Saturday, July 20, 2024

How To Haggle With Car Dealers

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Trading In Your Used Car

How to Haggle for a Car: Beat the Car Dealers!

Trading in your old vehicle when buying a newer one can seem quite convenient since it avoids the effort of advertising and selling it privately. Unfortunately, thats not much of an advantage. Youll almost always make more money by selling your old car privately because that sale will be based on its actual market value rather than the wholesale value, which is what dealerships use to calculate how much theyll give you for it as a trade-in.

If you still want to go through a dealer, check out your cars approximate value through Redbook, Carsales or similar websites that offer online value calculators.

Dont Be Afraid Of Finance

If youre planning to buy your new car outright, it may be wise to initially conceal this from your car dealer. Its usually in a dealers interest to sell cars on finance, as there are often manufacturer-subsidised incentives that can make these packages quite attractive.

While being receptive to the idea of finance can pave the way to an improved offers, dont be completely dismissive of the dealers financial packages. In some cases it really is cheaper to use finance provided by the dealer than to borrow money from your bank. Our guide to car financing explains the options open to you.

Remember that until you sign for anything, you can walk away from the deal at any point. An equivocal Im not sure yet can often help negotiations until the contracts come out, how youre going to be paying for the car is your business, not the dealers.

After Negotiating Read The Paperwork

You have done the hard workresearched, haggled and agreed on a price. Now it is time to sign paperwork to complete the purchase. Remain vigilant before signing the paperwork and be sure not to skip the sales contracts fine print for any fees and hidden costs. The dealer may attempt to throw in extrasusually unnecessary add-onssuch as extended warranties, gap insurance and tire protection.

Given how much it costs to buy a car, the last thing you want to do is pay even more for add-ons, if you dont need them.

Dont be afraid to ask a lot of questions and for the dealership to remove any unwanted extras.

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When Talking To The Salesperson

  • Be friendly and polite, but avoid letting the salesperson know your top limit.
  • If youre a cash buyer, dont tell the salesperson this straight away. Dealers make bigger profits on finance deals, so let them bargain the cars price on this basis. You can then decline the finance deal later in the process.
  • Start off by stating an amount lower than what youre actually prepared to pay you can then gradually increase it if necessary.
  • When you make an offer, dont speak again until the salesperson replies.
  • Be as positive as possible about your aims. For example, dont say Can I have a discount? Instead, ask How much discount will you give me?
  • Some negotiators start by saying theyre not prepared to pay the price advertised, but remember they ARE there to do a deal!
  • If youre struggling to get a discount but you want the car, offer to close the deal there and then if you can both agree a price.
  • Dont be afraid to walk out if the dealer isnt prepared to negotiate or move much on the price.

When youve agreed a deal, its still possible to get out of your car finance arrangement.

Find out more about ending your car finance agreement early.

Generous Limited Warranty Support


As we mentioned, you could get a full refund for your car if you didnt like it up to 30 days or 1,500 miles after purchase. But lets say you intend on keeping it. If thats so, then CarMax has your back with its limited warranty program. For up to 90 days , this plan can provide some coverage for the more serious issues of key vehicle systems and components.

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Dont Assume Your New Car Will Be Perfect

Your car should be perfect when you collect it, but dont assume it will be. Before signing the handover paperwork, go around the bodywork with a fine-toothed comb, looking for any dings, scratches or paint mismatch between panels. Do the same when it comes to checking the spec is exactly what you ordered, then repeat the process with the interior. If you spot any issues, document both the problem, and how the dealer will remedy them, before taking delivery.

Now find out if you should lease or buy a new car and check out the latest deals on our sister site Buyacar…

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Buying a used car: your complete guide

If Youre Looking To Get A Better Deal On Car Its Good To Prepare Yourself With Some Negotiation Tactics

If youre ready to buy a new or used car, walking away from the sale knowing you got a good price is important. But you might be unsure how to successfully negotiate your car price. Thankfully, negotiating a vehicles price isnt too difficult as long as you have a good understanding of the process and how it works.

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Focusing On Monthly Payments Instead Of Bottom

You may have noticed that car repayment terms are getting longer and longer. Twenty years ago, you could hardly find a car with a four-year loan. Today, maximum terms are up to seven years.

There are two reasons for this: cars, like everything else, are costing more and stretching out payments makes the car loan seem more affordable.

