Opinion: Buy a Used Car Rather Than Finance a Nearly New One

March 21st, 2023 by

The excitement of driving a brand-new car is certainly appealing. However, when it comes to the long-term financial commitment and cost of ownership, buying a gently used vehicle is often the smarter decision financially. You don’t want to be ensnared in debt, especially if you already have a mortgage, student loans, or other types of financial commitments.

That being said, people are different and have different needs, so it’s important to consider all the pros and cons of buying a used car versus financing a nearly new one. Here are considerations to think about when comparing these two options.

Key Takeaways

Buying a used car may be the right financial decision if you don’t want to be overly burdened by long-term debt. Here are good reasons to pursue this option:

  • You can get a lot more car for your money if you buy a used one.
  • Used cars often come with less expensive insurance premiums since they cost less than new cars.
  • You can research consumer reports before buying to make sure the car is reliable and in good condition.
  • On the other hand, you may want to finance a nearly new car if you are looking for more luxury or features that a used car does not offer.

Cost of Ownership:

Used cars are generally less expensive than nearly new vehicles. Their depreciation value is usually lower, meaning they don’t lose as much of their initial value over time, which can save you thousands of dollars in the long run. The insurance costs are usually also lower because the car is worth less than its nearly new counterpart.

If you’ve saved up and have enough money to purchase a car outright, you could save even more money. You avoid interest rates and can deduct the cost from your taxes. Doing so also allows you to skip the depreciation cost, as you won’t be taking a loan out to pay for the car.

Reliability & Maintenance:

No doubt a newer car will be more reliable as it has fewer miles. It is also likely to have a manufacturer warranty that could cover any breakdowns and faulty parts for the first few years of ownership. A used car may not offer any kind of warranty, but there are other benefits to consider when assessing reliability.

Used cars generally require less maintenance, as they have already been through the worst of their life cycle. Because of this, you may be able to avoid some major repairs that are common with newer vehicles.

Model Information:

With a used car, there are often consumer reports to help you decide on a reliable make and model. Even if there is no official warranty, it’s still possible to get an understanding of the vehicle’s track record for performance, repair costs, and longevity before buying.

On the contrary, a new model from the manufacturer may not have been subjected to the same scrutiny as a used car. Sometimes manufacturers release an engine design that ends up being unpopular among consumers, and a nearly new car can still end up having major problems. If this happens, could lead to higher repair costs and more time spent dealing with defects down the line.

Need For Compromise

It’s worth noting that you may have to compromise when it comes to buying a used car. You will likely be able to find one within your price range, but it may not necessarily fit all of your needs. If particular features are important to you, be prepared to spend more money to get them. This is especially true if the features require an upgrade to a more expensive model.

On the other hand, if you’re willing to make some sacrifices when it comes to features, then a used car may be a better option. You can likely find one that fits into your budget while still having all the necessary safety and reliability features.

You’ll Get Value for Money With Proper Research

Let’s face it, it’s easy to buy a bad pre-owned car if you don’t research it before purchasing. Therefore, proper research is essential to ensure that you get the best value for your money. Start by researching online, checking reviews and ratings, and reading up on reliable used car buying tips.


Once you know what kind of car you’re looking for, take a trip to a reputable used car dealership. Tell them what you’ve been looking for and ask them to inspect the vehicle thoroughly before signing a contract. You can also request a car history report, which will tell you about the vehicle’s past owners and how it’s been maintained over time. This should give you peace of mind that you’re making an informed decision.

Pay Cash and Drive Away With a Car You Fully Own

When you buy a used car, you won’t have to worry about a monthly payment. Instead, you can just pay the full amount upfront and drive away with your new wheels. This is especially convenient if you don’t want to be tied down to loan payments for years.

In addition, when you finance a car, you’re only borrowing money to pay for it. You don’t actually own the car until you’ve paid off the loan. With a used car purchase, you will immediately own the vehicle outright and won’t have to worry about repaying a lender.

Lakeland Hyundai Can Help You Buy a Used or New Car

Yes, used cars can be much more affordable than their nearly new counterparts if you do the legwork. But if you can afford it, a new car can be an excellent option as well. You’ll get the quality of a new vehicle, with access to additional features and warranties.

At Lakeland Hyundai, we take pride in offering our customers both used and new cars that they can rely on. Our sales staff is knowledgeable about all makes and models and will gladly assist. Contact us today to find the perfect car for your budget and lifestyle.

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