Is Buying a 10-Year-Old Car Worth it? The Truth…

Brand-new cars are expensive to own for many people that’s why the tendency of buying old cars is increasing. 

The amount of used cars sold in the United States per year is about 2 to 3 times compared to the newer ones.

But is buying a 10-year-old car worth it considering all the crucial things of a used car? Today we’ll find the answer to this question and learn a smart way to buy one for ourselves.

Is Buying a 10-Year-Old Car Worth it?

Buying a 10-year-old car and keeping it for another 5 to 10 years is worth it if you find a reliable one with no major mechanical or safety-related issues.

Brand-new cars are expensive nowadays. Buying older vehicles having good health can be a cost-effective decision. 

Older cars don’t lose their value due to depreciation like the newer ones. They are also cheaper to insure in general conditions. 

Though, older cars need extra care and maintenance. They may be likely in need of fixing or repairing every 18 to 20 months

Proper inspection is mandatory while buying a 10-year-old car, as the condition solely depends on the usage and care of the owner. Cars with major problems will end up the savings that you make avoiding a brand new one.

Also read: 10 Cars Under $20K that Look Like They’re for $50K+

Is a 10-Year-Old Car too Old? 

It’ll depend on how the car has been treated throughout the last 10 years. If the owner follows all the necessary pieces of advice responsible for keeping the car in top-notch health, then it’ll be in good condition after 10 years also.

Without proper maintenance and care, the overall condition of a car seems to not be in good health after 10 years.

Is a 10-Year-Old Car’s Insurance Cheaper than in Newer Cars?

The cost of insurance for a 10-year-old car is generally cheaper compared to a new one, but the statement need not be applicable for all older cars as there are other important factors.

The insurance cost of a car depends on many factors including driving record, insurance provider, age, gender, level of coverage, limits, availability of vehicle parts, etc.

Older cars cost less to insure in terms of collision and comprehensive insurance. However, these insurances are recommended if the vehicle you own is worth more than $4000.

If you have full coverage on your 10-year-old car, you’ll get the actual cash value applicable for your vehicle. But it’s not a wise use of money to have full coverage as the amount you’ll get in return isn’t much more.

You may need to be ready to pay a large amount for insurance purposes having a classic or ancient old car as the parts of your vehicle take a long time, money, and effort to get managed and fixed.

Also read: Is it Safe to Drive a 20-Year-Old Car? The Facts

Does a 10-Year-Old Car Depreciate Slower than Newer Cars?

A 10-year-old car will depreciate slower than newer cars, as brand-new cars lose most of their value in the early stage of being sold.

A brand-new car generally loses 9 to 11 percent of its value just after the first touch of wheels on the ground. The amount rises to 20 percent after the first year, and it can be about 60 percent after five years.

Trending Video: How to Easily Bring Back to Life any Old Car Battery and Save Tons of Money (click to watch)

However, the exact amount of depreciation by time depends on the exact model you own. There are both types of cars available in the market, having a large or small amount of depreciation as time goes on.

As a 10-year-old car loses most of its actual value, the applicable amount of depreciation for it will be much lower compared to a brand-new car (2-5% per year).

It’s a good decision to do some research on which model you are going to buy. Depreciation history and informative data can help you to make your decision.

What Mileage Should You Look for in a 10-Year-Old Car?

A 10-year-old car should have a mileage of 120,000 as average cars cover a distance of about 12,000 miles in a year. The mileage of a car depends on its previous history like the number of owners it has passed through, the purpose of use, etc.

Some owners don’t use their vehicles too much. In this case, cars may be deprived of proper maintenance also.

Rental cars generally cover more distance compared with regular ones but also with proper maintenance. 

Focusing on the overall conditions and the number of possible remaining mileage can help you to choose your suitable one.

Also read: 15 Cars that NEVER Rust (100% Galvanised)

Are 10-Year-Old Cars Less Reliable?