Focus on the total cost of the vehicle, not the monthly installments. A lengthier loan may create smaller individual payments but means youll tend to fork out more in interest. Try to keep the term of the loan to three years if possible: youll save money in the long run.

Make Note Of Imperfections To Help In

How to Haggle for a Used Car, an undercover demonstration by Broadcaster Elisabeth Leamy

You might find it more difficult to negotiate the price of a used car online because you might want to see and test drive the actual car to make sure everything is as expected. When evaluating a car in person, make note of all imperfections that you could use to negotiate a lower price.

You dont have to point them out to the dealership or seller until youre ready to negotiate. Instead, write down a list or take pictures of issues so you can refer to them when youre ready.

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Dont Ask The Dealer For Recommendations

A common mistake many car buyers make is they let car salespeople make recommendations.

Objectively speaking, this is a terrible idea simply because your priorities and their priorities are completely different.

  • YOU want a great deal on a great car that fits your budget and your lifestyle.
  • THEY want to make you overpay for a car you dont need so they can get it off the lot.

For example, lets say you walk into a Subaru dealership. You know you want a Subaru, youre just not sure which one. So you explain to the salesperson that youre looking for something comfortable, with good ride quality and room for kids and a dog.

They recommend a Subaru Ascent, the companys new three-row SUV. They talk up the smooth transmission, compliant ride, and show you how the third row folds down. It checks the boxes, so you start signing the paperwork.

Big mistake.

If youd done your own independent research, youd know that the 2021 Subaru Ascent ranks #2 on Consumer Reports ignominious list of the 10 Least Reliable Cars.

So why didnt the salesperson warn you?

Simple. Their priorities and your priorities are different. The dealer is trying to move product, regardless of quality and customers who dont know better, who dont do their own research, are easy targets.

You should always be telling the dealer what you want never the other way around. And for help determining which cars you want, follow these three tips:

How To Negotiate Used Car Price

Buying a used car is a step-by-step process. It is worth taking a few minutes to review these steps and make sure your deal is a good one. The final step is negotiating the price although some may be embarrassed to even ask for a discount. But why should that be embarrassing?

You can’t compare buying a used car to buying, say, a piece of furniture. You may ask why you should bargain when buying a car if, in any other case, you just pay exactly what the label says. The reason is that it is more difficult to establish the real value of a second-hand car compared to a brand-new item. And speaking of cars, it’s even more difficult.

Cars of a certain model were sold in different showrooms and several versions, then they were used by different drivers on different roads, the cars could be driven different distances and finally, they were serviced in different salons, which could be both better and worse. As a result, the value of two identical models purchased from the same dealership will be vastly different after just a few years.

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When Youre Haggling Over The Price Of A New Car Here Are The Things You Should Say And The Traps To Avoid

Buying a new car in a showroom can be an intimidating task. Not only do you have to make sense of all the offers and payment methods, youve also got to hold your own against a dealer who, at the end of the day, wants you to pay as much as possible.

The average new car sold in Britain costs around £33,000, so any money you can save will go a long way to keeping your bank balance healthy. To help you look after your coffers, weve put together a list of tips and tricks to make sure you get the perfect car at the best possible price.

How To Negotiate For A Used Car

How to Negotiate a Car Deal the Right Way  Hayden Auto

Negotiating a lower price on a used car isnt as scary as it seems. Going in with a clear head and the research youve done is half of the battle. If you do your homework, plan for rejections and manage your expectations, the experience will be far smoother. Having a specific number in mind when going into a negotiation could hurt the entire process. Instead, go in with a price range that you’re looking to get and base this range off the research you’ve done. When you’re choosing the range, keep in mind that there are many things that can influence the price of a used car, so plan for those.

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Research What Incentives Are Available For The Car You Want

Automakers, like Honda, Toyota or Ford, might offer dealerships and consumers incentives to choose a particular car model. Know what these incentives are ahead of time to make sure youre getting them included in your final price.

And if youre planning on financing the car, check to see if there are any low-interest-rate offers available from automakers for the specific car model youre considering. These offers could save you more money in comparison to a loan from a bank. But make sure you have a backup plan lined up in case you arent approved for the promotional interest rate.

Price Shop With Multiple Dealers

Once youre ready to start negotiating the cars price, remember that new cars are a commodity. You may be able to find the same new car at your local dealership or at other dealerships within a few hours drive of your home.

Use this to your advantage by getting quotes from several dealers even those outside your immediate area. Then, use those quotes to get the dealerships to compete with each other with counteroffers to get the lowest price possible.

