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Duffers Guide to Buying a 2nd Hand Car in SG ?

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Postby nutnut » Tue, 24 Jan 2012 8:30 am

christay wrote:We have no lemon laws here, and consumer protection is only just becoming somewhat enforceable.


Erm, yes you do!

xinmsn link

Singapore Law Society

FYI.

How come shops here seem to think there is no consumer protection and basically they can just do what they like, this is not true, although you need to know about it and how to quote and enforce it.
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Re: Buying a classic car

Postby Strong Eagle » Tue, 24 Jan 2012 12:49 pm

Desmonaut wrote:Hi
I have a few options on mid-80s to early 90s cars - ferraris and mercedes. Now most have their COE renewed till 2019 or 2020. One needs its COE renewed.

Would appreciate any advice on what this means financially. I know I can drive these cars on teh road now, but what happens in a couple of years? The reduction in the COE obviously makes it less attractive, but by how much? Any other parameters/tests I should look out for?

Cheers, Deboor


A mid 80's car will have it COE expire in the mid 201x. The car will be 30 years old at that point and cannot be renewed at all. It must be scrapped. It could be converted to 'antique' but you really cannot drive it except for special occasions.

Update on 5 Sep 2012: I am wrong. You can renew the COE on a car as many times as you want. Question is: on a thirty year old car, would you really want to cough up S$60,000?


An early 90's car can be renewed one more time... these cars are probably Cat B (larger than 1.5 liter engine). In August, the COE was $76K. Now, it's $68K.

Therefore, if you are contemplating a car with a COE that expires in 2012, you should consider that whatever you pay the owner will have an additional $70K or so added on to it for ten more years of COE, half that if you scrap in five years.

I know a guy who gave up an excellent Mercedes because he wasn't going to pay $76K to put a used car back on the road.
Last edited by Strong Eagle on Wed, 05 Sep 2012 7:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Buying a classic car

Postby Desmonaut » Wed, 25 Jan 2012 2:27 pm

Strong Eagle wrote:
Desmonaut wrote:Hi
I have a few options on mid-80s to early 90s cars - ferraris and mercedes. Now most have their COE renewed till 2019 or 2020. One needs its COE renewed.

Would appreciate any advice on what this means financially. I know I can drive these cars on teh road now, but what happens in a couple of years? The reduction in the COE obviously makes it less attractive, but by how much? Any other parameters/tests I should look out for?

Cheers, Deboor


A mid 80's car will have it COE expire in the mid 201x. The car will be 30 years old at that point and cannot be renewed at all. It must be scrapped. It could be converted to 'antique' but you really cannot drive it except for special occasions.

An early 90's car can be renewed one more time... these cars are probably Cat B (larger than 1.5 liter engine). In August, the COE was $76K. Now, it's $68K.

Therefore, if you are contemplating a car with a COE that expires in 2012, you should consider that whatever you pay the owner will have an additional $70K or so added on to it for ten more years of COE, half that if you scrap in five years.

I know a guy who gave up an excellent Mercedes because he wasn't going to pay $76K to put a used car back on the road.


Hi Strong Eagle -thanks for that reply. Very helpful.

The early 90s car is a 3.0L Mercedes registered 1992 and has a COE running till 2019. So presumably it can be renewed once more in 2019?

But am puzzled by the 30-year limit - another option has popped up on a 1981 car with COE paid till 2018 - I reckon it was renewed for the last time in 2008...? So in 2018, I shall have to get a really large living room and display it there?

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Re: Buying a classic car

Postby Strong Eagle » Wed, 25 Jan 2012 3:43 pm

Desmonaut wrote:
Strong Eagle wrote:
Desmonaut wrote:Hi
I have a few options on mid-80s to early 90s cars - ferraris and mercedes. Now most have their COE renewed till 2019 or 2020. One needs its COE renewed.

Would appreciate any advice on what this means financially. I know I can drive these cars on teh road now, but what happens in a couple of years? The reduction in the COE obviously makes it less attractive, but by how much? Any other parameters/tests I should look out for?

Cheers, Deboor


A mid 80's car will have it COE expire in the mid 201x. The car will be 30 years old at that point and cannot be renewed at all. It must be scrapped. It could be converted to 'antique' but you really cannot drive it except for special occasions.

An early 90's car can be renewed one more time... these cars are probably Cat B (larger than 1.5 liter engine). In August, the COE was $76K. Now, it's $68K.

Therefore, if you are contemplating a car with a COE that expires in 2012, you should consider that whatever you pay the owner will have an additional $70K or so added on to it for ten more years of COE, half that if you scrap in five years.

I know a guy who gave up an excellent Mercedes because he wasn't going to pay $76K to put a used car back on the road.


Hi Strong Eagle -thanks for that reply. Very helpful.

The early 90s car is a 3.0L Mercedes registered 1992 and has a COE running till 2019. So presumably it can be renewed once more in 2019?


