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carrr Question
Hi Im 17 years old and a senior in high school. im interested in becoming a mechanical engineer and found an internship that pays $1000 a month. Because i am college bound i want a car by the end of this school year (and i have a gf 5 miles away from me and a car would help greatly with the distance). My parents arent in a position to help me pay for a car. Im thinking if i save up 5000 i can buy a car on cars.com but im afraid that it would need to be repaired constantly and it would put a dent in my wallet. Should i buy a car worth $5000?

used_car_salesman_cartoon1248982130

Answer
WOW! Way to go!

Great internship!

You don’t need anywhere near $5000 to get a good reliable car that is cool enough to keep your girlfriend and won’t require you to wear a bag over your head. Seriously!

I’ll tell you something else, you are lucky your parents aren’t in a position to give you a car or help you pay for one because the car you buy with the money you earn will be the car you love the most. You will take better care of it and you will learn the meaning of a dollar.

All of the engineers I know work both hard and work smart. With that in mind let me demonstrate to you what is available out for much much less by conducting this little experiment.

This will be fun…

For the next 15 min. I’m going to scour craigslist for the hot bargains of the day in the Portland Oregon market. The cars I will be looking for will all be available to be bought for under $1500…

My concern is this: If your girlfriend has to wait until you save $5000 for you to show up at her house on Friday night, she will be long gone…. Or so angry from waiting that you won’t want to pick her up  lol

Ready…. Set….Go!

Image+1

OK…and time is up….I even took 2 calls during this time and here is what I found:

1) Mercury Sable with only 54000 mil. – $1650 (oregon city)

Date: 2012-10-12, 7:27PM PDT
Reply to: see below

I am selling a 1992 Mercury Sable lx with only 54,000 mils on it this is a nice car!
a must see has new tires, breaks, tags, asking 1650 obo
clean oregon title ! call 971-235-7628 thanks

2) 2000 Isuzu Rodeo, 5 spd, 4 cyl, Silver – $1995 (Bethany)

Date: 2012-10-12, 7:25PM PDT
< http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/replying_to_posts>]

Original owner, 75k miles, 5 spd, 4 cyl, AC, 2WD, ~ 20 mpg, no frills
Very Clean, no smoking or pets, consistent maintenance & records – runs great. May need exhaust work, and gas gauge is not consistent. (Use odometer)
Included with car is a Yakima rack, with attachments for ski/board and two bikes.
Motivated to sell we do not have a place to keep in our neighborhood. Selling as is.
Have title in hand, cash only.
Please call 5o3-926-75i3 or email. Pictures forthcoming

used

3) Mercury Sable 1996 – $1500 (Estacada)
Date: 2012-10-12, 6:54PM PDT
Reply to this post Reply to: vnmv9-3309202607@sale.craigslist.org <mailto:vnmv9-3309202607@sale.craigslist.org?subject=Mercury%20Sable%201996%20-%20%241500%20(Estacada)&body=%0A%0Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fportland.craigslist.org%2Fclc%2Fcto%2F3309202607.html%0A> [Errors when replying to ads? <http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/replying_to_posts>]
solid running mercury sable great gas mileage 111000 miles 1996 new windshield new alternator new battery rebuilt distributor good breaks, new starter, new wipers. It needs tires they are at least 70% worn drives front maybe 90% worn out. has short in door lock system just started after siting has no ac pump taken off could be put back on

4) 2000 Chrysler Sebring Sport Car, Loaded, Clean Inside and out , SEE! – $1800 (Keizer, Oregon)
Date: 2012-10-12, 3:45PM PDT
Reply to this post Reply to: vzvtv-3334948029@sale.craigslist.org <mailto:vzvtv-3334948029@sale.craigslist.org?subject=2000%20Chrysler%20Sebring%20Sport%20Car%2C%20Loaded%2C%20Clean%20Inside%20and%20out%20%2C%20SEE!%20-%20%241800%20(Keizer%2C%20Oregon)&body=%0A%0Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fportland.craigslist.org%2Fclc%2Fcto%2F3334948029.html%0A> [Errors when replying to ads? <http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/replying_to_posts>]

imagesB5LGM5SO

For Sale…
2000 Chrysler Sebring
Clean Title
Low Miles 148K
Clean Exterior and Interior
Power Everything
Automatic
Great Tires
Ready to go and regular Maintenance Done !
Fits 5 people, Good on Gas and Great on power.
Trunk has alot of Room, Very luxurious and sporty feeling when driving.
No Leaks No Smoke,
Good Tags until 2014
Need to pay unexpected bills and must sell..
Email Text or Call at…
(503) 954-77O5..
Thanks!

