When you have to spend money

New car on a budget

There comes a time when you just have to spend money. My car is 20yrs old and has had numerous issues. I spent $400 not 2 months ago to stop it overheating and now its doing it again. Its had its day. I was asked why i don't just fix it, well that would be like flogging a dead horse, pardon the saying but its true. I can keep fixing it but really it cost me $2500 to buy it and and has cost $3000 in repairs so far. Its gone. 

So what do I do next? Well there are several options. I can salary package through work but this locks me in for 4yrs and costs quite a bit as the car has to be under 3yrs old at the start. 

Option 2 is to get a personal loan and an older car. My dad suggested another cheapie but I don't want to spend alot on repairs again. 

My options so far seem to be a Nissan Dualis which was the car I looked at a few years ago. Its a great size,  reasonable price and actually has great boot space for an SUV. I was really surprised that SUV have no boot space, its quite odd! The other option is a Subaru Forester which is a great car but everyone else thinks so too and they can be hard to find at a good price. Both are around $7,000- $10,000 for a 10yr old car. Unfortunately I cant find any automatic drives, I drive a manual but around the city you have to shift gears continuously and it just gets annoying. 
Subaru Forester

The reason I'm going with an SUV style is that I often buy flatpacks or second hand goods and they just don't fit in most small model cars. Having a hatchback allows me to feed things in through the back. They also tend to have a better ANCAP rating which is their safety rating. Both of these cars have 5/5 stars and 5 airbags. The Forester is 4x4 so has that added bonus but as I don't go off road much its not essential but with both being higher off the ground it allows for off road driving occasionally.

Both also have 4/5 or higher for green rating and aren't bad on fuel economy. I don't want a giant 4x4 that costs alot to drive and is hard to park. Most of my driving is city based so it needs to be maneuverable. 

My biggest tips when buying a second hand car are:

  • Know your budget
  • Under 150,000km rather than age. This shows wear and tare.
  • Under 15yrs old
  • Test drive, alot of issues you can feel just by driving. Flog it in the test drive! put it through its paces.
  • Look for rust around doors and under the body. Do not buy a rusty car.
  • Check the heating and cooling
  • Look at reviews online. Youtube is great for these as you can see the size inside. 
  • Have  road safety check, NRMA does them in Australia for $50. 
  • Take into account what you will need it for in the next 5-10years which is how long most people keep cars. Will you have more children, kids sports, interstate driving?

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