My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

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fredflinstone
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My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by fredflinstone »

I know some of you are philisophically opposed to buying a used car from a rental car company. This post isn't for you. I hope this post will be helpful to the rest of you.

Hertz declared bankruptcy in May 2020. As part of its bankrupcty deal, the company has until December 31, 2020, to get rid of 182,521 cars.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/compani ... r-BB17waZL

A few days ago I bought a late-model Nissan from Hertz. Based on visual inspection, the car appeared to be in excellent condition (like new). Even though Hertz conducts its own inspection, I had the car inspected a second time by a Firestone mechanic for about $30. For additional peace of mind, the car comes with a 12-month/12,000-mile limited powertrain warranty. Also, I believe buyers are allowed to return the car within 1 week for any reason if they are unhappy with it. (There is a $200 restocking fee.)

I've been driving the car for several days now. So far so good.

I initially tried to buy a used car from a private party on Craigslist--a method I used about a decade ago with great success. However, this time the method did not produce good results. One private party was nonresponsive when I asked him for his full name and the VIN number of the car. Shady. I pulled out of the deal. Another private party pulled out of the deal at the last minute, claiming she decided was too busy to sell the car because she was moving. Many of the used cars on Craigslist are priced above Kelly Blue Book. I believe there are few good deals to be had in private party transactions at this time, especially for late-model Japanese cars (which are in high demand).

By strong contrast, the Hertz car I bought was priced well below Kelly Blue Book. The transaction was smooth, simple, and fast.

I should also point out that some of the cars at Hertz--2020 models with less than 10,000 miles--are practically brand new.

Highly recommended.
Last edited by fredflinstone on Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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acegolfer
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by acegolfer »

Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
McDougal
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by McDougal »

acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I bought a car from Hertz in July in Atlanta, and there was no room for negotiating at that time/place. Doesn't hurt to ask though!
tibbitts
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tibbitts »

I did visit the local Hertz sales and was pleased with the process. The online inventory did not match the actual available cars. Also I was somewhat surprised and disappointed that the cars weren't prepared in a way I'd expect for sale. That seems to be true now for some other used car outlets as well. Little dings and scratches should be relatively cheap for a dealer to fix, maybe through a contracted service, and the results should be better than I can d-i-y. But there was no sales pressure and the purchase fee was disclosed up front (although not in the advertised price, until you click through the pricing area on the app/website.)

Another person I know rented an Avis car in preparation for purchase (the 3-day trial rental.) It was not a good experience. There was a serious mechanical problem, a large fluid leak. Plus again an assortment of cosmetic issues. Unfortunately the 3-day rental wasn't refunded but this really suggests the cars aren't inspected or prepared in any way.
angelescrest
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by angelescrest »

I bought a car from Hertz a few years ago. Went really well, and we saved about 3-4 thousand, though the paint and body definitely had a lot more scratches and dings than a typical used car. With the surge in used car sales currently, maybe this is a good option for some.
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JoMoney
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by JoMoney »

I also bought a Hertz rental car, I bought it before their BK, had it for about a year and half. The car had some light cosmetic scrapes, but was mechanically sound.
I utilized their 'Rent2Buy' option where I chose the car online, then picked it up at a rental location and got to rent it for a few days first, then if I decide to buy it, I just keep it and the rental fee went towards the purchase price. I had been warned by Hertz that sometimes cars are not available as planned, and not to rely on the car to be available at the scheduled time - they would text/email me when the car was ready. I didn't otherwise own a vehicle at the time, and had a planned flight in to LAX and hoped it would all work out in a planned fashion despite the warning... It did not... But despite the schedule not working out as I had hoped, and their warning me that it might not, I felt Hertz went above and beyond when they provided me with a different rental car until my expected one to be purchased was available the following day.

FWIW, despite my over-all good feelings about the purchase and Hertz, I would probably not recommend or use the 'Rent2Buy' option again. The schedule of the car not being available at the time I needed it was a bit of a nuisance, and I was told it's frequently the case the schedule doesn't work on time. Additionally, their people warned me that busy rental locations (LAX is the busiest) are THE WORST place to pick up one of these cars (looking for a specific car can get lost in their lot for hours). Further, looking over the car first in-person and choosing which one might have the features you want and avoid any cosmetic blemishes you might find unbearable is probably best. I would buy from them again, but I would go to one of their sales lots and test drive it rather than use the 'Rent2Buy'.
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BogleMelon
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by BogleMelon »

acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
Ask for "Family and friends $250 discount" :wink:
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egrets
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by egrets »

So what's happening with the bankruptcy? Is Hertz vanishing vs. being taken over? What about Avis and Enterprise? I rent from Enterprise about twice a year...
bob60014
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by bob60014 »

