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Stupid Question: What is the most affordable way to get a Model S

purplewalt

Active Member
Jun 9, 2013
1,630
582
Dallas, Texas
Have a clean credit history and a good credit rating.
Have a stable job history where you have an identified source of income to repay the loan.
Identify where you live and look at the available Superchargers in your region and how you think you would use the car on a daily, monthly and yearly basis.
Maybe look @ a new 70 or a 70D
Or and inventory car
Or a CPO
Credit union financing
 

Ugliest1

S85: "Sparky"
Aug 19, 2013
1,401
1,645
Victoria BC Canada
I don't have an answer, but here's a couple of comments, from someone who really had to stretch finances to make the leap:
- buy Tesla shares even though they are now expensive... I'm hoping (but use your own market sense) they'll appreciate by as much as 50% by next summer
- unless you have a long daily commute, it's pretty tough to figure a reduced total cost of ownership lower than your garden-variety $25k-$40k vehicle based on purchase price, gas and maintenance savings (over, say, 8 years). I couldn't do it spending about $2,000 in gas costs per year, but I made the leap anyway.
- the flip side to the above point is YES, IT'S ABSOLUTELY WORTH IT!!!!!!!! Just on the driving experience alone, let alone environmental benefits
- think for the long term life of the car (10-15 years?), to help get the TCO numbers into realistic manageable yearly average costs. But then of course if you can only afford a 10-year plan, you'll have to stick with that car for 10+ years (unless significant positive financial changes happen). I personally don't see that as a problem, I think of it as being my "permanent car".
 
Nov 18, 2014
137
23
Great advice everyone! Now a few things everyone should know. I'm only 19 years old (young? Yes but i am a hardcore tesla fan!) and I can put a $3000 down payment. I can also wait a year or two before actually taking action to get the car.
 

gsxdsm

Member
Aug 31, 2015
708
471
CA
You should invest your money now and wait a bit for a Tesla. 30 yr old you will be much happier that you decided to be smart with your money now. You have plenty of time for a Tesla, but every dollar wasted now is several hundred dollars you'll never see when you're older.
 

S4WRXTTCS

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2015
5,458
6,209
Snohomish, WA
Save up and invest until you can afford either a Certified preowned 70D, or a certified preowned 85D. Make sure it has the AutoPilot hardware which I believe all the D's have.

Also keep in mind the Model 3 will be one hell of a car. Sure it's going to priced lower than the Model S, but they're going to use everything they've learned from the Model S when designing that car.
 

andyaycw

Member
Oct 1, 2015
75
56
Garden Grove, CA
You should invest your money now and wait a bit for a Tesla. 30 yr old you will be much happier that you decided to be smart with your money now. You have plenty of time for a Tesla, but every dollar wasted now is several hundred dollars you'll never see when you're older.

This is great advice. With the power of compounding, I would also strongly recommend a habit of saving early on, your future self will thank you for it. This is the same route that I took - many years of sacrifice and hard work and saving early on, and at the ripe old age of 27, I now find myself to be a homeowner and very-soon-to-be Tesla owner (expecting delivery late this month). It really makes it that much more satisfying too with that delayed gratification.

Another thing to keep in mind - if and when you do decide to purchase a Tesla (presumably with some form of financing from a bank or credit union), I would think about finding a lender that is likely to finance that loan for you at reasonable terms. Myself, I went through a local credit union. They gave me a hard time but I decided it was worth it since they had one of the lowest rates I could find. They originally wanted to decline me since I never had a history of taking out such a large auto loan or making such large auto loan payments (I guess having a mortgage for nearly 2 years with much larger payments didn't count - it had to specifically be an auto loan). That was literally the one and only reason they could think of to decline me. I won't bore you with the details (unless you really want to know), but I was forced to speak with them underwriter-to-underwriter. I put on my underwriter hat and made my case to their underwriter, diving into the technical details of every aspect of my loan application (income, credit, credit history, types of accounts, average age of accounts, inquiries, utilization, accounts recently opened, DTI, and much, much more). I'm far more knowledgeable about this stuff than most other underwriters I've dealt with. They had no good comebacks, and ended up approving me.

Point is - with a short credit history and a shorter track record of stability of income/employment, it may be difficult to find a lender willing to finance you on their best rates. Some research and early preparation now might help you eek out a bit of a better rate when you're ready in a year or two, and depending on the amount you decide on financing, could save you quite a bit of money over the life of that loan.

I wish you the best!
 
