What You Need To Know About The Car Scrappage Program

What You Need To Know About The Car Scrappage Program


Car Allowance Rebate SystemSayEducate has been keeping tabs on the “cash for clunkers” legislation as it was being debated in Congress. For the past several months members of the House and the Senate have been working on a bill whereby consumers might be able to turn their older vehicles in for scrappage, receiving a federal credit in exchange for buying a new car.

Well, a bill was passed by both the House and the Senate and signed into law by President Obama last week. Though certain details still must be hammered out, the “Car Allowance Rebate System” (or CARS) program as it is called will kick in no later than July 23rd, giving consumers an unusual and limited time opportunity to save money on their new car purchase.

Not every consumer will be eligible to participate in the CARS program for several reasons: only one billion dollars was set aside for the program which means at $3500 to $4500 a pop, 250,000 new cars will be covered. The program is scheduled to last until November 1st or when funds dry up, with the likelihood that happening much sooner being great.

Another thing consumers need to keep in mind is that most eligible vehicles must get 18 mpg or worse and can’t be older than a 1984 model. There are a number of vehicles that meet this criteria, but the new vehicle being purchased has to meet certain fuel mileage requirements in order to qualify.

In order to find out if you qualify and what the program is all about, the federal government wants consumers to know about Cars.gov, a site created to explain the program as well as share with you current information. In addition, the CARS website can help you with:

Determine if you qualify — If you meet the program’s parameters then you can start shopping around for a new car.

Bring paperwork — When you’re ready to buy, then you need to bring your paperwork with you to the new car showroom. Buyers need to have their registration, title and insurance information with them. Dealers will be checking to make sure that your car is drivable and has been registered and insured for the past year.

Dealer’s responsibility — Eligible buyers will be able to knock $3500 to $4500 off of the final negotiated price for their vehicle, but it’ll be up to the new car dealer to get his credit from the federal government. This means that once the dealer determines your eligibility, they’ll subtract the federal credit from your price. Your dealer will “deal” with the government from this point on, not you.

Will the federal government extend the CARS program if it turns out to be more popular than anticipated? Perhaps. However, if you want to participate then check your eligibility and gather your paperwork right away.  Once the program starts showroom traffic will increase sharply which means that you’ll have to act fast in order to get the car that you want.

Adv. — If you are considering purchasing a new car, there are some steps you can take to make sure that you get the best deal. Come on over and visit SayLending.com for auto loans information including new car research to help you find the vehicle that meets your needs.


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About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".