How to Bargain With an Auto Dealer

You’ve made the decision to buy a new or used car, awesome! What’s next? You’ll need to find a car that fits your needs and budget. Often times at dealerships, looks can be deceiving. The sticker says one amount, but auto dealers may have a different price in mind. Just because the window has a figure on it, doesn’t mean that’s what you should pay. Here’s some things to keep in mind when you’re heading out to car shop.

Do your research. It’s the most important step when making such a large investment. You’ll want to research the safety and fuel efficiency ratings. Has the vehicle won any awards or had a recall? Will this car require a lot of maintenance? What is included in the manufacturer’s warranty? Already have a make and model in mind? Find out what was the best year for that make and, if you’re buying used, make a list of things to check on the vehicle.

After you do your own research, if you still aren’t comfortable with so much information, bring a knowledgeable friend or family member. Bringing a friend can provide necessary support and expertise. Knowledge is power and, in this case, a coupon on a big ticket item.

Go in with a budget. Always know just how much you’re willing to part with and stick to your guns. You’re the customer, so they should have to work for your money, not the other way around. If the auto dealer can’t reach your budget, then take a step back and give yourself some time to think it over. A car is a commitment and you need to be certain you’re ready and getting the best possible deal while getting the car that’s the best fit.

For used cars, check a price comparison site to see what is the fair market price. Keep that information with you. The auto dealer will work with you because you’re both aiming at a common goal: both of you want to see you drive away in a new automobile.

Another thing to keep in mind is what features come with the car. Features can cause a significant difference in price, but what features are important to you? If you want to, it may be helpful to carry along your personal notes. It’s always better to have the information on hand than to forget and lose money that could be saved.

Know the best days to buy a car. Sometimes it’s hard to wait, especially when our jobs may take us far from home, but do some searching to decipher the best sales. You might be able to get more for your clunker by trading it in at a different time of year. Buying a car when it’s fresh off the line is tempting, but waiting can be worth the savings.