Car shopping – the disenchanting experience that all car buyers have gone through. Why isn’t the experience of buying a brand new vehicle as appealing as shopping for a new TV or wardrobe? Is it because we hate cars? Or do we hate the dealers?
According to a survey conducted by Edmunds, 46 per cent of Americans in a sample of 1,000 would rather scrub the porcelain throne than go car shopping. In the same survey, 30 per cent of respondents would attend a wedding alone and 32 per cent would sit in the middle seat of an airplane. Finally, only 20 per cent of people would actually prefer going to the showroom.
Apparently, the reason for all the disdainful sentiment is because of one critical aspect of car buying – haggling. People hate it. To some, the whole process is so classless, uncomfortable and complicated that it seems almost pointless.
But, is car buying really as agonizing as the survey makes it sound? Surely there must be some life hacks that can help us out, right?
Know exactly what vehicle you want
Quality negotiators know exactly what they want before they even enter a dealership. If you’re not sure what vehicle you want to buy, you might get swayed by the dealer to get something costlier than you really need.
Begin by doing some research. There are plenty of resources online that can guide you. Since there are tons of makes and models out in the car market to fit every personality on the road, you want to keep on top of them all. You also want to find the perfect fit for your lifestyle
Automaker websites and third-party review sites are all just a search away. Use the process of elimination to make your final selection. And ask yourself a lot of questions (which you should be able to answer). Do you want a nice family sedan? Do you want to take an SUV on a camping trip? Or would a luxury vehicle suit your fancy? It doesn’t matter what you decide on, the important thing is that you’re the one who decides.
Know exactly how much you want to pay
You are less likely to pay more if you set a limit and stay within it. Determine a reasonable budget for yourself and be certain that it makes fiscal sense. If you don’t know the range you are working with, you might spend more money than you should.
Familiarize yourself with the different prices and incentives associated with car buying. Know the dealer’s invoice price, the MSRP and all the other fees before you start negotiating. Your knowledge will be your haggling armour, and the more you know, the thicker it will get.
For more information, check out Unhaggle’s free price report, which includes the MSRP and other pricing quirks. You can also look up local estimations for the average selling price for the vehicle of your choice.
Know how you want to pay
Another factor that a lot of car buyers neglect upon entering a dealership is their payment method.
Is it smarter for you to lease at the moment or would you rather finance and own your new vehicle long-term? This is the tough question you’ll have to answer yourself, but sometimes automotive manufacturers will help you with that decision. We explain the advantages of both right here.
Keep your eye open for promotions and incentives (and finance/lease rates). These opportunities tend to come up at the beginning of each month. Unhaggle also offers public and hidden incentives, as well as the latest rates available, which you can find in the aforementioned price report.
And if you’re looking for tips on how to become a more confident haggler, check out this article on how to become better at everything.