The following post originally appeared on our RoadLoans blog, The Open Road.
Recently a friend of mine asked, “How do you get the best deal when shopping for a vehicle?”
I replied that the buying process – negotiating the best car deal – can be a challenge. However, following are some simple things you can do to get the best deal.
First, get your financing upfront. You are in control at the dealership if you have your financing wrapped up. Why? You know your approval amount, rate, down payment and terms. There will be no surprises since you are not dependent on the dealership to find you financing.
Second, do your homework. Know what you would like to purchase by looking online. Find out the year, make, model and color, and know what price fits your budget.
Some great resources are KBB.com, Cars.com, and AutoTrader.com.
Third, if you have a trade-in, find out the value before going to the dealership. Always know what you can get for your trade-in so you don’t have to settle for the dealer’s offer. I would suggest taking your trade-in to CarMax to determine the value. The goal here is to provide you negotiating power. You will never take less than you should on your trade-in if you know what the market is allowing.
Once you are at the dealership you should:
Always talk price and not payment. You can always suggest the dealer lower the price of the vehicle. Don’t be afraid to ask since there typically is room for negotiation in the price.
Wait to mention your trade-in until after you have negotiated price. After you have negotiated the price down to your favor, then you can talk about maximizing your trade.
Check the price of add-on products before accepting the dealer’s price. Be sure to see what the price is for GAP and a Vehicle Service Contract with your lender before accepting the dealer’s price.
Be willing to walk out. The greatest negotiating tip I can give anyone is to be willing to walk out of the dealership if they are not working with you. The dealer wants to put a deal together, and if you are willing to walk away, they may be more willing to come down on the price, offer more for your trade-in and give you the customer service you deserve.
Where can you go get the resources for a great deal? I always tell my friends to visit www.RoadLoans.com.
RoadLoans will be able to provide you a quick approval, competitive rates and financing, and you will work directly with experienced representatives who will guide you to a dealership that wants your business.
RoadLoans will empower you and your buying experience by providing you the ability to negotiate the best deal. No need to waste time at the dealership asking about financing, wondering if you will be approved, worrying about your payment and hoping that you are making the right decision. You are now in control and have been given the freedom to focus on the best deal for you and your family.
Enjoy shopping and have fun as you negotiate the best deal!