Cars having an age of around 10 years can be said to be reliable as long as proper care and maintenance were ensured throughout the driving period. 

It’s obvious that a 10-year-old car needs more fixing and repairing because of daily wear and tear. Regular maintenance is a key part to rely on for the long term. 

Buying a 10-year-old car can save you a large amount, but you should also consider the possible fixing and repairing cases.

However, if reliability is the main goal, it can be a wise decision to buy a 5-year-old car as it maximizes the reliability considering the price you’ll pay.

Is a 10-Year-Old Car’s Maintenance Cheap?

The maintenance cost of a 10-year-old car will be higher compared to newer ones as the car faces more repairing and fixing issues over time. A 5-year-old car needs somewhere between $300 to $400 annually, while it can be around $600 for a 10-year-old car.

Though the exact price may vary considering the place, model, and the type of maintenance you need.

Some old cars can be subjected to major mechanical problems, with a probability of expensive breakdowns. A solid inspection before buying is mandatory if you don’t want to spend a large amount of money on maintenance purposes after buying one.

Is a 10-Year-Old Car Safe Enough?

A well-maintained 10-year-old car is safe enough to drive as proper maintenance is the key to keep your vehicle in a smooth condition.

Newer cars come with fully functional pieces of equipment ensuring both reliability and safety. They don’t require maintenance too often as well as fixing issues. 

The same thing can’t be said confidently for a 10-year-old car. It’s understandable that old cars should be maintained carefully, as the pieces of equipment have gone through a large operational period.

If you get to manage yourself by buying a well-maintained 10-year-old car and making the maintenance process go on, it’s definitely safe enough to run for a longer period.

Also read: Do Newer Cars Last Longer than Older Ones? The Facts

Is Owning a 10-Year-Old Car Less Stressful?

Owning a 10-year-old car is less stressful considering the amount of depreciation and budget. But the same thing doesn’t go well if you think about regular maintenance and repair costs.

An older car helps you to save a large amount of money considering a newer one. There is also a winning situation when the question of losing value due to depreciation comes.

However, a 10-year-old car needs the replacement of brakes, tires, and batteries at regular intervals. It will take a larger amount for repairing purposes also.

It’s suggested to be prepared for spending on these purposes from the beginning.

What is the Best Car Age to Buy?

It mainly depends on which important thing you are focusing on. The determining factors can be reliability, look, depreciation, budget, or overall situation. If you want to own a used car that looks fresh and shiny, you can choose a 3-year-old car. If reliability is the main goal, a 5-year-old car may be a good choice for you.

If you’re buying a 3-year-old vehicle, you should be prepared to spend a bit higher.

If reliability is the main goal, a 5-year-old car may be a good choice for you. In this case, you can save a standard amount of money compared with a 3-year-old car.

Considering depreciation and budget, a 10-year-old car is a good-to-go choice. Proper inspection and checking can ensure both the reliability and safety of a 10-year-old car.

What are the Best 10-Year-Old Cars to Buy?

Some of the best 10-year-old cars on different categories can be listed as below:

  1. Hatchback
  • Ford Focus
  • Toyota Prius
  • Vauxhall Astra
  1. Sedan
  • Buick Lucerne
  • Toyota Camry
  • Toyota Avalon
  1. Pickup Truck
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Honda Ridgeline
  • Nissan Frontier
  1. SUV
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Honda CR-V
  • Lexus RX

How to Buy a 10-Year-Old Car in a Smart Way?

Following some useful steps given below can help you to buy a 10-year-old car smartly:

1. Determine how much you can spend on the car

2. Do the research and make a list of some of the best 10-year-old cars

3. Check the price and compare them with your budget 

4. It’s better if you can manage to find used cars in your area

5. Check the previous history like insurance, mileage, license, driving record, etc carefully 

6. Contact the seller

7. Drive the car on your own as you have to deal with the rest of the days

8. Have a mechanic for all kinds of inspection 

9. Negotiate properly to buy within your budget10. Prepare all the paper related work done