How to Get a Steal on New Car Deals
If you’re shopping for a new car this spring or summer, you don’t have to pay sticker price. In fact, you shouldn’t pay sticker price…ever! That’s my policy. This article will give you the tools you need to get the best price on your new vehicle. I want you to score such a great deal the dealer feels like he’s been robbed!
Know exactly what you need. That’s the first step to getting the best possible new car deals. This step also includes knowing what your budget is. Spend some time planning what you can afford. Many websites offer free car payment calculators to help you determine what your monthly payment will be. In addition, spend some time researching to figure out what the best options are in your price range and what features you might want.
Be realistic. Remember, there’s almost always a difference between what you want and what you need. In addition, while the tools in this article can get you a good deal they can’t work a miracle. You aren’t going to walk away with a brand new Corvette for $12,000.
Put a dollar value on the car. Once you’ve pinned down the exact car you want (including all the extra features), figure out exactly what that car is worth. Use reputable (and free!) services like Kelley Blue Book to find the vehicle’s worth and what you should expect to pay. How else will you know if you’re getting a the best new car deals?
Value your trade-in. If you have a car you’ll be trading in, find out what it’s worth before visiting a dealer. Again, you can use things like Kelley Blue Book to help you. One site that’s really great is Auto Trader. The site will value your trade-in and many dealers will honor (or beat) the price.
Start comparison shopping. Don’t start off by going to different dealers – that’s going to be a waste of your time and gas. Call multiple dealers in your area and get a quote. See who offers the most competitive deal. Let dealers know that you’re comparison shopping and that Dealer A offered a price $2,000 lower than Dealer B.
Search for incentives. Once you’ve begun narrowing your search down to a few dealers, do a little research to see what incentives are being offered. For instance, many dealers offer “new grad” discounts for individuals who graduated college in the last 2 years!
Be patient. Often times, if a dealer’s price isn’t matching up with what you want to pay (assuming you’re being realistic), if you only wait a few days the dealer will call back with a lower price. Leave your name, number, and desired price point with a dealer and wait a few days to a week. You’ll probably get a call back with a better deal.
Hold back information. Unless the dealer specifically asks, don’t mention that you’re a new college grad, have a trade-in, or qualify for any other incentive until after you’ve settled on a price. Once you’ve gotten the best rate, say, “oh, by the way, I also have a trade-in. I think I forgot to mention that”.
Know when the time is right. Believe it or not, there is an ideal time to buy a car. For example, according to a Consumer Reports article, many people score the best new car deals at the end of the month (in the very last days of the month). This is because most dealerships have sales quotas so the salespeople are working really hard to meet their quotas at the end of the month. Check out the Consumer Reports article for more tips on when to go car shopping: http://news.consumerreports.org/cars/2007/08/car-buying.html.
Walk away if the deal is not right. Be prepared to simply walk away from a car. If you can’t obtain the (realistic) price you want then it’s time to move on. There will always be another deal.
For more great advice how to save money when buying a car, watch the video above for the top 5 car buying mistakes.