Suze Orman=Bad car advisor, excellent financial advisor

I was watching her show where she has a segmant where she says if you can afford something you want based on your financial standing and etc. Well a viewer wanted to purchase something that had the means to do so but when she told her that her car had a 137k miles on it she denied her and said her car had too many miles. Now most people on here know that a vehicle with 137k miles on the clock still has some useful life left to it and was paid off I’m sure but to her the viewer was denied. In her defense most cars today are not taken care of so I see her point but the make, model and year we’re not revealed. Just curious to see what the community thinks in these times of tight credit and everyone cutting back.

Ms. Orman with her own show is not in a situation where she would feel compelled to buy a car with 137,000 miles on it. That can make advice inappropriate for people with fewer assets.

I tend to agree if you can afford a newer car, yeah, get a newer car. But, there are some people who don’t have high paying jobs nor much money, and some models, such as Honda; Toyota; or Mazda; also some good US cars if well maintained, might give good service for a low purchase price. It would be important to have someone who knows cars well to examine it before buying.

If I were short on bucks, and needed another vehicle, I would not hesitate to buy a Sienna with 137,000 miles if a mechanic said it was in good shape, and/or the maintenance records showed high levels of maintenance.

My 2002 Sienna has 164,000 miles on it, if that is a clue, though I have owned it since new which makes a difference, so I know what has been done.

If I had no clue as to its past maintenance, I wouldn’t want to pay much for it.

Financial advice can seem strange but I like to get cars with 50,000 miles on them. When I buy at 135,000, I pay very little for them.

I don’t think it was bad advice. I have nothing against keeping a car with 137K miles or more miles on it, but I’d be reluctant to purchase one with that many miles.

I do agree, however, that people should live within their means.

In reality, it seems reasonable that a high mileage car be given little value in the terms of being an asset. There is always a significant difference between the asset value of these cars and their actual replacement cost to you as all of you know from dealing with insurance companies. In this cruel world where we “little guys”, the average consumer, hold the short end of the stick, I don’t think she was out of line. If Trump calls with his 137 K Bentley as an asset, he’ll get a resounding yes to buy that hotel.

For me, the answer depends on her financial situation and her living situation. If she is a single mother trying to cart around kids, and she can afford a newer vehicle, perhaps that was the right advice.

I can relate. Due to loss of job I had to ditch my 2005 back to the bank and went out and got a beater at a goodwill auction. It only cost me $450 and does have 129,000 miles on it, with some engine issues, I no longer have $400 a month payments and the car gets me to my new (but much less pay) job and around town. I really think given the economic conditions right now you have to do what you can afford.

Her financial advice is all financial and little practical. Based upon market values at purchase time and possible resale time. Yet the financial advisor fails to realize the buyer ; is not a car dealer , is not ‘flipping’ the purchase, and will keep the vehicle till it’s death. Therefore,
resale value is completely irrelevant.

In economic situations like this it’s the total cost of use that make it affordable or not, and 137k is not generally too many miles to begin ownership. ( based , of course , upon a pre-purchase mechanical inspection to prove out the theory.)

Just sold my 92 Explorer , 140k miles is low for a 92. buyer knows this and could pony up the purchase price and have NO monthly payments and insure with liability only for mere pennies compared to the full coverage required by lien holders. They’re happy - I’m happy - everyone wins. ( Humorous aside ; I am the original owner of this 92, It’s been my trade mark vehicle all these years. “Hey Ken, I saw some girl driving your truck.”…could start some juicy gossip ;))

Orman gives bad car advice and even worse financial advice.

Although I Have Purchased A Suze Orman Book, There Is Much Contoversy Concerning Whether Or Not She Is An “Excellent Finacial Advisor”. However She Is An Excellent Money Maker.

What if the car with 137.000 miles belonged to a relative or friend and was in super condition?

Let me say that I have purchased wonderful cars with just about that number of miles for a small fraction of the cost of buying new. Considering expenses caused by the cars’ miles and age compared to buying new, they still saved thousands of dollars in the long run.

As it is when giving financial advice, the variables are nearly infinite when it comes to advising a person on a car purchase. Some of the longest discussions in this forum result from somebody asking for car purchase advice.


The caller was not buying a car at 137k miles, she was purchasing something that seemed out of her means due to her car being that worn in. On the otherhand thanks for the replies and info. Steve

The whistle just blew. Everybody out of the pool.