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Keep Calm For A Better Deal

Car sales staff are often genuinely very pleasant people, but bear in mind that enjoying a relaxed, convivial atmosphere can lead to you dropping your guard. These days, sales executives are increasingly well trained and the most effective ones can exploit a relaxed, cheerful customer to their advantage.

Never lose sight of your objective. You havent visited the car dealership today to make a new friend, although this can often happen as a happy fringe benefit. Your sole reason for sitting at the salespersons desk is to get the best deal possible while his job is to make as much profit for his company as he can.

If the first deal a salesperson offers you actually exceeds your expectations, try not to make this immediately obvious. Remember, youre about to spend thousands of pounds, so keeping a cool head is vital. Persistent negotiators can secure further discounts, so dont accept the first figure youre given.

Tips For Haggling At A Dealership According To Insiders

How To Negotiate With an “Old School” Car Dealer

Whether you’re looking for a new or used car, when you visit a dealership, you better be prepared to haggle. Most of us know the basicsdo your research, dont be afraid to walk awaybut negotiating can be a tricky business. We asked industry insiders to tell us what works best when haggling over the price of a car.


If youre trading in your old vehicle for a new one, youll typically get a better deal if you just sell it outright, says Anthony Curren, a manager at a New York car dealership. While most dealerships will low-ball the value of your trade-in, new dealerships are especially sneaky about it. New dealerships are notorious for this. Let’s say you come to my lot and want to get $1500 from your trade in. I will tell you it’s worth $300, for example. You go to a new dealership and tell them you want $1500. They give you $1500, but add $1200 somewhere on the back side. New dealerships have a lot more play in their numbers, and therefore can give you more perceived value, Curren says.

In other words, theyll give you what they want, but they sneak in the difference when they sell you the new vehiclemaybe theyll charge excessive dealer fees or an unnecessary warranty with an even bigger price tag. Before you resort to trading in your car, Curren suggests trying to sell it yourself first. Put your vehicle up on Craigslist for a few days before you come to buy the car, and if you don’t get any bites, trade it for what you can.

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The Real Value Of A Used Car

As you cannot determine the real value of a used car based on simple indicators, the market will do the job. Simply put, the car is worth as much as the seller can get for it. The seller states the price he would like to get, but you are more looking out for your interests than the sellers. Also, remember that professional dealers tend to negotiate the price of used cars with their clients, so they often offer a higher initial price because they expect you to try to lower it as well. That’s one reason why you should make some effort and try to pay less if you are buying a second-hand car – there’s no shame in such negotiations.

When Should You Tell A Dealer Youre Paying Cash

For this reason, most salesman will ask you upfront if you will be financing or paying cash. NEVER tell them youre paying cash! When asked, just respond by saying probably. If they keep hounding you, tell them youre interested in financing but that you want to agree on the price of the car first.

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Found The Perfect Car

Ready to hand over your hard-earned cash in exchange for a shiny new motor? Buying a car is an exciting time, but as with any big purchase, its best not to rush into anything. Take your time to find the right car for the right price.

Before you go any further, head over to the Car Guide website and run a Vehicle Check to find out:

  • If there is an outstanding car finance agreement attached to the vehicle
  • The vehicles mileage history and service history
  • Potential problems you may have with the car during the next 6 to 12 months
  • The likelihood of the car failing its next MOT
  • Whether a pre-purchase inspection is recommended

This information will be useful as part of the negotiation process.

Dealerships Are Still Important

Managing Car Dealers: How to Negotiate Like a Pro ...

Although the car-shopping process is making a move toward being completely online, we shouldnt expect dealerships to go extinct any time soon. Thanks to nationwide laws, manufacturers will continue to sell their products via dealership storefronts, however, its up to dealerships on how they want to price their inventory.

However, the no-haggle policies seem to work in general, especially considering retailers like Carmax have used this method for the past 15 years and continue to successfully do so. So it wouldnt be too surprising if more dealers move over to this new business model in the coming years.

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Know What You Can Afford

Part of the reason for doing your research first is to help establish your budget. If you intend to use cash, then the amount you have available will dictate your negotiating room. However, if you are going to use an auto loan, then you might have a larger budget, a broader range of car buying options and more room to negotiate.

Even if you plan to rely on an auto loan, you might need to bring a down payment to lower your closing costs or reduce the overall loan amount. Take the time to evaluate how much spare cash you feel comfortable putting down.

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