It’s easy to see why so many of us dread car shopping. Not only are new vehicles extremely pricey, automotive salespeople can sometimes come on a bit strong. Since a car is the most expensive possession many people own, it’s only natural to become anxious and frustrated when it comes time to replace your vehicle. While it’s true that a good car doesn’t come cheap, this doesn’t mean that purchasing a vehicle should be a financially ruinous experience. Budget-conscious car shoppers looking for convenient ways to save money on their next auto purchase should put the following pointers to good use.
Opt for a Pre-Owned Vehicle
When car shopping, the temptation to buy brand-new can be overwhelming. While wanting to have the latest thing is basic human nature, you can save a considerable amount of money by going with a vehicle that’s a few years old. Being open to buying used will expand your purchase options exponentially and put a much smaller dent in your finances.
Brush Up on Your Negotiating Skills
Haggling with salespeople is among the primary reasons people dread car shopping. If you’re a natural-born haggler or have experience making deals, negotiating the price of a car may not represent a significant challenge for you. However, for those of us with no aptitude for negotiation, this can be a highly uncomfortable experience.
Fortunately, even if your haggling skills leave much to be desired, there are still ways for you to negotiate a better deal. For starters, if you have a specific car in mind, educate yourself on its sticker price, what other dealerships are charging for it and any available financing options. Furthermore, many dealerships will give better deals to people who pay for vehicles in full instead of opting for financing plans. Lastly, some salespeople tend to be more open to negotiation over the phone than in-person. Just make sure to be as respectful and polite as possible when interacting with salespeople. If you come off as condescending or combative, they’re less likely to give you what you want.
Do Business with the Right Dealership
For better or worse, car dealerships have a reputation for taking advantage of customers. In popular media, automotive salespeople are often portrayed as comically conniving smooth-talkers who will say anything they believe will help them land a sale. Of course, as anyone who works in the industry can attest, this portrayal does not apply to all salespeople or dealership managers. In fact, thanks to the growing presence of consumer feedback platforms, it’s pretty easy to ascertain which local dealerships you’d have the best luck doing business with. So, if a dealership in your area has garnered a sizable number of glowing reviews from satisfied customers, it may be in your best interest to check them out. Bay Area residents on the hunt for a reliable auto dealership needn’t look any further than Putnam Cadillac.
In addition to seeking out dealerships that will give you a good deal, look for ones that stand by their merchandise. For example, some dealerships provide convenient limited warranties with their pre-owned vehicles. Having your purchase protected by one of these warranties helps ensure that you’re covered in the event that something goes wrong with the car within a specific time-frame. A vehicle is far from a small investment, and taking measures to protect such a large purchase is perfectly understandable.
Trade in Your Old Vehicle
Unless you have any need for your old vehicle, you’d be wise to trade it in towards the car you intend to purchase. To sweeten the deal, some dealerships will give you a respectable amount of trade-in credit if you agree to use it towards your new vehicle. In many cases, this alone will provide you with an impressive discount and help take some of the hassle out of the car-buying process.
You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who relishes shopping for a new car. As cool as it is to own a new vehicle, the purchasing process can be equal parts stressful and exhausting. However, unbeknownst to many consumers, saving money on vehicles isn’t nearly as daunting as it often seems. Anyone looking to score a dependable vehicle without breaking the bank can benefit from utilizing the previously discussed measures.