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Should I Buy a Car From Carvana?

Do you want to test your negotiation skills? Would you prefer to have a sales rep guide you through the process? In either case, Carvana might not be the best solution. It’s the “digital” aspect that separates Carvana from traditional car lots. (And even similar services like CarMax.) As its moniker implies, Carvana strives for a blissful car buying and trade-in experience.

He’s written for The Points Guy,, Thrive Global, Day to Day Finance, Money Mini Blog, and more. Per Carvana’s website, roughly 80% of customers choose Carvana’s financing program. We can outline the nuances of Carvana all day — but you’re likely here to determine if Carvana is right for you. This includes a road test and car history assessment via CARFAX. But not all of them, which we’ll explore more below.

You’re responsible for the listed price, taxes, title transfer, vehicle registration, and any extras. You can leverage Carvana’s site to compare models and car prices. For instance, it’s much easier to assess the size of a dent in person than online. Test drives are an essential step when buying any car, especially used vehicles.

It can actually be helpful to have an assigned point of contact assist you through the car buying process. Carter Kilmann is a personal finance writer and editor for hire, covering topics like credit cards, mortgages, budgeting, banking, and investing. Carvana’s bread and butter is the convenience of its shopping experience. That’s an understandably stressful process, considering vehicle purchases are not cheap.

Then you fill out “paperwork,” such as financing terms and trade-in info. Apply in Minutes It can generally be said that if we want something to last a long time, we need to take care of it regularly. You can potentially save thousands a year with nine practical ways to cut car expenses. To test drive a Carvana vehicle, you have to proceed with the purchase process. The warranty is valid for 100 days or 4,189 miles, whichever happens first.

Work remotely. Credit improvements can lead to lower interest rates and,… With the process in mind, let’s walk through the pros and cons of using Carvana to buy a car. But that’s not the only bonus.

Although Carvana is an unconventional dealership, it’s still a dealership. In other words, you’ll have a week to determine if it’s a good fit. Test driving also sheds light on potential mechanical issues and aesthetic damage. But there’s also the stressful process of haggling with the sales staff.

Featured photo credit: Carvana Those vending machines don’t fill themselves. You can swap it out up to three times. Carvana also makes money by issuing auto loans and selling GAP waivers and vehicle service contracts.

Maybe your credit score has improved since origination. Carvana has a no-haggle policy. If you plan to finance your car purchase, consider comparing Carvana’s in-house car loan offer with other lenders — such as banks and credit unions.

Lastly, Carvana’s inventory has swelled over the last five years. In 2014, Carvana sold 2,105 vehicles to retail customers and another 137 wholesale at auction. No debates with sales staff.

So, it’s worth being mindful of dealership financing versus more traditional financing options. At the end of the day, using Carvana boils down to one question: How much in-person contact do you want or need? This allows you to test drive various cars while remaining price-conscious. You browse models to find the right fit based on your preferences.

Haggling can be an awkward process — a pain point that Carvana targets with its ads. In that sense, shopping with Carvana can actually wind up being more expensive than the conventional approach. Here’s how to budget beforehand. This is Carvana’s primary source of revenue.

Although its Car Vending Machines are flashy and unique, they aren’t as beneficial as a car lot. Take classes. Once you receive your vehicle, Carvana offers a seven-day money back guarantee.

Should I Buy a Car From Carvana?


p>Author Image From Carvana’s homepage, you can navigate to the site’s vehicle inventory and browse based on your preferences. For instance, let’s assume you find a car and choose a touchless delivery. One of the obvious downsides to buying a car online is that you can’t see the car in person. This doubles as a time-saver and a contactless method, which is a plus during the pandemic. You can do almost anything online these days.

I had a lot of issues come up throughout the process. Carvana’s inventory comes from retail trade-ins and auction purchases, which it then sells to other buyers at a profit. The display includes alerts about external and internal issues (e.g., dents, scratches). If you measure success by vehicle sales, Carvana has come a long way over the last decade.

While that’s better than nothing, it’s still a commitment considering you have to set up the delivery and tee up documentation first. When explaining her Carvana experience, she expressed, “My personal frustration with Carvana was that I wasn&#8217;t assigned a go-to person. Contrary to popular belief, not all sales reps try to nickel and dime you.

No waiting on a manager’s approval. Each Carvana vehicle must pass a 150-point inspection to be deemed available for sale. Do you prefer a contactless experience? Are you okay with seeing a car after starting the purchase process?

Then Carvana could be a good option. Carvana’s primary advantage over standard dealerships is convenience. So, I found myself having to explain to them over and over again what the issue was.” You can do everything through Carvana’s website: That’s especially true for models that have dents and dings. In a way, this alleviates some of the typical frictions of car buying.

As a result, the Carvana experience has several unique advantages. To help determine if you should buy a car from Carvana, we’ve outlined everything you need to know. Unlike your local dealerships, Carvana doesn’t allow you to use the eye test to evaluate its inventory. Carvana will even deliver the car to your driveway upon purchase.

