By Daniel Goodwin
Are you in the market to upgrade your wheels? How do you know the salesperson won’t take you for a ride? Not all car sales people are shady. However, they do have sales quotas to meet every month. Selling you a car is in the best interest of their paycheck. Be careful and follow-up these tips when buying your next car.
It is now easier than ever to find out all the information you need before you even step foot inside a dealership. There are many websites that can help you decide which car is best for you. Most sites will let you know about manufacturer incentives, safety performance records and what others paid for your exact car. Edmunds.com, Motor Trend and Car and Driver are some of the most popular sites.
Have an idea of the make and models you would like to buy. Identify which bells and whistles you need. A GPS might be a deal breaker while heated rear seats would be a waste of money. Know the highest price you want to pay for your car. Plan to go to the dealership towards the end of the month. If the dealership has not met their quota they may give you a better deal.
3. Know your current finances
Know your credit score. Free sites such as creditkarma.com and annualcreditreport.com will let you check your credit for free. Fix any errors and pay off any debt you can prior to your car. How much money will you be putting down? Will you be trading in your current vehicle? How much will you get for your trade-in? The more money you put down the less you will pay in interest.
4. Shop around
Know the best interest rate available to you before you go to the dealership. When talking about financing ask the dealer to match your best rate. Be sure to ask the banks what their best rate is prior to letting anyone run your credit report. It might not be worth letting the bank ding your credit report for a mediocre rate.
Everything is Negotiable. Trading in your car? Negotiate a better price on your trade. Ask for the price you want to pay for the car first, you never know the answer could be yes. Always talk in terms of final price not the monthly payment amount.
If being a die-hard Negotiator is not in your blood, there are many car buying services out there that offer the haggle-free experience. TrueCar, Texas Auto Direct and CarMax are a few who come to mind. Using these tips can help save you money when financing your next car. One last tip would be patience. DO NOT let anyone convince you that you must do it today or else. There are lots of cars out there and don’t be in a big rush to close a deal today. You have an expanded capacity to make the best decision if you are methodical and prudent with your search.