New or Used: Debtors Prison Edition

new or used debtors prison edition

Hi there, I would like some advice on how to sell my new car. I bought a 2011 Subaru Outback Sport a little over one year ago and quickly realized that I made a huge mistake.

It’s not anything to do with the car, in fact, I love the car. It has everything to do with the fact I “traded” an almost new Mazda3 for it and now I am “upside down” and I have found myself in a pickle.

I have come to the realization that I cannot afford the car any longer with gas prices going up and up, the payment itself, and the economy.

So, do you have any advice on how to sell it QUICKLY? I owe more than the car is worth and that is where my confusion comes in to play. How do you sell a car that you owe more than it’s worth?

Steve Says:

That’s easy!

You don’t!

Keep what you have. Have gas prices gone up? Then drive less. Are you upside down? Then honor your commitments and eventually you will find yourself right side up. Want me to pull a Judge Judy or Dr. Phil on you? No thanks. I pass.

The truth is that virtually all of us make a dumb financial decision at one time or another. We buy a car that’s too expensive… or a house… or find ourselves doing business with a douchebag. Life happens.

In your situation I would propose less leisure time and finding more work. Yeah, I know the economy isn’t a well oiled machine at the moment. But it hasn’t been that way since 1999.

Your Subaru should serve you well for a long, long time should you chose to become a long-term keeper instead of a debt ridden trader. I would pursue a long-term investment in a debt free existence.

Good luck!

Sajeev Says:

You wanna know how you sell a car that you owe more than it’s worth, QUICKLY? Do you really wanna know?

By grinning, bending over and taking it…well, you see where this is going.

We haven’t walked a mile in your shoes, so we sure as hell better not be judgmental. So my advice? Sell your new ride and drive an old hooptie. Time to punish yourself: trade it in for a used, $10,000 family sedan from a dealership with a reputation for taking in clean used cars. With any luck, that purchase will negate the thousands in negative equity so you can make a fresh start. An older Camry/Corolla is ideal, both on their quality reputation, fuel economy and fantastic resale value.

Learn to love your Cam-rolla, and fix it on the cheap too. And when you are in the black, no longer in your current circle of debt, don’t make this mistake again. Learn from your mistakes.

We all gotta do it, and we’ve all been there.

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2 of 31 comments
  • Rpn453 Rpn453 on Dec 20, 2012

    I'd post it privately for the amount you owe, firm. If someone wants it for that, sell it. If not, keep making the payments and cut back on other expenses and/or get another part-time job. Continually update the price to reflect the declining debt amount until it's either sold or you get your head above water.

  • Wstarvingteacher Wstarvingteacher on Dec 21, 2012

    Seems that most of the alternatives to keeping it and getting another job to help pay for it have some sort of bad impact on your credit or try your patience miserably. I never have the patience to do a good job selling, but: I think that selling to an individual is the second best answer. The best one is to ride it out and then to drive it till the wheels fall off. I say that but seem to be unable to do it very well. I traded a 2007 Saturn Vue with the Honda v6 for a six speed manual demo Nissan cube in 2010. Payments got lower and fuel economy increased. it isn't as fancy but it's a great car. I probably wouldn't have done that but I had just had enough of saturn vues when my first one threw a timing chain with no warning and I had just found the 2007 had a $1200 timing chain coming up (according to Honda). We should have still been driving the excellent SL's that Saturn first camme out with. I guess being P_ss_d off can be a stimulus to doing things. I now have lower payments by a bunch and happy with the new car. Now at 68kmiles and no problems whatsoever. Look around. If you cannot stay with the subie there is probably a salesman somewhere willing to sell you something plain for less.

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