Check under the body just behind the front wheels, the lift points are a spot many cars have rotten.
Check behind the passenger side rear tire, behind the shock, gas leaks here wash away any rust protection and there are usually holes there.
Check the area under the battery location in the trunk, check this area from the underside of the car.
Check the Licence plate area, and the entire area of the licence plate lights. If you can remove the interior cover and look from inside the trunk as well.
Check the rocker panels just ahead of the rear wheel arches. Rust here is a pain to fix. Also check the wheel arches as well. I'd use a magnet in a sock so it won't scratch anything.
Lastly if you want to be really picky check the bottom of the rear subframe for any heavy rust or cracks, and the front subframe for holes rusted through the sides. I've also seen trailing arm spring perches almost rusted off, likewise for the upper perches.
If the car has holes where the front jack points are, or in the rocker panels where the rear subframe mounts to the car, or through the rear upper spring perches it is then a $500 car in my opinion. Commonly these are rust areas that become extremely difficult to repair and makes the car nearly worthless to the average buyer. If you are a welder or your best buddy is a welder, it could be worthwile to buy, but like I said... I wouldn't spend more than $500 at that point unless the car has some really useful parts.
Performance one step at a time.
Last edited by InfiniteDice; 11-25-2010 at 02:07 AM.