Should You Fix It Or Sell It: Knowing When To Fold Or Go All In

There’s never a convenient time for your truck to break down, whether it’s trying to get out of town, commute to work or just running to the store for a case of beer. These are all tough times to be without your truck and could result in having to pay a shop to perform repairs.

If you haven’t been in this position yet then you’re lucky! An expensive repair will vary from one person to the next, so for the sake of argument let’s pretend this repair bill you’re facing is expensive enough to make you consider selling your vehicle and moving on to something different.

Is the repair enough to question you to trade the vehicle in and get something new?

Now that you’ve decided where to take it and the diagnosis has been performed you get the news it will take over $8,000 to get your truck back up and running. After picking up your jaw from the floor since it’s not the fuel filter causing your problems which you had hoped, you begin to panic and wonder what to do. For some the decision is easy both financially and emotionally, they have no intention to sell their truck and have the savings to approve the repairs. Your decision may not be that simple. Is now the time to sell it or look into other options?

Now that it doesn’t run if you decide to sell it you’ll have to deal with buyers haggling the price, offering a trade, not showing up when they say they will, and taking a big loss on the value. The next step is to finance and purchase another vehicle.

Buying a used vehicle is a gamble and you could very well be walking into someone else’s problems and you’re back to square one. Financing a new or used truck also means the monthly payments will be extended further out and could put you quite a bit upside down into this vehicle. After thinking about it overnight this option isn’t so appealing so it’s time to consider plan B.

Borrowing money from a family member may be something to consider for some, but others that may not be an option. Financing repairs may not be something many have thought about or may not seem like a good idea, but financing $8,000 is a fraction of the amount you’ll have to finance for another truck.

Some shops offer to finance through Synchrony Financial and applying is fast and easy with instant approval. Depending on the amount financed they offer zero-percent interest for the first 12 months but increases to 29.99-percent after that. As long as it’s paid off within the 12-month window there are no interest fees.

Needing just a new water pump is a whole different story than a complete rebuild of a motor. Both of which will impact your decision to keep or sell your truck.

Once approved it’s just like a credit card and you are able to use it again for any future repairs. This is the same as a Car Care One program that some of the big tire companies offer and can be used anywhere that is enrolled in the program. Another route would be to contact your bank or credit union for an unsecured loan. This may seem strange, but that’s what banks are in business to do – loan money.

Budgeting for a major car repair isn’t something most people plan for, but it should be a consideration since a lot of people need that transportation for work. Sit down and think realistically about what dollar amount would make you hit the panic button and when that happens do you have a plan B. What repair cost is too much for you? Tell us in the comments below!

About the author

Gary Maschner

Gary has been working in a diesel shop since 2009 and he continually expands his knowledge of diesel repair and performance. His free time is filled with his boys’ ice hockey, camping and enjoying the Arizona back country in their RZR.
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