1. It’s literally falling apart
Sometimes, your car is somehow holding itself together by duct tape, and a lot of hope. Every time you want to go for a ride somewhere, you’re praying that nothing’s going to blow up or die-off. You might be fine with it, but the people around you certainly won’t.
In fact, almost no one would be bold/insane enough in a car that looks like an assembled piece of junk. Too old cars always come with their load of problems and disgrace: insane amount of rust, a muffler held up with chains, no A/C, smelly seats and the list goes on…
This is caused either by not taking care of your car at all, or by using your car when it you should get rid of it. The second option is the most likely. Not only the car is unsafe to be in, but it’s simply not comfortable nor pleasant to ride. Have you even tried to start an old car, where you need to power the engine for at least 20 seconds before it starts roaring and spitting black smoke?
The pollution factor is important to take into account as well, since recent studies have shown that old cars release at least 50 percent more carbon dioxide and toxic gases. If your car is facing that situation, please consider doing more than selling it: literally destroy it, get rid of it. Because no one’s probably not even going to buy it, even for $100.
2. It’s becoming costly
Believe it or not, keeping an old, damaged car is way more expensive on the long run than simply buying a new one. Repairs need to be done usually monthly on such vehicles, and it’s getting more and more expensive over time.
At first, it’s easy and cheap stuff to fix. Maybe you can even get them repaired by yourself: changing the car rug, fixing the broken window handle, changing the wipers… But over time, more and more needs to be done: swapping out your old CD player for a new one, getting you’re A/C unit back on track… As you can see, this unfortunately foreshadow a serious issue: it’s getting more and more expensive, and instead of spending around a thousand per year for repairs, you can hit ten thousand quite easily.
The worst part is, you’re not only using money on repairs but on the performance. Your car, being old, is slower and requires more power to drive than recent car models. The fuel consumption is disastrous too, and you pay twice as much for gas, as the vehicle isn’t optimized at all.
However, if you simply change your car, you’ll be saving thousands on repairs, unnecessary trips, fuel… At some point, when you’re spending more than what the car in itself even cost you in the first place, get rid of it immediately.
Another aspect of this resides in the fact that as the years go by, your car parts inevitably become rarer, so more expensive. When cars aren’t manufactured anymore, some car parts slowly become unavailable on the market because they’re not relevant anymore. Because of this, some car parts over a few years can have their price multiplied by two or three!
Sell your car while the parts are still available on the market, or no one’s going to buy it.
3. It’s not meeting your needs anymore
Life is inconsistent, and you’ll be going through a lot of changes. For instance, you could move away to another country, find a job somewhere different or you could have a child.
Whatever the circumstances are, there are situations where a car simply isn’t needed anymore. The other possibility is that a new car is required for new things: having multiple children will inevitably lead you to buy a wider car to fit more people in it.
Maybe you taste in cars has changed as well. It happens to a lot of people; suddenly wanting to buy a vintage style car, or a brand-new sports car. If the place you work at changes thanks to a promotion, great! But this new place is now an hour away, and there’s no busses or streetcars to get there. Well, time to purchase a new car, that can offer a good performance at all times.
If your life basically changes in a way or another, consider switching your current vehicle for another one.
4. It’s still in a good condition
Especially concerning mileage, a car sees its price tremendously increased once it exceeds 100.000 kilometers. Make sure everything’s working all good, since the buyer will obviously be testing it out. Not only you’ll get a better price for it, but there’ll be less hassle, bargaining and time lost.
Mileage milestones are important to consider before selling it:
After driving off the parking lot, keep in mind your car has already lost 10% of its value at which your bought it.
After 9 months, your car depreciates on average 10% more and will keep doing so, as cars in general constantly lose value over time.
The 30,000-40,000 milestone is quite important, because most car warranties expire after reaching 36,000 miles. When that happens, usually after 3 years, a major scheduled maintenance is required, and will include a full checkup of brakes, tires, engine… Selling it after 36,000 miles is quite a bad idea, as you’ll have paid quite a lot for the checkup, and the car will have lost value.
The 60,000-70,000 is notable as well, when the timing belt requires a change, and other parts that got old after so much driving. This once more leads to a sizeable bill which means you’d want to sell your vehicle a few thousand miles before it happens.
Finally, the dreaded 100,000 miles. Considered for a lot as the “magic number”, where your car’s price absolutely crashes. Most people will tend to stray far from vehicle’s who’ve gone past the 100,000 as they’re considered as old and unreliable. Sell it before that happens, or consider keeping your car for the rest of your life.
5. Maybe you just want a new one
Although it’s rarely considered, this is a possibility. All these signs could not apply to you in particular, but you feel like you want a new car, just for the sake of it. Yes, it could be considered as a waste of money but hey, if your heart tells you to do so, why not? Whatever the reason is, always take a realistic approach and think twice before taking any decisions.