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Florida Auto Insurance

New or Used? Buying and Insuring a Car in Florida

Whether you are in Naples, Fort Myers, Lehigh Acres, Cape Coral, or somewhere else in Southwest Florida, buying a car is an exciting time especially if it’s your first time. But like any large purchase, there are things you need to keep in mind before you buy so it’s important to do your homework when shopping around.

You want to get a good deal, but you also want to make sure the make and model you choose will have all the features you are looking for. While Goodlad & Swank can’t help you become a master negotiator when purchasing your car, there are certainly ways we can make sure you are considering all the variables when looking for the right ride.

So while you’re trying to decide whether to go the new or used car route, read on to learn some things you may not have considered about each. You may just come to a different decision than you were originally thinking.

Pros and Cons of New Cars

There’s truly nothing like that new car smell. While it may sound cliché, it’s one of the aspects of getting into a new car that people love so much. Air fresheners have tried to replicate that signature scent, but it’s not quite the same. While the smell of a new car is great, there are other benefits to buying a new car, as well as some drawbacks.

  • PRO — maintenance: Sometimes, manufacturers will offer complimentary scheduled maintenance for a period of time after purchasing a car which can save you some money. Additionally, since all the parts are brand new, you likely won’t need to purchase a new battery, tires, or other parts for several years after your purchase.
  • PRO — peace of mind: New cars typically come with warranties that can last up to a decade, which can give you some reassurance. New cars are also covered by “lemon laws” that could get you a refund or a replacement of your car if there are serious defects on the vehicle.
  • CON — cost: No matter how you slice it, when comparing a new versus used car, you’ll almost always pay more for the new car depending on the make and model.
  • CON — uncertainty: When buying a car in its first model year (buying a 2021 Toyota Camry in 2021) is that there won’t be much info available — this includes user reviews and kinks that need to be ironed out. These issues are typically minor and will be covered by the warrantee, but you’ll still be in the shop more often than you may have anticipated for a new car.

Pros and Cons of Used Cars

Don’t care for the new car scent? Maybejust looking to save some money? A used car may be the better choice for you. There are some perks to buying a car used, but you’ll want to be more cautious when shopping used cars. It’s difficult to know exactly how the previous owner(s) treated their car, but with a little extra legwork, you can limit the risk of experiencing some expensive issues in the future.

  • PRO — cost: They say a car loses 50% of its value as soon as it leaves the lot, and it’s not entirely untrue. New cars depreciate exponentially over the first few years. By being the second owner, you’re letting someone else take that loss in value, while also getting the car for less.
  • PRO/CON — reliability: With many automakers offering “certified pre-owned” programs, buying a used car isn’t as risky as it once was. But something to note is that used cars typically don’t have the same warrantee coverage as they would have new, even if the original warrantee is transferrable to a second owner.
  • CON — maintenance: In theory, a used car shouldn’t need more maintenance than a new car, there will inevitably be additional parts and maintenance you’ll need to purchase over time. Used cars will oftentimes need to have tires, headlights, etc., replaced earlier or more frequently as they age. Your regular maintenance will also not be covered like it may have been with a new car.
  • PRO/CON — history: To ensure a used car hasn’t been in a serious accident, it’s important to do your homework and check the car’s title history. If you are purchasing from a dealership, you can ask them to provide this information, usually from Carfax.

Whether you decide to go for a new car or a used one, the most important thing is to make sure it’s a good fit for your individual needs. As your Southwest Florida Auto Insurance company, we want you to keep in mind that certain makes and models can have higher insurance rates than others. Feel free to check in with us before you purchase your next vehicle, and we’ll be happy to help you. Call 239-674-7630 or email us at

Have fun shopping — and we’ll see you on the road!

Butch Swank
Agent, Goodlad and Swank Insurance

Goodlad & Swank

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