The time to buy a car: advice for you

August 20, 2014

The time has come to buy a new car and you want to make sure you get the best available price and that no one tricks you. To achieve this, there are a couple of practices you should know to keep the power in your hands and control of the negotiations. Here are some tips to help you with these objectives:

  1. Decide before getting to the showroom – Clearly define what you need to obtain from your vehicle and the things you are willing to negotiate because they are not indispensable. Having multiple options of models with the features you are looking for will give you flexibility to negotiate further.
  2. Get informed – Verify prices and offers available in the Internet and other establishments. Analyze the difference between the basic models and the others to see if the extra features are really worth the additional cost.
  3. Be casual but focused – It is important that the salesman knows he’s dealing with a person who knows what he/she wants. It will make it harder for him to trick you or try to sell you a car with features that you don’t need. Don’t show too much interest in a particular car, doing so gives him power over the negotiation.
  4. Stay within your budget – Remember that after the initial cost you will have to pay insurance, taxes, gas, repairs and replacement parts. Having enough to make the monthly payment but needing a loan every time you have to change a tire is not staying within budget.
  5. Being impulsive takes away your power – Buying a car because you like the color or because you will look great in a convertible could give you short term satisfaction but long term problems. Don’t lose sight of the quality, the warranties, the safety features and the real price to pay for impulsive decisions. Verify your options and take them home for at least 24 hours. If you still love the terms the next day, go buy your car.
  6. Look for a pre-approval – Regardless of your preferred financial institution, ask for pre-approval for the total cost of your car. Take the document with you to the negotiation so you can use it to compare rates and prices. After negotiating the price of your car, show the document to the salesman and ask him if he can make a better one.
  7. Negotiate trade ins before the price of the car – Try to get the best price on your trade in beforehand. To leave it for the end increases the chances of just wanting to get rid of it and giving away your money. In cases when you are trading cars with pending balances, do not start negotiating on your new car before the dealer accepts to pay for the pending balance in writing.
  8. Don’t feel an obligation to buy – Just because someone showed you around and treated you well; don’t feel obligated to buy from him. What you are looking for is the best possible deal and he might not be in a position to give it to you. You can always return with the offer you found to see if he could improve it and thank him for his service.

There are no reasons why, if you follow this advice, you can’t get the car you desire at the price you deserve.

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