Thinking more of the 2020 and 2019s and depending on the make/model/year, it may be beneficial to check new vehicles at a dealer. The new car price maybe similar or slightly more than the Hertz price for a used vehicle, plus you get a full warranty. It pays to shop around.
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fredflinstone
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by fredflinstone »

acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I don't know, but I know for sure you can haggle the price of the extended warranty.
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tibbitts
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tibbitts »

fredflinstone wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:27 am
acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I don't know, but I know for sure you can haggle the price of the extended warranty.
Specifically at Hertz?
tibbitts
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tibbitts »

bob60014 wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:20 am Thinking more of the 2020 and 2019s and depending on the make/model/year, it may be beneficial to check new vehicles at a dealer. The new car price maybe similar or slightly more than the Hertz price for a used vehicle, plus you get a full warranty. It pays to shop around.
I don't understand the "full warranty" comment. I thought the manufacturer warranty transferred the same regardless of where you buy a vehicle, with the exception of CPO programs that may extend portions of the warranty that are not available from other sources. A very small percentage of used cars are CPO and are usually priced correspondingly higher. The Hertz warranty is for the majority of their cars that have, or will shortly, pass the manufacturer warranty period, and I don't think is less (and sometimes more) than you'll get from a dealer. I would probably only buy a car well within the manufacturer bumper-to-bumper warranty period.
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Watty
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by Watty »

I bought one from then 15+ years ago and it worked out just fine.

One thing I like about buying a car from a rental company is that you know that them selling it is just part of their normal business plan so you know why they are selling it. When you buy a car that is just a few years old from an individual you have to wonder if there is something wrong with the car which is why they are selling it.

You do still need to price out the deal since when I have looked there web site over the years they seem to price the more popular brands, like Toyota, pretty high.
fredflinstone wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 5:53 am A few days ago I bought a late-model Nissan from Hertz. ......

For additional peace of mind, the car comes with a 12-month/12,000-mile limited powertrain warranty.
You also get the remainder of the manufacturer's warranty so be sure to understand that since you get several different warranties. You can check the manufacturer's web site to see the details but be sure you are looking the warranty for that specific model year.

You can call a dealership or the manufacturer and give them the VIN to find out the date when the ar was first sold.

1) Full warranty, typically three years 36K miles
2) Manufacturer powertrain warranty, typically 5 years 60K miles. This is likely still valid for your car so the Hertz Powertrain warranty may not mean much.
3) Emission component warranty, this varies by state and is much longer in California. I once got a car's computer replaced for free with this when the car had something like 70k miles.


A few things to watch out for when buying a rental car.

1) The car rental sales lots may sometimes sell cars that were not rental cars like lease returns or cars they got somewhere else.

2) Be sure that you get all the parts like spare tires, jacks, second key key, etc.

3) You may want to get some additional keys made since they can be expensive if you get in a bind and have to get one at a dealership. The cost varies greatly by make and model but with some models and you can likely find a forum for just that model which will have information about the best way to get a key made for your model. If you get to the point where you do not have a working key it can be even more expensive to get a new key made.
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beyou
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by beyou »

While my experience is very old, I had a very good experience buying my very first car from Hertz.
Bought a 2 year old Ford Mustang.

Only problems I had with it were

1) an emissions chip failure that multiple dealers and mechanics could not resolve until I found one who could.
And it was under a secret Ford warrantee so Ford paid to fix past usual warrantee.

2) Steering pump was having issues, during warrantee period. Mechanic said it was a hose which is NOT covered but if I wait, the pump will fail
and then it WILL be covered. It did fail, was covered and repaired at the expense of Hertz warrantee provider.

I held the car for a few short years, had ZERO repair cost and then sold it for same as I paid.
The car cost me nothing but gas, oil changes to own.

Wish I could buy all my cars from Hertz. When I looked into this again years later it didn't seem to be as feasible an option in my new location.
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BogleFanGal
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by BogleFanGal »

I hear lots of good things and came close to pulling the trigger this year, but kept hemming and hawing and the cars were sold before I made a decision. Snooze, ya lose - story of my life...too overcautious.

Only thing I don't like about rental car purchases is that accidents are rarely reported on carfax...rental car companies have their repairs/body work done internally, so even new, low mileage models may have small fender benders or something bigger in their history that shoppers will hopefully discover through a mechanic's prepurchase inspection. If there's structural damage, I believe it must be disclosed clearly at auto auction, but again, not necessarily included on the car fax.
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tj
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tj »

tibbitts wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:31 am
fredflinstone wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:27 am
acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I don't know, but I know for sure you can haggle the price of the extended warranty.
Specifically at Hertz?
I don't know why you would buy the Hertz warranty. You get the manufacturer's warranty. I declined all the Hertz addons. I bought a 2018 Nissan in January 2019 when I moved to Hawaii. It was much more cost efficient than any other way to buy a vehicle. I did the Rent2Buy. I was pleased with the experience. I took the car with me back to the mainland and carvana quote is slightly higher than what i paid Hertz for the car.
renter
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by renter »

Nicely done Fred. I like them, too. Bought a car there once in immaculate condition except for scratches on the front bumper. The salesman said if I bought it he would repaint the bumper and give me a "test ride" car for the day while I waited. It worked great. The best car I ever had I purchased from a seller who had previously purchased from Hertz.
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by Northern Flicker »

My last car purchase was a former Avis rental car that was a 6-year-old car I bought on craigslist from someone who in turn had bought it as a 1-year-old retired rental car. I drove it trouble free for another 11 years.

