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Discussion Starter #1
DH and I are trying to decide if we should keep repairing our car or get a minivan.<br><br>
We have a 2000 Maxima with 143K miles and it is in need of $2500 of repairs, it is worth $4K total according to KBB. $500 in immediate, cannot put off, $1000 is should do now and the rest is maintenance that we will need to do if we are going to take any serious road trips in it (we will be taking 2 long trips in Sept.) Last summer we spent $1700 repairing it, plus a few more minor things throughout the year.<br><br>
We have been looking at used Honda Odysseys. Online we have seen Ex-L (which is the model DH desires) 2006-2007, with 35K-45K miles for about $22K. If we get $4K for our trade in our payments would be about $350. Now I don't know how trade ins work, Edmunds.com estimated our trade in value at $4K, is that really what they will give us if it needs these repairs? Do they look at the car before they offer a trade in value? OUr only money down right now is the trade in. Financing would be through Penfed at 3.99%, so not bad.<br><br>
So what would you do in this situation, buy a minivan or keep the money pit? BTW, we have to put Ultimate gas in the car, the maxima and the minivan get the same gas mileage. We are only thinking minivan because we have a great commuter car already (civic hybrid), baby #2 is almost here, and DH carpools to work with 2-3 other people so that means when he drives he is going to have to take out at least 1 baby seat every time unless we have a minivan.
 

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KBB has 3 different values. Which one did you look at? Private Party, Suggested Retail, or Trade In? I've always found them to be pretty acurate. If there are a lot of repairs it sounds like the vehicle is in "fair" condition. I would look at KBB for the "trade in" value at "fair" condition and see what you get. Fair condition would account for repairs needed so the trade value should be close to what they'd give you at a dealership.<br><br>
Do you have a carmax around you? I've heard they're pretty decent.<br><br>
I personally wouldn't take on the new vehicle. Right now you're paying about $200 a month for repairs. If you get a payment you're now paying $350 + higher insurance (I'm guessing). Just what I would do. (And have done. There are about 5 inches between the two kid's seats in the back.)<br><br><br>
ETA: Why can't he drive the civic hybrid when carpooling?
 

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I'd keep nursing the Maxima along and drive it till the tires fall off. We were in a similar situation 2 summers ago with our 1995 Toyota Corolla. We did $1000+ in repairs with the plans of keeping it for maybe a year. Last summer we thought "This is it" b/c the AC went out, but clever DH resurrected it by using some Freon in a Bottle from Walmart. Granted he had to do it a couple times during the summer but it was only $25 a pop. Much cheaper then a new car. Just this winter we thought the transmission was going but DH did it again. He googled the problem, found the solution, bought the $100 part, installed it himself, and the car is running better then ever. Yeah for smart hubbies! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy">: Yeah for Corollas ... they take a lickin' and keep on tickin'!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>dsaucone</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/13568490"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">KBB has 3 different values. Which one did you look at? Private Party, Suggested Retail, or Trade In? I've always found them to be pretty acurate. If there are a lot of repairs it sounds like the vehicle is in "fair" condition. I would look at KBB for the "trade in" value at "fair" condition and see what you get. Fair condition would account for repairs needed so the trade value should be close to what they'd give you at a dealership.<br><br>
Do you have a carmax around you? I've heard they're pretty decent.<br><br>
I personally wouldn't take on the new vehicle. Right now you're paying about $200 a month for repairs. If you get a payment you're now paying $350 + higher insurance (I'm guessing). Just what I would do. (And have done. There are about 5 inches between the two kid's seats in the back.)<br><br><br><br>
ETA: Why can't he drive the civic hybrid when carpooling?</div>
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The civic has to have 2 car seats in it as well, so even less room for people to sit. (we both work and often have to juggle who is going to pick up the kids from day care.)He is looking at taking a car seat out 1-2 times a week to car pool if we keep the maxima. If all goes like it did with DS, the baby will outgrow the infant seat in 6 months, so that means taking a rear facing convertible seat out 1-2 times a week, not that fun. And more room for error, since it will be done so many times.<br><br>
I looked at KBB again and the 'Fair' value for trade in is $3375. We also do not have the $2500+ in cash to pay for these repairs, most of it is going to have to go on a credit card. The repairs on the maxima are more than some other cars, we had to have the computer 'reset' last summer and some other things that only the dealer could do, that is why I call it the money pit.
 

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To just answer the question in the thread title, the simple answer is, when you're spending in repairs almost as much as you'd be spending on a new(er) car loan.... And consider how much time the car is spending in the shop being repaired, b/c you can say you're only spending $200/month (over the course of a year, for example) to keep the old car running, but if it's in the shop for a week or two most months, that's "costing" you too. You're then paying for a car you don't have access to. So maybe that's more like $400/month (you're paying $200 in repairs but you only have the car half the time). If the van's payments were $400 a month or just a little more, it's worth it at that point to get the van and have a reliable car.
 

