71a839ea0870136c22a452df12aec4af0acd7af1cf599281a0 March 2013 ~ Spiller Kustoms
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Spiller Kustoms is a family blog from NOLA. Stop by and see what Gumbo we are dishing.

Sometimes my kids are making a big mess, but they are just having loads of fun. You never know what adventures we are on.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

How to tell if your car needs an alignment.

One of the ways to tell if your car needs an alignment is when your tire treads are wearing on the side.  Another is if you notice that the steering wheel is slightly pulling, and you have to keep turning right or left to keep the car straight.  So why are alignments important for the car?  Well the answer is that alignments are to lengthen the life of your tires.  So let us do the math.  If you spend five hundred dollars or more on tires and do not get an alignment, the front tires will wear down, which will cost you more in the long run on replacing your tires.  Cost of tires can get pricey, and so getting an alignment done is always a good investment.

Did you know that some companies offer lifetime alignments as low as one hundred and fifty dollars, whereas the one-time-alignment service is around seventy dollars or more?  This is a cost effective service, if you live in cities where there are a lot of potholes, and plan on keeping your car for several years.  I have owned many cars, and I have come to the conclusion that the lifetime-alignments saves me money since I would need one every year.

Last, You should also get an alignment if you have been in a car accident.  A year ago, my mother was involved in a slight fender bender, at the front fender.  I spoke with her about doing the alignment after I noticed that the steering wheel tilted more to the right.  It has been a year since, and she just noticed that the tires are wearing.  My mom is rather reactive when it comes to maintenance on cars, which will cost her repairs on a rather simple preventative issue.

Friday, March 1, 2013

How to Sell A Car and What To Expect

It's that time of the year again, Tax Season.  One of the biggest things that people do during this time of the year is buying and selling goods, such as cars.  So what do you do, when you consider selling your car?  The whole process can be a daunting one, but if you do your homework, it should a breeze.

Here are some things to consider:  Are you going to do a trade-in or are you going to sell it owner-to-owner?  Have you done a checklist of all the things that are wrong with the car, in order to disclose it to potential buyers?  What is the Blue Book Value of the car for trade-in and direct sales?

Trade-in vs. direct sales (owner-to-owner)
It is pretty important to maximize the most out of your used car.  If you are looking to purchase a brand new car after selling, trade-ins may or may not be the best option. Generally, a trade-in value would be less than what you would get if you were to list the car yourself.  On the other hand, you do not have to list your car and it would be an easy transaction to sell your car back to a dealer.  If you choose to do a trade-in make sure that you know what the value of the trade-in before you go to the dealership.

Checklist for all issues
You should make a checklist of all issues with the car.  This would be useful when you are disclosing information on the maintenance, accidents, previous owner history.  Also, this would allow you to make adjustments to the Blue Book value.

Blue Book Value
Kelly's Blue Book will give you an estimate of the value of your trade-in and also your direct sale value.  However, you should also be aware that these figures are just rough estimates.  Based on my experience of selling car, the final price is usually less than KBB value.

Okay so let's put all of this together.  You should know your potential buyer.  I have had an instance when I brought my car to a dealer and gotten a very low trade-in value.  I left rather insulted with their offer, because  the issues had been minor such as dents in the bumper, and the car being dirty. In the end, I decided to paint the bumper and detail the car myself.  It was a smart move, because I sold the car for two thousand more than the trade in value, and I only had to spend about two hundred dollars on materials.
Last, a buyer will always talk you down from what you are asking.  You have to know when to be firm about your price and consider it when you list your car.

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