Dave at Money in the 20s wrote about getting a deal on used car by buying them from your employer the other day. This post reminded me of my own personal deal getting trick for buying used cars. Old rental cars. I know what you’re thinking. Old rental cars?! That’s like marrying a… don’t say it!
Anyways, that mentality is part of why they are such a good deal. Think of it more like buying a bank owned property. You are getting them disposal prices. Banks aren’t in the real estate business, and rental car places aren’t car dealerships. They are both just looking to dispose of the property.
We have bought three old rental cars and all three have been great cars. The details are escaping me now of what we paid for those cars, but let’s look and see what they have available right now. Thrifty has a 2008 PT Cruiser with 32,000 miles for just under $10,000. Looking around I found another 2008 PT Cruiser for the same price, but it had 20,000 more miles on it.
Poking around on Hertz’s site it seems they sell their cars for about $1,500 less than Kelly Blue Book. That’s a pretty good deal.
I have personally bought from Enterprise and Hertz. Both places offered no haggle prices and financing. Enterprise took trades, Hertz did not. But Hertz will let you take a 3 day test drive. Plus, these cars have been professionally maintained and usually come with full maintenance records, which certainly can’t be said for a private party sale. Or even from a dealership really.
A downside is the resale value. You get to buy it at a reduced price because of the stigma of being a rental car, but so does the next person. To me this isn’t an issue since we drive all our cars into the ground. I’m not looking to get anything out of it at the end. But if you know you aren’t going to be keeping the car for some reason, it’s a consideration
Would you consider buying a used rental car? Have you ever done it? I’d love to hear your experiences.