Get information on the pricing!
Finding out the invoice price (what the dealer paid for the vehicle)
and the sticker price (what the dealer wants you to pay) will give you
an idea of how much wiggle room you’ll have when talking to a
Research a dealer’s website before you visit.
Find out whether they have the vehicle you want on the lot. You can
also get a great feel for the dealership itself by reviewing its
Looking to trade?
vehicle through the Kelly Blue Book calculator (or another online trade
appraisal guide) to get an idea of its value. When doing this, be
honest about the condition of your vehicle – this is your key to
getting a fair value for your trade-in.
Know your situation.
your bank or credit union and find out what they can do for you for
financing. Get a copy of your credit bureau and find out what your
score is. Having these financial aspects already on your mind is
helpful when you get ready to finance your vehicle.
Ask for recommendations.
friends, family and co-workers whether they were satisfied when they
bought their last vehicle. This can give you a key to which
dealerships are worth your time and which are not.
Find a dealership that you are comfortable with.
a walk through the service and parts departments of the dealership
you’re considering purchasing from, as well as the customer areas and
showroom. The actual purchase of the vehicle is a small segment of the
vehicle’s life – chances are that you’ll spend much more time in the
customer areas for service and parts!
Don’t be afraid to shop around.
of the most frustrating aspects of being a female car shopper is when a
salesperson spends more time addressing the male friend or family
member you brought with you. Similarly, if you are harassed or
demeaned by a salesperson, whether directly or not, don’t put up with
the behavior. You have the right to ask to speak to a manager and
request another salesperson. If this fails, or if this isn’t an
option, find another dealership!
Know what you want – and what you want to spend.
Each new vehicle on the market today comes with a dizzying array of add-ons.
Options and Packages
options are a great way to get exactly what you want on a vehicle, but
will sometimes add to the purchase price of the vehicle. Know what
features you really want, and don’t be afraid to decline on the ones
If you’re trading in
a vehicle, ask your salesperson (or the person performing the
appraisal) to do a walk-around with you. During this, they will point
out any issues they see with your trade (including rust, scratches,
spots in the paint, etc.) If you’re given a quote for your trade that
is vastly different from the value you found through Kelly Blue Book
(or another online appraisal guide), it will give you an opening to ask
how the figure was arrived at.
Don’t feel pressured to purchase on the spot.
if you finance your purchase through the dealer, they will offer
extended warranties, as well as add-on protection plans. Ask how long
you have to make a decision for these plans. Many of these plans can
be purchased through the dealer up to thirty days after you purchase
your vehicle. Take home the paperwork and consider whether this plan
will be worth it to you.
If you keep these tips in mind, your next car buying experience should be a breeze. Good luck!