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Old 05-26-2013, 01:19 PM
 
37,315 posts, read 59,839,259 times
Reputation: 25341

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We have bought a second home in FL and want to get car to keep there for fly-in visits vs renting one...
With hindsight we should have kept the SUV my husband traded earlier this year on his new Buick SUV...
he had 4 yr old Tahoe with all bells n whistles and about 60K miles--but absolutely no history of any problems with the car...

We have probably $20K to spend cash--and he doesn't want a car--SUV or crossover with some space to carry stuff...
Better to buy used car via Carmax or look for rental agencies selling their vehicles or at dealer with good reputation and buy there?

since we wouldn't be putting many miles on it--maybe even a lease to buy situation might be worth considering...most leases get punative if you go over the mile limit but that isn't likely to happen with this situation...

Havent' bought a used car is decades--even passed our cars down to our kids when they were in high school and college
so suggestions welcome...
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Old 05-26-2013, 01:30 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, Tx
8,238 posts, read 10,722,057 times
Reputation: 10224
My family and extended family has bought 6 cars from Carmax and has had excellent luck every time. Ironically the FIRST time I went to another dealer, I bought a car with an issue I cant get fixed. I WILL be going back to Carmax for my next car.
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Old 05-26-2013, 02:07 PM
 
50,723 posts, read 36,424,154 times
Reputation: 76538
I would do CarMax. I bought my car at Auto Lenders, which I believe is a NJ version of CarMax (all one-owner cars that come off leases). I loved the experience of no-haggle and will never go to a dealer for a used car as long as these places are around.
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:50 PM
 
Location: Lake Grove
2,752 posts, read 2,759,249 times
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I had two great experiences with Carmax in Connecticut and highly recommend them. They sell new and used.
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Old 05-26-2013, 06:56 PM
 
Location: Inland Empire, Calif
2,884 posts, read 5,639,612 times
Reputation: 2803
I vote for Carmax
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Old 05-26-2013, 07:06 PM
 
Location: Tucson
205 posts, read 729,549 times
Reputation: 378
I generally like Carmax but one of my friends hit a deer one night with his VW Tourag (sic - their SUV). Did $13,000 worth of damage and they wouldn't total it because it was only six months old and was well over $30K new. He had it fixed, drove it to Carmax the next day and they gave him an excellent price for it. The accident hadn't hit Carfax yet. It since made me very suspect of their supposed 100 point inspection as I'm assuming a good technician could spot $13,000 in body work. Of course, maybe they did after the fact and went and wholesaled it out after realizing it but I don't know.

I do know that you will save $2500-$3000 on a private sale for the same car but of course you don't get the warranty provided by Carmax and it involves the hassle of dealing with individuals and looking at multiple cars that you may not have time for.
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Old 05-26-2013, 07:18 PM
 
3,743 posts, read 13,698,751 times
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CarMax is generally a good source for used cars but since it doesn't negotiate on price, the trick is finding a car you want with the right price on it already. You can get great prices on cars from CarMax but you can also overpay. The trick is to pay attention to the open market and CarMax's prices and be able to spot the deal on the vehicle you want.
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Old 05-26-2013, 11:44 PM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
44,621 posts, read 61,584,987 times
Reputation: 125781
I bought 2 vehicles that came off lease from rental companies. They were low mileage (under 30,000 miles) and well maintained vehicles with remaining factory warranty. Never had any problems with them. I find AAA's auto service has some very good low mileage deals.
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Old 05-27-2013, 12:00 AM
 
1,976 posts, read 6,854,050 times
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I have bought a lot of used cars over years. Was never able to find a good deal in carmax. Their cars were overpriced, found quite a few with accidents (that did not show on carfax), poorly maintained and in need of repairs. They don't haggle, even if the car needs stuff. If I am buying 2-4 years old car, I prefer to get a certified pre-owned from the dealer (same make dealer). If I am buying an older car, I try to buy it from the owner and make sure they are not a curbside dealer. It takes me 10 minutes to know the owner, then I decide if the car is worth looking at.
Also, with any used car purchase, if you are not mechanically inclined, it is safer to pay YOUR mechanic to look it over, usually costs $100, money well spent.
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Old 05-27-2013, 08:46 AM
 
4,500 posts, read 12,338,870 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom4416 View Post
I generally like Carmax but one of my friends hit a deer one night with his VW Tourag (sic - their SUV). Did $13,000 worth of damage and they wouldn't total it because it was only six months old and was well over $30K new. He had it fixed, drove it to Carmax the next day and they gave him an excellent price for it. The accident hadn't hit Carfax yet. It since made me very suspect of their supposed 100 point inspection as I'm assuming a good technician could spot $13,000 in body work. Of course, maybe they did after the fact and went and wholesaled it out after realizing it but I don't know.

I do know that you will save $2500-$3000 on a private sale for the same car but of course you don't get the warranty provided by Carmax and it involves the hassle of dealing with individuals and looking at multiple cars that you may not have time for.
They probably did spot it, but unless there was re-welds, bad paint jobs, new core supports for the radiator etc etc, it doesn't necessarily lower the value a whole lot.

The 125 point inspection happens after they buy the car, at which point it goes to the techs, who look it over, they can then decide to retail or wholesale the vehicle based on condition.

On your friends car, it wouldn't be out of the question that the majority of the repairs were cosmetic, even at that price, and if that's the case, they'll still sell it and offer decent money, if the job was done right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sayantsi View Post
CarMax is generally a good source for used cars but since it doesn't negotiate on price, the trick is finding a car you want with the right price on it already. You can get great prices on cars from CarMax but you can also overpay. The trick is to pay attention to the open market and CarMax's prices and be able to spot the deal on the vehicle you want.
^^What he said. BMW's for instance, tends to be easy to find at CarMax at a very competitive cost, at least here in the TX market. I often see them selling for $4-8k less than the dealer advertised prices around here, if you add the ESP that CarMax offers, you still come in $2-4K under Dealer advertised price, and the MaxCare plan covers a hell of a lot more than a CPO plan through BMW does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 00molavi View Post
I have bought a lot of used cars over years. Was never able to find a good deal in carmax. Their cars were overpriced, found quite a few with accidents (that did not show on carfax), poorly maintained and in need of repairs. They don't haggle, even if the car needs stuff. If I am buying 2-4 years old car, I prefer to get a certified pre-owned from the dealer (same make dealer). If I am buying an older car, I try to buy it from the owner and make sure they are not a curbside dealer. It takes me 10 minutes to know the owner, then I decide if the car is worth looking at.
Also, with any used car purchase, if you are not mechanically inclined, it is safer to pay YOUR mechanic to look it over, usually costs $100, money well spent.
If the car needs work, they won't haggle on the price, but they will fix whatever is wrong with it, either before or after the purchase (customer preference dictates). They will sell vehicles with accident damage, like any other used car place, what they put in writing that they won't do is sell a vehicle with previous frame damage, meaning that if you buy one with it, they will refund you, the entire purchase price.

And in any case, you can have your mechanic look it over, that's why they offer a 5 day money back guarantee, in case you don't want the car, for whatever reason.

As for deals, late model BMW's are often competitive, same with Mercedes, Subarus are often sold at very reasonable prices, especially in markets where they're not as popular (TX comes to mind. ), and I just found a very reasonable price on a 2010 Hyundai Genesis, priced roughly $3k under the local market (I'm having the car transferred in), with local vehicles having more miles on them. Add on the MaxCare ESP for peace of mind, and it's still a very reasonable $1800 under local advertised prices for cars with 30k more miles on them.
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