When your customer asks the question, how do I decide what to buy? It’s go time, this is kind of what we car dealers love! Recently I had the opportunity to share my insight with a first time buyer. One of the perks of being in this business for over 16 years is experience, so I jumped at the opportunity. For first time buyers this is a huge event and can be stressful. The more equipped they are today, the better! 




At 27 they had driven their current car, new in 2015, to 4 years of instate college, used it for work across the entire eastern seaboard, to their new home over 1500 miles away, and now shared it with their spouse. It was a gift so they had not made payments nor established credit through an auto loan. A couple things were clear to me. Their car had been maintained relatively well to keep up with their pace and they’re decision to begin looking was most likely a good one 🙂 

First, I told them that their car appeared to have been a good one so… I had a few questions for them before offering my expert opinion. Establishing if they “need” a new car is a good place to start and gives me some idea of what their next car should be. 


How many miles does your current car have on it? 

Have you properly maintained it? 

Is it failing in some way? 


The answer to whether they needed to begin their search for an upgrade became clear. They had driven it 150 ‘000 miles. Their maintenance was “so-so” and several parts had started to fail, all expensive ones! 



The “need or want” process is an important part of being a successful and reputable car dealer, don’t sell them what they don’t need. Next, if it’s a need, provide the best options possible. There are some basic guidelines for establishing where to begin the search and why it could be time.  I knew from experience that their car was not known for performing well with high mileage so they were flirting with disaster. Poor maintenance means anything could fail from this point on. After further discussion it appeared they were not equipped to afford expensive repairs or the cost of a NEW car payment. 



How far is your daily commute?

Do you have cargo or just yourselves? 

Will you be towing? 

Are you a “point A to point B” or a “enjoy driving” person?

Fuel type? (Diesel, Gas, Electric)

Space costs extra, really need more? 

Plan to improve your maintenance practices or not? 

Cost of insurance?

What is your budget? Be honest


Where To Buy Options 

Within the first year of owning a new car, it could be worth 20% less than what you paid the dealership. Within 5-6 years it may be worth just 60% of its original value. So used cars have an obvious appeal to value / cost conscious customers. There are a couple of options. 


Buy from a dealership ~ Safer 

Buy from a private seller ~ Cheaper 


Why the dealer option is better for first time buyers. The main reason is that dealerships are responsible for disclosing problems the vehicle might have or repairing those issues before selling it. By providing a Carfax the buyer gets the facts. 

Buying from a private seller can be a little cheaper but no disclosure is required, buyer beware. Find the most reputable dealer who is willing to work with you on financing and you’re off to a good start. 




Cash down always helps negotiate a better interest rate which will provide a better monthly payment for a shorter time. Buyers may even negotiate on a longer term loan option with lower rates. By making regular monthly payments on time, credit is established for next time! If the dealer can’t provide a suitable load scenario, your neighborhood bank may be able to help. This is another way of building a credit history and a strong credit relationship. 


Don’t Be Scared, Be Educated 

When it comes to making a first time purchase of any kind it’s a little scary, it’s perfectly normal for a first time buyer to be apprehensive about purchasing their first car. The smart shopper does homework first and reaps the benefits. 

Have questions? I have answers, give TM Auto a call and let’s get you driving!

Call or text (757) 560-4252 and ask for Mike Love, let me show you how easy a car buying experience can be. 



Joe D’ Allegro “Thinking about buying a car? Here’s what auto experts say you need to know” PUBLISHED: APR 9, 2022 Web. Retrieved from: 

“First time car buyer’s guide: What to know before you buy” PUBLISHED: APR 27, 2022 Web. Retrieved from:

Buy a slightly used car for the win!

New Car Depreciation

A new car purchase is exciting, there is nothing quite like the moment you drive off in your new car! It’s the same for all of us, what is there not to love? Well, you probably won’t love the price tag or the drop in value within the first 1-5 years. In fact, that car will be worth 20-30% less within 12 months, that’s a $15’000 loss on the average luxury car! Could you have used that cash?

Look at it like this; your brand new $40,000 car will have a sticker price closer to $45,000. That’s one way to look at depreciation. Carfax data shows that cars can lose more than 10 percent of their value in depreciation during the first month after you drive off the lot. 


Make Depreciation Work for You

A used car that is two or three years old will already have taken a big depreciation hit, making it a better value. On average, a used car will already have lost 20 to 30 percent of its value in its first year and half its value by year three or four. If you plan to keep it for a long time, a used car may be an even better value. These days, it’s not uncommon for used cars to go well past 100,000 miles if they are properly maintained. Many can hit 200,000 miles without a major problem.


Fastest Depreciating Cars in 2018

If you bought one of the cars used, good job! Look at their depreciation rates after just one year of ownership to see what you may have or could have saved.


  • Kia Sedona 30%
  • Toyota Camry 30.7% (due to redesigned new models)
  • Infiniti Q-50 – 32.2%
  • Cadillac CTS 33.4%
  • Lincoln MKZ 33.7%
  • Mercedes Benz E-Class 34.5%
  • Jeep Compass 34.8%
  • Cadillac XTS 38.7%


Largest Drop

Every automobile, for specific reasons has its own rate of depreciation. It may be a particular model isn’t quite what the market expected or a high-ticket luxury model that’s at the height of popularity. In most cases, it’s simply the lure of “NEW”, and its depreciation value is your gain.  Below is a list of cars that are known for their high depreciation value. You can expect to get the best deals on these cars after 5 years off the lot. Like what you see, call me!


  • Chevrolet Impala 66.2 %
  • Jaguar XJL 66.4 %
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class 67.2%
  • BMW 5-Series 67.3%
  • BMW 6-Series 68.3%
  • Ford Fusion Energi Hybrid 69.4%
  • Mercedes-Benz S-Class 69.9%
  • BMW 7-Series 71.1%
  • Chevrolet Volt 71.2%
  • Nissan Leaf 71.7%


Percentages will vary from car to car depending on it’s condition and MSRP but on average you can expect a sharp drop within the first five years. Consider buying slightly used when choosing your next car, it’s money in the bank!

Have questions? I have answers, call or text (757) 560-4252 and ask for Mike Love. Let TM Auto Wholesalers of Chesapeake help you get the car you want for the price you need.

Follow TM Auto on Facebook to get instant notices on new inventory.



Agadoni,Laura. “Budgeting.nest: Buying a New Car Vs. a 2 or 3 Year Old Car” 4/1/2019. Web. Retreived from:

Stocksdale, Joel “MSN: Fastest depreciating cars in America.” 4/6/2018. Web.  Retrieved 4/1/2019 from:

Silvestro, Brian “Road and Track: These Are the Cars That Depreciate Most” Oct 12 2018, Web. Retrieved 4/1/2019 from