Are you in real need of a motor vehicle, but neither have the requirement nor the budget for the latest, extremely equipped, and very expensive models? WheelZine gives you a solution with a list of options where you can find a car for USD 500 and less!
|Did You Know?
The least expensive new car available in the USA in 2014, is the Nissan Versa sedan, and it still costs approximately USD 12,800.
Purchasing a 500-dollar-or-less automobile legally, and that too, one that actually runs, sounds like a Herculean feat. But believe it or not, it is quite possible.
Of course, do not expect to be handed over a motor vehicle that looks like it has come straight out of the showroom. No, you are more likely to get a battered up car, which has been in a few accidents in its lifetime, yet lives to tell the tale, and is (if you are lucky) in a good, working condition. Or you may be dealing with a car that doesn’t run, but can definitely be fixed. Another scenario might also occur that the car in question is a couple of decades old, but still has a few good years left.
Your bargaining skills, your flexibility on price, condition of the vehicle, your perseverance in keeping the search on until you find the perfect car, and also, to some extent, your timing, are all factors that play a part in getting your hands on such a ride. But before all that, the first step is knowing where to look.
Where Can I Find Cars At Such A Price?
1. From Family or Friends
Maybe your relatives are moving away, probably to a different country, and they want to get rid of anything they will not be taking with them, as soon as possible, and this may include their four-year-old Dodge. They may be willing to sell at a much lower price than what you can expect at any used car lot, and the family factor could be an added advantage for you when it comes to price negotiation. A friend may be in dire need of cash, and may be willing to sell you his car in exchange for it. Family and friends tend to be more empathetic towards your budget constraints than actual automobile dealers, and they are definitely more reliable to buy from, than a complete stranger.
2. From Government or Bank Auctions
What are Government Auctions? Automobiles that are seized by cops, or which are impounded, become government property, and when there is a surplus of such vehicles, they, along with other such excess government property, are disposed of via auctions at very cheap prices. These auctions are held at regular intervals in various neighborhoods, and information about them can be obtained from certain government publications, or directly from the government organizations.
The official website that provides this information is GSA Auto Auctions.
Apart from by the government, cars also often get repossessed by banks, and after a while, banks decide to get rid of them too, via auctions. Being at the right auction at the right time could be the key to finding a suitable car, as per your budget and requirement.
Note:- A number of scam ‘Government Auction’ websites have sprung up in the last few years where one has to make an account for a price to obtain information about Government Auctions (which can actually be obtained directly by the interested person from government publications), or which claim to represent a Government Auction but actually want to draw customers to a different auction altogether. Beware of these rackets, and verify the authenticity of the auction you are purchasing your car from, before you part with any money.
3.From Used Car Lots and/or Junkyards
With truly no dearth of these all over the country, a used car lot or a junkyard is a good place to not just find a car for a good price, but also spare parts for motor vehicles. You have a wider variety to choose from, with automobiles of different types falling into various price brackets. Here is where you may find a car that is really old, but still runs fine, and it can fulfill your basic needs. In a junkyard, you may also find a car at a throwaway price that may not be running right now, but can be fixed. However, on the other hand, used car dealers are experienced businessmen who could be pushing a piece of junk for much more than it is worth. Also, the car you get may be running now, but you should expect it to need repairs in the near future.
4. Internet Auctions, Markets, or Classifieds
Buying and selling online is a flourishing industry by itself. The automobile sector of the same is also a very lucrative one, and a lot of motor vehicles, both new as well as pre-owned are being sold daily. This being said, you are bound to find a killer deal on a car that you like on the internet. Once you get familiar with the know-how of online shopping, it won’t take you too long to figure out the tips and tricks of getting a real bargain. For example, responding to the less-viewed, misspelled listings that are also just about to expire.
Note:- A word of caution; you must verify the authenticity of the dealer and should always check the papers of the vehicle itself before making any purchase. Also, make payments using reliable channels, such as PayPal, as opposed to money orders or revealing your credit card information to the seller.
Some noteworthy online marketplaces where you can find cars under USD 500, are:-
5. Newspaper Classified Ads
While perusing newspaper classifieds, do not stop with just the section covering automobiles. You could go through the ‘Real Estate’ ads; when large estates change hands, it is quite possible that to clear assets, new owners or their lawyers sell off old motor vehicles at whatever price they can get for them. Also, if you do find something that catches your eye in the ‘Automobiles’ section, summon all your bargaining skills, and you will surely be able to land a deal.
So these were some of the domains to explore in your search for cars under 500 dollars. The only trick to getting your hands on a genuine bargain is the right combination of patience and skills of persuasion (with the dealer, about the price), so do not despair if you cannot find something you like, and which meets all your requirements, at the first go.