RateGenius Editorial Director, Cristy Lynch, recently purchased a vehicle through Carvana and had difficulties in this area. It’s an obvious tradeoff for a mainly digital company, but a significant one. Buying a car from a dealership can be a hassle. Carvana customers have a seven-day trial period before they have to decide whether to keep their new car or return it.

But that comes with its own set of hurdles. In addition to the above pros and cons, here are two approaches to try before you buy. Of course, there’s the inconvenience of driving from lot to lot to find the right car. One reviewer mentions a frustrating multi-day ordeal. However, there’s a major difference: The entire process is online.

There’s nothing wrong with taking a hybrid approach to finding your next car. However, they’re only for customers who elect to pick up their vehicles in person. You could even try both sites to gauge the best value for a trade-in. The general process of buying a car through Carvana is akin to going through a normal dealer.

Carvana offered her a car loan with a 4.95% rate, while her credit union came in much lower at 1.95%. Upon arrival, soon-to-be car owners receive a giant coin that activates the machine, which then retrieves and delivers the vehicle. But not in the way you’d think. On top of that, Carvana’s all-in price does not bake in any hidden fees.

At this point, car shoppers can “call dibs” on a vehicle of interest. Customers can browse, preview, and purchase a used car all from the Carvana website. Each vehicle’s page contains a 360-degree view of the body.

That way you can increase your odds of getting the best interest rate and lowest monthly payment. There’s also nothing stopping you from using Carvana and CarMax. Here’s a high-level overview: That’s the case even if you forgo Carvana’s extended coverage. Yes, you need car insurance to refinance a car loan.

One person could be overjoyed with their purchase, while another could be frustrated and totally put off. In 2016, it offered about 7,300 different models. They had to work with several Carvana reps just to receive their original cashier’s check. Nothing more.

For instance, Cristy took this approach with her Carvana purchase. Second to paying for your primary residence, owning your car may be one of the biggest expenses you have. Both scheduled and unexpected car maintenance can add up quickly.

Let’s explore them. Once you narrow your search, you can select individual cars for further review. However, consider taking your vehicle to an independent mechanic during your seven-day trial period.

But should you? No salesperson hovering in your shadow. But what else do you need to know? There are several reasons why you might want to refinance your current auto loan. Debating the fair price of a vehicle might sound like a headache.

apply now It’s easy to filter by preferences and compare various vehicles. Carvana claims that its vehicles “have clean titles, no reported accidents, and no reported fire, frame, or flood damage.” To back that claim, Carvana shoppers receive a limited warranty with their vehicle purchase. Below the 3D visual, you’ll find vehicle specs, warranty information, price details, and Carvana’s 150-point inspection. Carvana’s platform nixes the middlemen and makes buying a car more convenient. Carvana does not have the same physical presence as CarMax or a normal dealer.

That said, it does allow for a physical review of a potential car. As of today, Carvana possesses 24 “Car Vending Machines.” These towers are spread across the country in major auto markets. Like standard dealers, Carvana still has physical locations. The inspection partially offsets the uncertainty of buying a vehicle online. Despite its name, Carvana still has drawbacks.

This is especially true when it comes to one of our… With Carvana, you can do everything from your couch. (So long as you have WiFi.) This outmatches any individual dealership &#8212; or even a street full of car lots. Once you select a car, the purchase process is fairly straightforward. If you find faults or simply decide that it’s not your style, you can either return the car to Carvana or trade it back in for another model. In 2020, Carvana reported 244,111 used car sales and 55,204 wholesale transactions. Instead of lot hopping, car buyers can browse Carvana’s clean and intuitive website.

So, there is no negotiation table &#8212; the price you see is what you get. This reserves it for 30 minutes and initiates the purchase process. Of course, they help you determine if the car is a good fit. Vehicles provide a lot of conveniences, but the average person is spending around $10,000 per… Carvana is a digital used car dealership.

This helps ensure everything checks out. But there is a benefit to buying a car in person: You have negotiating power. When you shop with Carvana, you browse solo.

As of June, Carvana boasts a website inventory of more than 45,000 vehicles. As with any product or service, the customer experience is subjective. So long as you have a valid driver’s license and insurance, you can test drive the new vehicle before completing any paperwork. However, just because that’s the popular option doesn’t mean it’s the right one for you.

Thanks to Carvana, you don’t have to buy a car in person anymore. For many car buyers, going from dealer to dealer (and sales rep to sales rep) is less than desirable. Plus, it’s not uncommon to uncover a variety of dealer fees, which can add up quickly. Plus, there’s the added benefit of having your new vehicle delivered to your door within a relatively reasonable amount of time. In that sense, some customers have reported difficulty returning their vehicle to Carvana.

Sell crafts. Dealership hopping can be time-consuming.