Nov 18, 2014
137
23
This is great advice. With the power of compounding, I would also strongly recommend a habit of saving early on, your future self will thank you for it. This is the same route that I took - many years of sacrifice and hard work and saving early on, and at the ripe old age of 27, I now find myself to be a homeowner and very-soon-to-be Tesla owner (expecting delivery late this month). It really makes it that much more satisfying too with that delayed gratification.

Another thing to keep in mind - if and when you do decide to purchase a Tesla (presumably with some form of financing from a bank or credit union), I would think about finding a lender that is likely to finance that loan for you at reasonable terms. Myself, I went through a local credit union. They gave me a hard time but I decided it was worth it since they had one of the lowest rates I could find. They originally wanted to decline me since I never had a history of taking out such a large auto loan or making such large auto loan payments (I guess having a mortgage for nearly 2 years with much larger payments didn't count - it had to specifically be an auto loan). That was literally the one and only reason they could think of to decline me. I won't bore you with the details (unless you really want to know), but I was forced to speak with them underwriter-to-underwriter. I put on my underwriter hat and made my case to their underwriter, diving into the technical details of every aspect of my loan application (income, credit, credit history, types of accounts, average age of accounts, inquiries, utilization, accounts recently opened, DTI, and much, much more). I'm far more knowledgeable about this stuff than most other underwriters I've dealt with. They had no good comebacks, and ended up approving me.

Point is - with a short credit history and a shorter track record of stability of income/employment, it may be difficult to find a lender willing to finance you on their best rates. Some research and early preparation now might help you eek out a bit of a better rate when you're ready in a year or two, and depending on the amount you decide on financing, could save you quite a bit of money over the life of that loan.

I wish you the best!


I will take your advice and simply save up. Who knows my 2025 Model S will probably have a 700 mile range and fly lol
 

mmccord

Active Member
Dec 9, 2014
1,002
497
Pine Bush, NY
The most affordable way to get a model S is clearly to steal one.

Of course, you won't get to keep it very long, and will probably end up in jail, but you can't beat free.
 

Xenoilphobe

Active Member
Jan 2, 2014
4,583
4,308
Fairfax County, Virginia
Buy used and go private party sale. I only bid on ebaymotors the price I wanted to pay until I was able the pay the price I wanted. I bid for over four months until I got my 2014 P85+ loaded for under $80K earlier this year. Don't ever pay what everyone is asking - be patient and be willing to make concessions on other things. For example, I didn't really want Black, but thats what I ended up with because the deal was too good to pass up, and after owning it for six months it has grown on me.

also wait until the X is in full production swing and you should be able to get a sweet deal on a S85 RWD - they will be flooding the market.

Also setup an alert on eBay to see what the market is really doing as they sell. Dump all the Stealership sales out to see what the private party sales are going for.

Finally - become an Uber driver on the weekends and make your car payment by working 8 extra days a month - this car is worth it.
 

Plan B

Active Member
May 8, 2015
4,853
2,229
Portland OR
Great advice everyone! Now a few things everyone should know. I'm only 19 years old (young? Yes but i am a hardcore tesla fan!) and I can put a $3000 down payment. I can also wait a year or two before actually taking action to get the car.

Get sugar daddy or mama, which ever you prefer :wink:
 

Patrick W

Active Member
Mar 17, 2015
1,478
885
SLC, UT
It's nice to see someone other than me is really having to stretch the budget to get a Tesla. Too often I see folks on the forums saying things that lead me to believe they're 1 percenters. (Nothing against 1%ers. In fact I'd like to be one.:) )

In my case (retired government worker) I'd been saving for years to buy an airplane. I'm currently part owner in a small 4 seat Cessna but really wanted something that goes faster, higher and carries more weight. But after years of saving someone showed up at the airport with his roadster. And then a few days later he showed up with his Model S. Suddenly I was in lust with Tesla and it didn't take long for my Cessna 310 account to become a Tesla Model S account. Regrets? Not really. I now have a car that goes faster and carries more weight than my plane (still working on getting it to go higher). :)
 

Xenoilphobe

Active Member
Jan 2, 2014
4,583
4,308
Fairfax County, Virginia
I'm with Doug, find a lonely sugar mama or two or three - there are lots of professional women in the DC area that need a weekend boy toy! Craigslist is filled with them.

Second option - buy a Townhouse near a university and rent out all the rooms covering your payment. You get the tax break and the equity that the house build over the years at the same time - start a small business (it can be anything - mowing lawns, etc. , buy the X as a business asset and write off $25K the first year).

Sugar mama is easier, but can get complicated...
 

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