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Negotiating Tips When Buying a Car

August 16th, 2013

looking for a carAs many of us have learned, looking for a car can be a strenuous process. We’re written a previous blog on what to do before buying a new car to help you get organized and in the right mindset when looking for a car, but negotiating can be an intimidating process. For some folks, the sticker price seems like a stern statement and they’ll simply ask about current promotions to lower the price. However, it’s important to remember that most vehicles are priced with a bit of wiggle room. Buying a new car is an expensive part of your life, and it’s important that you get the best value possible. Car sellers are primed for the negotiations process, so as you’re looking for a car – you should also be prepared to get the price as low as you can.

Here are a few tips on how to negotiate effectively when buying a new car:  

Have your finances in order. When you’re buying a new car, you need to first have a clear understanding that you can afford the big-ticket purchase. Review your monthly expenses versus your income. Additionally, it can be helpful to get loan approval from your personal bank. The car dealership may be able to offer you better financing, but it’s always good to know ahead of time how much you’ll get approved for.

Utilize the Internet both before and during the negotiating process. With so many websites to help you compare prices, vehicles and more, it’s almost foolish to overpay for an automobile. When you’re buying a new car, check out all of the resources the Internet has to offer. Do some initial research to get a good grasp of the cost of the vehicle you’re looking to purchase. It can also be helpful to bring your smartphone to negotiations with you. It can be a powerful bargaining tool to bring up what other dealerships are offering as promotions. Additionally, it allows you to easily view how much a particular automobile is selling for at other local dealerships.

Stick with your budget. When you’re buying a new car, the salesperson may want to deter your attention to the monthly payment rather than the overall cost of the vehicle. However, that can lead to overpaying. Both figures are important for you to be aware of, but it’s difficult for a car buyer to work backwards when only knowing the monthly payment of an automobile. If a car seller asks you what your monthly budget is, do your best to avoid that question initially and tell the salesperson you can discuss financing further once the car’s final price has been decided. Stick with both your monthly budget and what you planned to spend on the automobile.

Visit the dealership at nonpeak hours. When a salesperson is busy, they’re less likely to have a patient negotiations process with you. Saturdays and evenings they are open late tend to be the most busy times for car dealerships. When you’re looking for a car, try to do it during weekdays when dealerships see a lot less foot traffic.

Eat before you go to the dealership. It may seem silly, but we all think better with a full stomach. When buying a new car, you may be in the looking for a cardealership for a few hours and that can add stress to the whole process. Eating ahead of time can better prepare you to think clearly and nab the best deal.

View it as a business deal. When looking for a car, some buyers can get stressed and see negotiations simply as a necessary evil. And while it very well may be a hassle, it can be a very rewarding experience if done properly. It’s important to have a positive attitude, remain calm and inform the car salesperson that you are educated on the going price for this particular vehicle. Car dealerships fully anticipate that you will try to nab a bargain, so don’t think you’re inconveniencing them or being rude when you try to get a lower price. Salespeople are often empathetic and want to help you as much as possible while still making a profit on the deal.

Are you looking for a new car? Our comparison tool can help you determine which vehicle is the best match for your lifestyle. Check it out and compare an array of vehicles within each segment.