To Repair or not to Repair, that is the question

I own a 2003 Subaru Outback, which I have loved; the problem is that it is getting old and we really need a bigger car - 6-passenger, at least. The car has a few dings on the back bumper and one of the back lights has lost its cover - something to do with a tree and an impatient husband caused that one.

My question is this: if we are going to trade this vehicle in, should we make the repairs? Isn’t it cheaper for a dealership to make these repairs? We probably will not get another Subaru since I am not thrilled with the Tribeca, so will a CarMax or something similar want the repairs made, or will they just do it themselves?

I would just do minor repairs that would annoy a prospective buyer. Major one you will not likely get your money back.

Take it to CarMax and see what they offer you. If you are happy with the offer, take it. If you aren’t going to fix any of the problems yourself, don’t bother.

Excellent, thank you for your responses. I know what Kelly Blue Book says it is worth - we’ll see what CarMax says :slight_smile:

I think I’d fix the tail light lens since that would be a violation but gotta expect some dings in 11 years.

Just curious, but how many miles on the car, what condition do you personally consider the car to be in, and what are your expectations about the monetary value?

Quite often, the opinion about condition and value can be very subjective.

I’d fix the tail light since it’s the first thing any buyer will notice and ding you for. Let your husband buy and install it since he’s the one what done broke it. :wink:

Other “dings” probably aren’t worth fixing.

Thanks for the tips on the taillight. I may have to order the part for him, but I know he can install it.

ok4450: my Subaru has just over 96,000 miles; we’re pretty hard on our cars, so I would say fair condition; blue book says about $5000. Does that sound reasonable? Or would that be with the repairs made, do you think?

Is that book price retail, trade in, or private party? Retail is what a dealer can hope to sell it for, not buy it for.

That’s apparently KBB trade-in value.