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Financial Topics & Tips

 

Repair or Replace: 

Is it time to say goodbye to your old car?

 

Most of us find ourselves in a losing battle at some point trying to keep an old car on the road, even with the most conscientious maintenance and determined repairs. Figuring out when to say good-bye to your old car is a highly personal decision. You may have a strong sentimental attachment to your car. You know its history and how it’s been maintained, and you know what costs and maintenance to expect in the months ahead. Still, most of us justifiably lose patience in the face of repeated breakdowns and bills.

Consider these factors when deciding if it is time to replace your old car rather than repair it:

1.  Your maintenance costs are higher than 50% of your car’s value. If you’re essentially re-buying your car every other month, you’re wasting your money and it’s time to look at options.

2.  You’re due for a big repair or major maintenance. If your car’s value has shrunk and you know you have a major expenditure coming up, you may want to trade up now. Don’t hope against hope that a big infusion of cash will solve your issues. Again, consider whether the money you’re about to spend on your car represents more than half of its current value. If so, it’s time to go.

3. Your car has become unsafe or unreliable. When getting from Point A to Point B has become a roll of the dice, it’s time to get a new vehicle. Plus if your car can’t pass a safety inspection or run reliably, that’s a bad sign. Even intermittent mechanical issues can become liabilities if they risk stranding you or your loved ones in the wrong place at the wrong time.

4. You can take advantage of special financing rates, making it affordable to upgrade. Replacing your old car with a newer vehicle is a great solution for a never-ending stream of breakdowns and repairs. TTCU has low rate auto loans available that could bring a new car or newer-year car into reach.

Remember the value of a new car drops by 20 percent the moment you drive it off the car lot, according to Edmunds.com. That means buying a used car sometimes makes more sense. Because you don’t want to trade one set of mechanical troubles for another, look for a certified pre-owned car from a dealer. You’ll get a warranty that gives you peace of mind and protection for your wallet.

The Tennessee Credit Union is committed to helping you reach your financial goals by providing the tools, services and assistance you need.  When it's time to upgrade your car, a TTCU loan officer help you make the right financing decisions. Click here to learn more about the options available or call (800) 622-2535 or email us at memberservices@ttcu.org.