Who among us hasn’t felt that burning desire to buy a new vehicle? Whether we’re contemplating the purchase of our first car or motorbike, because our existing vehicle is beginning to give us problems, or we simply yearn for something new, millions of people every year end up buying a new (or new to them) vehicle. The sad part is that many if not most of them pay more than they have to. Sometimes, significantly more. If you are one of those people, we’ve got a few tips that could save you a lot of money. If nothing else, the money you save can be spent on petrol, so you can actually drive that newfound object of delight.
Research the market to find what’s available, and at what cost.
You can find the price of vehicles you are considering, as well as the market value of your trade-in online. Check consumer advocate sites and car valuation sites to get an idea as to what your new vehicle should cost, and how much you can get for your trade-in. Don’t rely on the adverts, as they will often quote ridiculously low prices, knowing that once they’ve gotten you in the store, selling you a car will be much easier, even if they have to tell you – with great regret, of course – that all the vehicles at the advertised price have already been sold.
Shop ‘til you drop (and don’t take your checquebook)!
It is easy to get so excited about buying your car or motorbike that you snatch up the first pretty one you see, or fall so madly in love with a color or feature that you figure your shopping is complete. Car salespeople count on and play to that excitement. They know that once the “fever” hits a customer, the actual pounds and pence don’t mean quite as much. The savvy shopper, therefore, will remain firm in the commitment not to buy on the first time out. Instead, they will visit several different dealers and compare what is available, the best price they can get, and what financing terms are offered to them. Take notes everywhere you go, avoid the pressure to purchase immediately, and compare the notes when you’re back in your flat.
Haggle on one and only one thing at a time.
When you’ve decided on a specific car offered by a specific seller, stay focused and don’t let them distract you. Car salespeople will often ask questions such as, “How much were you intending to spend?. What kind of monthly payments can you handle?” or “How much were you expecting to get from your trade-in?” Do not answer any of these questions! Push the seller – repeatedly, if necessary – for his best price on the chosen vehicle, and start from there as a fixed point. Then, you can discuss how much you’ll be allowed for your trade-in. When you’ve locked in both of these figures, then and only then should you begin negotiating such things as the down payment and monthly payment amounts. The salesperson will likely try to go back and renegotiate the sales price and trade-in allowance, but remain firm, and let him know you’ll have none of it. If he continues to try to sway the conversation, let him know that you’ll shop elsewhere. His job, after all, is to make as much profit on the car as possible. Not to be your friend, though he will likely try his best to come across as one.
In short, make certain to do the buying on your terms, rather than on the salesperson’s. And your terms should fall within the boundaries of what vehicle you can afford, what down payment you can handle without having to take out a payday loan, and what monthly payments you can make and still afford luxuries such as shelter, food, and the occasional extra thankful of petrol so you can do more with your purchase than simply staring at t in the street.