Something doesn't add up here. If this car was registered in 1992, then that is when the first COE would have been bought. It would have been renewed in 2002, and then again in 2012 (this year). A COE can be renewed for only five years but then the car MUST be scrapped... and in any case, that would only take you out to 2017. You need to find out what is not correct... either the registration date would have to be 1999 or the COE date as specified is not correct.

But am puzzled by the 30-year limit - another option has popped up on a 1981 car with COE paid till 2018 - I reckon it was renewed for the last time in 2008...? So in 2018, I shall have to get a really large living room and display it there?


Again, something is fishy with the dates. Unless this 1981 car was registered only in 1998 (and I don't see how that could happen unless it sat on a show room floor for 7 years), a 1981 car must be renewed in 1991 and again in 2001. I don't see how you get to 2018 at all. COE's must be done in 10 year increments. You can only renew one month in advance of expiration and if you fail to renew more than one month, your car is deregistered and the COE cannot be renewed at all. So, you need to check dates for a definitive answer.

I stand corrected on one thing now that I've checked... there is no limit to the number of times you can renew a COE for car or motorcycle. So, a 1981 registered car could be renewed in 1991, 2001, 2011, and again, in 2021.

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Thanks

Postby Desmonaut » Wed, 25 Jan 2012 10:00 pm

Thank you, dear Strong Eagle! :-)

I need to do some more investigation. There are actually 3-4 cars I've got as options. The 1992 Mercedes guy said the COE can be renewed more than one month in advance, but you lose the value of the remaining portion and the COE gets reset immediately. And apparently one of the previous owners who had to leave Singapore was forced to renew it at an odd time in order to be able to sell it thereby losing money. Could perhaps explain it, but you're right - it needs a lot more careful investigation.
Thanks again.

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Re: Buying a classic car

Postby christay » Mon, 30 Jan 2012 4:29 pm

"Something doesn't add up here. If this car was registered in 1992, then that is when the first COE would have been bought. It would have been renewed in 2002, and then again in 2012 (this year). A COE can be renewed for only five years but then the car MUST be scrapped... and in any case, that would only take you out to 2017. You need to find out what is not correct... either the registration date would have to be 1999 or the COE date as specified is not correct.

But am puzzled by the 30-year limit - another option has popped up on a 1981 car with COE paid till 2018 - I reckon it was renewed for the last time in 2008...? So in 2018, I shall have to get a really large living room and display it there?


Again, something is fishy with the dates. Unless this 1981 car was registered only in 1998 (and I don't see how that could happen unless it sat on a show room floor for 7 years), a 1981 car must be renewed in 1991 and again in 2001. I don't see how you get to 2018 at all. COE's must be done in 10 year increments. You can only renew one month in advance of expiration and if you fail to renew more than one month, your car is deregistered and the COE cannot be renewed at all. So, you need to check dates for a definitive answer.

I stand corrected on one thing now that I've checked... there is no limit to the number of times you can renew a COE for car or motorcycle. So, a 1981 registered car could be renewed in 1991, 2001, 2011, and again, in 2021.[/quote]

Hi,

There is no restriction as to when you renew the COE as long as it's done before it expires.

In August 2001, many people with 1.6 cars renewed because there was an anomaly due to the "crash" in coe prices for Category A that brought the renewal premium down to 18k. so you would have seen plenty of 1993 cars with COEs expiring in 2011. Total life would have only been 18 years.

When you renew early, you simply lose the remaining value on the current COE.

In 2008/2009, the same situation arose, plenty of people renewed early because the COEs were at lows.

When buying a COE renewed car, one very important question to ask the seller and to verify (see the onemotoring printout) is if the last COE renewal was for 5 or 10 years. If it was for 5 years, the car will be killed at the end of the 5th year, no further renewal will be allowed.

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Postby zzm9980 » Fri, 02 Mar 2012 3:08 pm

I'm really sorry if this has been explained previously, but I read all of it and I fear I'm just not "getting it"... I guess I'll just work out the math as I understand it, you can tell me where I'm wrong.

I don't know if I can link this or not, but here is a Civic I'll use as an example.
http://www.sgcarmart.com/used_cars/info ... ?ID=238648

(Not sure I want to buy this specific one, I believe it would be more prudent to buy something ~4 years old, but lets use it as an example.

anyway:
Price $110,000
Road Tax $1,210 / year
Engine Cap 1,998 cc
Reg Date 19-May-2011
COE $57,000
OMV $27,907
Depreciation $10,478 / year


According to the site, it has 109 months left of COE. so I'll just calculate to the month:
COE = 109 months / 120 = 51775 of original 57000
OMV = 27907
COE + OMV = 79682

Not sure how Road Tax works in that total price but let's just add 10 years worth in. (Someone please tell me if that's how it works?)
COE + OMV + 10yr RoadTax = 91782

There is still a 18218 "premium" on this car based on the asking price of 110000. Is this based on the variance in the COE value between when it was issued and the current price? Or is this something else? (Dealer gouging? Maybe a bit of both?) Is it fair to assume this entire 18218 is negotiable? If not, is there a rough formula or guideline I can use to figure out what percentage of this "premium" is negotiable?

