Buy a Convertible in the Fall or Spring?


Dear Driving for Dollars,

Continue Reading Below

I want to buy a used convertible and will be ready soon, but if I buy the car in the fall, I won't be driving it much due to the weather. Should I wait until spring to buy it instead? -Jason

Dear Jason,

There are pros and cons for either choice. If you opt to buy the convertible this fall, you will probably find a better deal because interest in convertibles wanes during the winter. Private sellers and dealers will have a harder time making a sale. Similarly, interest in convertibles rises in the spring and summer months, which generally means sellers will be less willing to give you a deal.

As you point out, if you buy now, the convertible will likely be sitting in your garage for several months with little use. This is a little easier to swallow if you are buying the car outright versus making a monthly payment on a car loan.

More On This...

One way to reduce the costs would be to insure the convertible as a nondriver until spring. It would cover you from theft or other loss such as a fire -- but not from a collision. Also keep in mind the fall is when new models arrive. Depending on when you buy, your used convertible could essentially experience one year's worth of depreciation in a very short time.

If you are getting a car loan, this could put you upside down in the loan where you owe more than the car is worth. That could be devastating financially if the car is stolen or totaled in a crash.

Get more news, money-saving tips and expert advice by signing up for a free Bankrate newsletter.

Ask the adviser

If you have a car question, email it to us at Driving for Dollars. Read more Driving for Dollars columns and Bankrate auto stories. Follow her on Facebook here or on Twitter @SheDrives.

Bankrate's content, including the guidance of its advice-and-expert columns and this website, is intended only to assist you with financial decisions. The content is broad in scope and does not consider your personal financial situation. Bankrate recommends that you seek the advice of advisers who are fully aware of your individual circumstances before making any final decisions or implementing any financial strategy. Please remember that your use of this website is governed by Bankrate's Terms of Use.