Planet Ford
of Humble TX

Car Buying Questions About
a Used 2008 Toyota Camry


A car buying question from Karen F. in Houston, TX...
Planet Ford has a used 2008 Toyota Camry and the price has been slashed...legit?


Hi Justin, I have a car buying question for you if you don't mind? I am working with Planet Ford of Humble, Tx... I was looking at a used 2008 Camry LE with 23K+ miles. Yesterday on their website, it was listed as $19,869 but today the price has been dropped to $15,399.

It's exactly what I'm looking for except the color. So I checked out the CarFax on it and it looks like the dealership has had it for a little over a month. The CarFax shows it was sold on July 15th but then offered for sale again on July 22nd. I know that could be that the buyer backed out, but I'm wondering if that is a red flag that something is wrong with the Camry?

It had one owner and was a commercial lease, which I'm assuming means a company bought it. The blue book retail value is $19,775.

They have not given me the interest rate yet and want me to go down there however, I have asked them to work up the numbers and interest rate and let me know before I will waste my time or theirs going in. I am still waiting to hear back from them on this.

What is your opinion on this? Is this something that happens a lot at a dealership, have they just dropped the price as it's been on the lot over a month or do you think it's just a sales ploy?

Thanks for your time,
Karen


Answer:

Hi Karen,

It sounds like it's a legitimate deal, but I would suggest printing out the page from their listing on their website, in case they want to try and change it on you after the fact.

The only thing I could see them trying to do (this is only if they are dishonest) is say that the price was an error and it's too low...Be sure to verify that is the correct selling price before heading to the dealership.

From my days in TX, I recall Planet Ford having a good reputation and I'm not suggesting they would, but it's always good to protect yourself with proof.

Back in Inventory
As for the vehicle being sold and then returned back into inventory, you could be right and maybe there was a deposit on the Camry and the financing fell through, or any number of things could have happened, but usually nothing to be alarmed about.

Vehicle History Reports
Referencing a CarFax is always a good idea, although I personally recommend AutoCheck® (just as good, but cheaper), but with any vehicle history report there can be a bit of a lag between the time when an incident occurs and when it is actually reported...I've heard up to six months, so if you are still a little weary, then I'd recommend having a professional mechanic inspect the car.

Inventory Turn Rate
With regards to dealers inventory turn rates, some dealerships have very strict rules as to the age of a car and will "slash" prices to sell them quick before they become too old.

There is a 90 day inventory turn rule in the car business that, successfully run, dealerships will typically adhere to...if it hasn't sold in 90 days it is wholesaled or sent to the auction.

So after 30 days they'll mark it down, after 60 days another reduction and at 90 days it's gone! Retailed or wholesaled it doesn't matter to the dealer, it just needs to be gone.


Good Deal, But Watch Out...

Based on the little I know of this used 2008 Toyota Camry, it sounds like you'd be getting a good deal, just be careful what they try to sell you when you are in the finance office.

Planet Ford, as with many car dealers, may have slashed the sales price of the car to get traffic to the dealership and then try to make up for the smaller profit on the front (sale of the car), by making big profits on the back (finance products).

Extended Warranty
That being said, I'm not suggesting that you do not buy what they offer, but do some homework with regards to extended auto warranties ahead of time if you think you'll be purchasing one. Try and get some quotes online to get a feel for pricing.

GAP Insurance
GAP insurance is also a very important product to have (I very highly recommend it if you plan to finance), but many dealers are now selling it for upwards of $800. If they are in about the $400 range you're in good shape, but $300 is better:)

Danger!
Do not sacrifice this coverage simply because they don't budge from let's say $495 to $300...It is far to important a coverage...You can read what happened to visitor Tomm G. here: VW Credit and No GAP Insurance. Ouch!!!

If this is the car you truly want, then I hope there is a "new" used 2008 Toyota Camry in your future and I'm sure you'll be in good hands with Planet Ford...

Hope this helps,
Justin


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