Buying a car on Maui can be a bit daunting, especially coming from the mainland. Because of the smaller market, car prices jump up and down quickly. On the mainland, used car prices tend to be more stable. The following are some general considerations if you are thinking of purchasing a used vehicle here on Maui.
Talk to Others
Talk to others about the market value. Maui is a small pool of people. Hopefully, you have some other residents you can speak to about car prices. You wouldn’t need to get together, you can just send a text or a Facebook message with a link to info about the vehicle you are considering. Extra points if you are messaging a mechanic or even someone who sells used cars.
Try to get references on both the owner of the car and the car itself. Because Maui is such a tight community, you may know someone who knows the car owner. You can get a quick and casual character reference by asking around. While rare, if someone is known to have been dishonest around the island it’s likely they will not be straightforward about their vehicle.
Check the Local Market Value Online
Checking websites like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist is a great way to get a quick idea of a vehicle’s local market value. Cars on Maui tend to have more ware per mile when compared to cars that were used on mainland freeways. I currently drive a car with over 200k miles. The last 20k miles have been here on Maui. Driving around upcountry Maui has vastly accelerated my vehicle’s deterioration.
Car History Websites
Check the Vin with vechiclehistory.com and Carfax to check your car history.
Get the Vehicle Inspected by a Professional
Have the car inspected by a local mechanic. Many potential issues will be instantly recognizable to a mechanic. Additionally, the mechanic will likely have a grasp on the local market value of a vehicle. They will know if the deal if fair. Come talk to us at Intense Motorsports Maui if you intend to have a used car modified. We will give you a quote and let you know if the car might be a lemon.
Test-drive the Car
I know it may sound obvious but many car owners do not test-drive their car and pay for it later.
Mahalo for Reading
Hope you enjoyed this post. More to come. Aloha.