Just because your looking at a car in Texas doesn't mean the car didn't come from some other area of the country and was retitled in Texas. Get underneath and check for any signs of rust or any botched modifications that can't be corrected. Use your head and remember "Buyer Beware"
Here in Texas I would look at the back window to see if it needs to be re-sealed. The curved glass sometimes comes loose fromt he factory seal. I'd look at the floor boards, under the carpet, for runst and signes of a leak in the front window or the AC Box leaking water inside the cab.
Look for rust around the rear body mounts. Other than that just the normal stuff you'd normally look for in a car / truck.
Check both rear corners of the storage area behind the seats. Pull the carpet back in each corner & check for rust. The fifth gen elkys have a tendency to rust in the corner seams where the rear wheel well meets the storage area. This can be fixed ( fiberglass patch, etc.) & does not necessarily mean that your elky is - Bad-, just something to be aware of that might need attention.
Thanks to all who sent advice. this girl will be busy!i am going to buy the el camino for $600.00 because the day before we went to pick it up, someone stole it and lcukily thry didn;t get far because she didn;t have any gas. i need to replace the ignition, but she is in good condition. if anyone has tips for repacing the ignition, i'd be grateful
i also live in texas(HOOK 'EM HORNS!) and i looked at many an el camino before i bought mine, and the big think i saw in all of them was rust around the back window. anothere thing(though too late for you) is that the one with the small v8s(267) are harder to sell and thus cheaper. i looked at an 80 up around austin, it was black(mostly) with a 267. it had a seat in it the guy put in, and the speedometer jumped around...just wonderin if it was the one you bought...that would be far out.
What about the panel that holds up the rear window? I am up to my knees in hammering and riveting in new floors, but I am unsure about this leak on the passenger side where the floor would have met up with back wall. Was thinking about just using a lot of silicone, but wondered if water was going to stagnate in a bad spot. Are flood drain holes important?