at a few different dealers. I got similar prices in Queens and further out on Long Island. Another dealer in LI tried to get a lot more out of us. So I'm not sure if it makes a huge difference based solely on in the city or out. But it definitely helps to talk to different people to get an idea of how low they are willing to go. And they will really jump through hoops when they sense you're on your way to another dealer.

We were practically signing papers with one dealer when two others were calling trying to come up with better offers.

But I hear you're an expert at handling dealers, so you don't need any advice there!

The Bear Maiden said...

Yah, I dunno. I agree with Fat Lady that you could use this time to re-evaluate your family driver role, cuz you don't HAVE to drive folks around...that's what trains are for.

I would say see if you can out how Kias fare at the 5-10 year mark.