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Postby sanjivvohra » Fri, 02 Mar 2012 7:44 pm

Aaaah! Now I know why I lease!
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Postby zzm9980 » Fri, 02 Mar 2012 10:36 pm

Here's another one:
http://www.sgcarmart.com/used_cars/info ... ?ID=239424
Price $76,800
Road Tax $620 / year
Transmission Auto
Engine Cap 1,390 cc
Reg Date 26-Oct-2007
COE $12,401
OMV $27,299

66 months left on COE.

So just completely ignoring the COE value of this car, and going with the current Cat A price of 57009...

COE @ current price w/ 66 months = 31354

COE + OMV + 6 years road tax = 31354 + 27299 + 620 * 6 =
62373

That's a lot lower than the 76k. So someone please tell me what I'm doing wrong here, or how much of that roughly I should expect to be negotiable. I don't want to walk in and look like a fool here... :)

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Postby zzm9980 » Sun, 04 Mar 2012 7:30 pm

Still very curious here... When I price out more expensive cars, especially those on Cat B COEs, say a 5yr old BMW 3-Series, the price actually seem "fair", adding up correctly, and actually charging under today's COE rates.

So still looking for advice with my math (or "sums" for the Brits :D ), and/or just general advice on how much of a bargaining window I have in Singapore when the asking price is a lot higher than OMV + remaining COE.

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Postby QRM » Mon, 05 Mar 2012 9:18 am

zzm9980 wrote:I'm really sorry if this has been explained previously, but I read all of it and I fear I'm just not "getting it"...


Good to see I am not the only one, its all Greek to me! its was obviously invented for the Singaporean straight A maths type mentality with way to much time on their hands.

This place is the only place in the world where I would buy a new car, I just ask how much is the "on the road price" that way no one knows my brains limitation. After 6 years years here I haven't got a clue how all this NETS, LTA, ERP, COE, OMV, CAT B, OPC, ARF, PARF, BARF stuff works.

When it comes to selling I ask for "Cash in the Wallet" price, thats it, not interested in all the gibberish that comes with car purchases here.

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Postby zzm9980 » Mon, 05 Mar 2012 9:33 am

QRM wrote:When it comes to selling I ask for "Cash in the Wallet" price, thats it, not interested in all the gibberish that comes with car purchases here.


Neither was I until I realized that the "prices" quoted didn't seem to add up, and that they might be taking me for a ride (well, my company haha) for a couple hundred a month. Almost the price difference between me getting a Civic and 320i, so I want to sort this out :P

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Postby x9200 » Mon, 05 Mar 2012 9:58 am

Ok, this is how I see it. Things like COE or OMV are listed to let you know how much you will get if you are going to deregister the car and get some rebate. $76,800 is what you are going to pay anyway regardless the components. If, like myself, you are going to use the car for purely practical reasons and till the end of the COE life you should probably be only interested in the final price or the installments you pay as this is what goes to your monthly budget and the rest is not really that important.
The price difference: OMV is the value estimated by the customs so this is not necessarily the Singapore marked value. It is closer to how much in average somebody had to pay for a car to bring it to Singapore including of course the price of the car. You can buy a camera in the States and send it to SG paying $300 for everything. This is your OMV. The same camera sold in SG can be 50% more expensive even if the taxes are like 7%.
Road tax is not a part of any equation except your yearly budget.

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Clarity

Postby christay » Mon, 05 Mar 2012 10:45 am

OMV = Open market value = declared and agreed import value of that particular car.

The same model, registered in the same month, can have a different OMV depending on when it cleared customs, and the exchange rate that day and also specific specs that were factory fitted (eg with/without cruise control / sunroof, etc).

OMV is the figure upon which ARF, import duty and GST are calculated at point of entry / registration.

When buying a used car, the OMV figure is used in 2 ways:

1) To calculate depreciation
2) To calculate current tax rebates or "paper value".

The current "paper value" is today (I stress today), only relevant for cars 2005 (generally) and older for the purpose of valuation.

For cars newer than those valued on the paper value method above, the COE component does not factor into valuation directly, but can have a bearing, especially if it is an ultra low coe.

For such newer cars, OMV is only used to work out the end value, and therefore depreciation, which is the commonly used valuation method.

For very new used cars, valuation is also done on a "versus a new car" basis, or a discount to the new car price.

For such cars eg 2 years old and younger, in today's inflated market, valuation has unfortunately little to do with OMV etc.

For cars 3 years and older, generally OMV is used to work out depreciation.

The older the car, the more accurate the prediction will be on your capital loss over a shorter ownership period as the OMV, and subsequently, paper value, becomes more relevant.

I think generally, how much you can negotiate depends on how badly the dealer wants to sell the car, and his perception of his price competitiveness relative to comparable cars out there.

Good luck with the negotiations.

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Postby zzm9980 » Mon, 05 Mar 2012 11:09 am

Thanks Chris. This definitely confirms what I've noticed then... I can semi-accurately predict car's values for older models, but not newer, based on OMV and COE. Makes sense I suppose. Looks like it'll be a Civic and not 3-series for me :(


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