Lease returns require showing records of scheduled maintenance so they also are a reasonable source for a used car.
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fredflinstone
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by fredflinstone »

tibbitts wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:31 am
fredflinstone wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:27 am
acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I don't know, but I know for sure you can haggle the price of the extended warranty.
Specifically at Hertz?
Yes. When I turned down the extended warranty, they offered to reduce its price by "a couple hundred dollars."
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TallBoy29er
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by TallBoy29er »

I hope it wasn't the Firestone mechanic that scewred up the oil change from another thread: :shock:

viewtopic.php?p=5517736#p5517736
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StevieG72
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by StevieG72 »

I bought one from them a few years ago. Good price, no major issues, still under factory warranty. The only weird thing with the transaction is a proprietary navigation system was in the car that they were supposed to remove. They never removed it, it still worked, and may be still in the car to this day. (ex-gf owns the car)
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tibbitts
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tibbitts »

tj wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 1:42 pm
tibbitts wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:31 am
fredflinstone wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 10:27 am
acegolfer wrote: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:02 am Is it true that there's no room for price negotiation/haggling?
I don't know, but I know for sure you can haggle the price of the extended warranty.
Specifically at Hertz?
I don't know why you would buy the Hertz warranty. You get the manufacturer's warranty. I declined all the Hertz addons. I bought a 2018 Nissan in January 2019 when I moved to Hawaii. It was much more cost efficient than any other way to buy a vehicle. I did the Rent2Buy. I was pleased with the experience. I took the car with me back to the mainland and carvana quote is slightly higher than what i paid Hertz for the car.
I don't think you would buy the Hertz warranty, but the issue is whether you were aware of Hertz, specifically, negotiating any terms of any kind. If they would negotiate warranties, then you could make a case that they might negotiate car prices.
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by loveablefellow »

I purchased a 2011 INFINITI M37 from Hertz with a 2 year remaining factory warranty. It was the worst automobile purchase I ever made.

Hertz knew or should have known the automobile had electrical issues, but never said anything in writing or otherwise.

The Infiniti electrical system could not be suspended from the battery while the car sat idle in the garage, parking lot, etc. despite being locked. Most automobiles stop the battery from being drained when locked and only allow a trickle of electricity to keep all the bells and whistles running until you are ready to start the car.

I had the Infiniti charged by AAA 5/6 times, I had the battery changed by the dealer, and I had the car towed to the local Infiniti dealer several times. The Infiniti dealer tried to help, but nothing worked for very long. After about a year, I sold the Infiniti to Carmax and never looked back.

I do not recommend buying any used automobile from a rental company without a pre-purchase inspection by a factory authorized dealer unless the car is out of warranty. If no warranty, run as fast as you can to door and never go back.

I will never rent any car from Hertz. Hertz's bankruptcy may be due indirectly to Covid-19, but Karma is a bitch.
tibbitts
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by tibbitts »

loveablefellow wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 8:56 am I purchased a 2011 INFINITI M37 from Hertz with a 2 year remaining factory warranty. It was the worst automobile purchase I ever made.

Hertz knew or should have known the automobile had electrical issues, but never said anything in writing or otherwise.

The Infiniti electrical system could not be suspended from the battery while the car sat idle in the garage, parking lot, etc. despite being locked. Most automobiles stop the battery from being drained when locked and only allow a trickle of electricity to keep all the bells and whistles running until you are ready to start the car.

I had the Infiniti charged by AAA 5/6 times, I had the battery changed by the dealer, and I had the car towed to the local Infiniti dealer several times. The Infiniti dealer tried to help, but nothing worked for very long. After about a year, I sold the Infiniti to Carmax and never looked back.

I do not recommend buying any used automobile from a rental company without a pre-purchase inspection by a factory authorized dealer unless the car is out of warranty. If no warranty, run as fast as you can to door and never go back.

I will never rent any car from Hertz. Hertz's bankruptcy may be due indirectly to Covid-19, but Karma is a bitch.
Well, this isn't exactly a unique problem to Hertz. You should post over in the battery thread where some Bogleheads (not me!) will tell you that battery drain issues are easy to identify.

I can envision the people you dealt with at Hertz having no clue about the problem your car had. I would be much, much more disappointed in Infinity: you had the bumper-to-bumper warranty and the dealer (only one?) that you claim tried to be helpful was unable to resolve this problem. I seriously doubt Hertz did anything magical to sabotage your car. Cars have problems, that's what warranties are for. Somebody failed you here, but I don't see it as being Hertz.

Did you disclose the problem to Carmax?
Purdue
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Re: My good experience buying a Hertz rental car

Post by Purdue »

We bought a 2017 Camry from Hertz in 2018. Has been running perfect since.
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