Car Shopping: The Games Dealers Play

How to stay on top of your game when car shopping.

So it’s time to buy a new or used car. You’re probably feeling a mix of emotions ranging from excitement to irritation. Let’s face it, car shopping can be an overwhelming ordeal and can be down right aggravating if you’re not prepared when you walk into the car dealership. We’ve got some tips that will keep you on top of your car shopping game.

Finance Elsewhere

First things first, when you walk into the car dealership for your car shopping needs, do so as a cash buyer. Unless you actually have cash to pay for the car, that means financing your car purchase else where. If you finance at the car dealership, you’re just giving the dealership an opportunity to make more money off of you, which means you’re spending more money than you have to. Car dealerships are notorious for telling people their credit is worse than it really is so they can charge them a higher interest rate. When you go car shopping don’t give the dealership a chance to play this game with you. Walk in the door with your financing pre-arranged.

Avoid the Trade-In Numbers Game

When you go car shopping, you’ll probably notice that one of the first things the car salesman is going to ask you is whether or not you have a car to trade in. Trust me, they’re not asking out of pure curiosity. When a car salesman asks you whether or not you have a trade in, what they’re really doing is seeing how much room they have to play with the numbers when quoting you a price on the car you’re interested in. Either sell your car yourself and use the cash towards your car purchase or tell the salesman you’re not sure whether or not you’re going to be trading in your car until the very last moment.

Be Ready To Walk

One of the most important things to remember is not to get caught up in the moment. If the dealership you’re at isn’t giving you the price you want, be ready to walk out and head to another car dealer. Remember, there’s more than one fish in the sea, and if one establishment isn’t willing to give you the deal you require, someone else may. If a dealership knows you’re serious about car shopping and that you’ll take your business elsewhere, they may be willing to come down more in price.

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