5) ’98 Ford Explorer XLT – $1700 (North East Portland)

Date: 2012-10-12, 2:57PM PDT
Reply to this post Reply to: 3w2dk-3334844789@sale.craigslist.org <mailto:3w2dk-3334844789@sale.craigslist.org?subject=’98%20Ford%20Explorer%20XLT%20-%20%241700%20(North%20East%20Portland)&body=%0A%0Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fportland.craigslist.org%2Fmlt%2Fcto%2F3334844789.html%0A> [Errors when replying to ads? <http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/replying_to_posts>]

’98 Ford Explorer for sale, only two owner car. Currently has 133,202 miles, never been in an accident, and in good interior shape. Priced low due to knowledge that it needs front end work, a new muffler, and minor mechanical glitches (driver side door lock is sticky). Contact via emal

20100512_used-cars-sign2_614mz

6) 1999 hyundai Accent GL with manual transmission – $1500 (Portland Oregon) Date: 2012-10-12, 2:12PM PDT
Reply to this post Reply to: ksqb6-3328161164@sale.craigslist.org <mailto:ksqb6-3328161164@sale.craigslist.org?subject=1999%20hyundai%20Accent%20GL%20%20with%20manual%20transmission%20-%20%241500%20(Portland%20Oregon)&body=%0A%0Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fportland.craigslist.org%2Fmlt%2Fcto%2F3328161164.html%0A> [Errors when replying to ads? <http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/replying_to_posts>]
Hi.. I am offering up a steal of a deal to a lucky person in need of a dependable, gas efficient commuter car! Unfortunately, I can not bring it with me to Chicago in which I will be moving too as soon as I sell my car! I would drive it there and it would make it but, then that would mean I would be driving in Chicago and that scares the living crap out of me!
Here are the awesome details!
1999 Hyundai Accent
5 speed MANUAL Transmission
4 door s
Never has been in a major accident
excellent vehicle for commuting
Asking 1500 firm
any questions and I am willing to answer them all text me at
posnerbluebook

The prices listed are the retail prices the seller is asking for and we all know how that works, don’t we? Each one of these vehicles represents a great value for the dollar and get you behind the wheel sooner rather than later. Each one is reasonably inexpensive to insure and get anywhere from okay to fantastic fuel economy. If you follow the links and look at these vehicles you’ll see what I’m talking about. Here is the key to finding great buys on used cars on craigslist.

1. Only search the for sale by owner ads
2. Never respond to ads without pictures
3. Look for evidence of pride of ownership
4. Look for evidence of regular oil changes and maintenance
5. When you look at the ad the car will generally be parked next to or in front of the seller’s house… What you are looking for is the car parked in front of the nicest possible house… If the cars parked on a gravel parking area next to a single wide trailer don’t buy it…. This is pretty self-explanatory
6. Private owners do not negotiate anywhere near as aggressively as dealers to and often times if they took care of their car they will have an unrealistic idea of its value. If you have two grand to spend in the car you are looking at is $2500 don’t be afraid to tell the owner him an e-mail that you only have $2000 to spend you are not trying to lowball him on his car but before you wasted any of his time or yours by driving over there to look at it you wanted to know if you loved it when you sought if 2000 bucks would work…. Just that simple.

used-car-lot

You’re thinking this is great Roger but the question I asked you don’t with a $5000 car not a $1500 car…. All I can tell you is if you can buy cars like these for 1500, you can only imagine what a $5000 car might look like. Here is something for you to consider: if you spend all of the money you save on car you don’t have anything in reserve in case something does go wrong. Cars don’t come with crystal balls for dealers or for consumers. Personally I would find a less expensive car and then have money in savings in case something went wrong. Always have the car checked out by a mechanic before you buy it… It’s worth the $50-$100 you’ll spend

I am with you on this until you are completely satisfied… Please feel free to ask as many follow-up questions as you want because when we are all through him I want you to be able to truthfully answer the survey questions you receive with perfect tens for me and maximum bonus points…. My personal e-mail is roadloans@gmail.com… For a faster response try me there first

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