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According to Consumer Reports you should get rid of the car when it needs repairs totalling more than half it's worth.
 

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for the sake of the car seat harrassment alone I would get something else! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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You can also look at it like this. New car $350/mo * 12 months = $4200. If your used car is costing nearly that in repairs a year, its definitely not worth owning.
 

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Id go for a bit older used car though. $22,000 for a car is allot if your having trouble fixing the older one. Id get something less then $10,000 ( you can still find a used Honda O for that...just not as new)<br><br>
We have a 01 Honda and its been great!
 

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I've seen used Odysseys with a bit higher miles for under 10 grand on CL, I'd personally keep looking , but I have a severe hatred of car payments.
 

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honestly? I depends on the condition of the vehicles and the nature of the repair. An AC compressor on a ten year old car is a whole lot different from replacing the climate control module for the third time, even though both are an $800 repair. My Saturn has 200k miles on it. Last year we did new struts and shocks, new tires, and new front sealed bearings. Total cost? Probably $1200. This year we have to do cv axles and a clutch. It won't be cheap either. But you know what? We don't have a monthly payment, A tank of gas is $18 and goes 360-410 miles. And after the clutch, I more than likely won't have a big repair until the motor finally gives out, which given I run full synthetic oil is going to be a while.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>p1gg1e</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/13569807"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Id go for a bit older used car though. $22,000 for a car is allot if your having trouble fixing the older one. Id get something less then $10,000 ( you can still find a used Honda O for that...just not as new)<br><br>
We have a 01 Honda and its been great!</div>
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We have a 2004 civic hybrid (paid off) and the idea is to not have 2 cars near the same year/mileage, less likely they will need to be replaced at the same time. Does that make sense? We are coming up short this summer because of some unexpected taxes, so we do have money for a monthly car payment (although it has been nice NOT having one.)<br><br>
It would be interesting to go back and figure out how much the Maxima has cost us to repair. DH has all the records. It is expensive, much more so than the civic. Just a new set of tires is 2-3 times the price of tires for the civic. For the record, I was against buying this car from the beginning. DH's parents gave us $10K towards a car in 2001 and I wanted to go buy a car (civic or accord) for $10K and have no payment. DH was just starting his job and I had not yet started working after college. He HAD to have the maxima, the fancy one. I could not convince his ego to let go. I will be sooo glad to get rid of the car!
 

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Last time we wer ein a situation like this, we had a funny thing happened...we were driving our old subaru that was getting too expensive to repair in the snow and we had one of those 5 o'clock news-worthy slow ping pong down the hill crashes. We were fine but the car was totalled. We got at least $1,000 more from the insurance company than we would have if we sold the car. Good luck, I guess!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>tinahiggins</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/13570036"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">honestly? I depends on the condition of the vehicles and the nature of the repair. An AC compressor on a ten year old car is a whole lot different from replacing the climate control module for the third time, even though both are an $800 repair. My Saturn has 200k miles on it. Last year we did new struts and shocks, new tires, and new front sealed bearings. Total cost? Probably $1200. This year we have to do cv axles and a clutch. It won't be cheap either. But you know what? We don't have a monthly payment, A tank of gas is $18 and goes 360-410 miles. And after the clutch, I more than likely won't have a big repair until the motor finally gives out, which given I run full synthetic oil is going to be a while.</div>
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I know this is completely off topic, but did you have anything happen to the a/c? I know a few people with saturns (including my own) that the a/c has gone out. I know, I love mine. It's been 2 years since I've had a payment and I spent 1200 last year on repairs (the first repairs I've ever had on the thing at 160,000 miles).<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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I would go with a third option- a cheaper minivan or wagon. We got a 2005 sienna in good condition with 50k miles for under 15k. I would do that, IIWY.
 

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My hubby came home with a "new" pickup today. Our old one ('94 Dodge) has been sitting in the shop since it conked out last week. The shop cannot find out what is wrong. They think its computer related but cannot locate which wire is faulty. So far, we are up to $950 in labor/repairs already. Truck is probably only worth $2300. DH found a '02 pickup with almost 100K miles and paid $7000 for it. He is going to tell the shop to keep the other piece of junk in exchange for the bill.<br><br>
I wasnt exactly pleased that he did this as we could use the cash for other bills but I guess at a certain point, enough is enough.
 

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I had a 10 year old mirage that I pretty much drove into the ground. Enough was enough when I had to replace the motor cabling, then died two weeks later. 3 mechanics couldn't pinpoint the problem. I sold it for parts and bought a new(ish) 06 Corolla. Sure, with the mirage I didn't have a car payment, but when I can't use it, it's costing me money because I need my car to work. So car in shop = losing money. So I ditched it.
 
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