Your car breaks down or you are in an accident. You need a new car.!

You procrastinate as long as possible because of the hassle you are going to face entering a car dealership. The pressure of negotiating and making sure your are getting a fair price is so daunting. But you need a new car!

I like the process of searching for a new car. You do all the research, check prices, watch dealer inventory and start to imagine yourself zipping down the road in your new car. You even start to think about names for your new car because everyone knows your car has to have a name.

In college, I had a Saturn I called the “S Ride.” I just can’t stand the idea of going into a car dealership and negotiating the best price for myself. The thought of sitting in a chair for hours while the salesperson goes to “ask” their manager about my offer price, and feeling pressured into paying the price the dealership is asking sounds like the worst possible way to spend an afternoon. I am going to share with you the process I have used to purchase my last few cars that has made a much better experience for myself. I have been able to do it all online from the comfort and convenience of my house.

Prior to getting ready to start negotiating, you should have already test driven the car you want to buy and picked out the options you would like so you know exactly what you are looking for. Reputable dealerships have all of their cars for sale listed on their websites with the MSRP. There is usually a button you can click on to get the internet price. In order to do that, you have to enter your email address and name so they can contact you. I would suggest contacting several dealerships for the same model of car so you can shop around to make sure you are getting the best price possible.

All the dealerships should have a sales person respond to you with a price that is lower than the MSRP that is listed on the website. Yay, you are already making progress! After you have collected the lower MSRP from all of the dealerships, spend time comparing them, see who is lowest and what options you are getting on the car compared to the others. You can then go back to the all dealerships and ask them to come down more, ask for an out the door price instead of just the cost of the car so there are no surprises when you go in to purchase.

Again, I did this through email so there was no pressure and you can check emails and respond at your leisure. If all respond with a lower price, I would do a second round asking them to come down even more. You may have the salesperson tell you that is the lowest they can go down and that would end that negotiation. When you are down to the couple lowest offers, compare what features each car has and make a decision on which car you want to buy. If the one you want is not the absolute lowest, ask that dealership to match the lowest price. Once you have the best deal on the car you want, you are ready to buy! I then set up an appointment to go in and purchase my new car. Make sure you bring the email that lists the agreed on price.

Buying a car using this process eliminates the need for a face to face negotiation and ensures there are no surprises at the dealership making for a quicker and less stressful transaction.

This is just one tactic that can be used to save you money and help you stay in budget when purchasing a new car, there are many ways to do this. Please share some tips below that you have used to purchase a new car.

You May Also Like

Off to College? Sort Out Your Finances, Not Just Your Dorm August is an exciting time for freshmen students. From choosing classes to deciding what fraternity or sorority to join to decking out dorm rooms, th...
2020 Victory Garden Tips With people staying home more during the coronavirus pandemic, they are taking up hobbies. Many people have started to plant gardens reminiscent of t...
Money Management Tips – Finding the Hidden Cost of Purchases Think that rock-bottom, factory-closeout price is a great deal? Think again. If you learned to speak Minnesotan from Garrison Keillor on his iconic...

16 comments on “Tips on How to Buy a Car and Save Money

  • VW gave me an interest free loan for the life of the loan, which made it very easy. I would recommend always trying to find an interest free loan, if possible.

    • You should always get pre-approved for a car loan at your bank or credit union and then leverage that to negotiate the price on writing a price for the car. That completely removes the other variables like trade-in amount and loan interest. No/Low interest is typically accomplished by adding more to the car price or giving you less on your trade-in. They just move the money around. Having multiple dealers competing for your purchase and the ability to negotiate a ‘cash-price’ is a the tactic I always use.

  • I like your method for purchasing a new car. I had already used the e-mail to make an appointment and test drive the vehicle. Waiting for the dealer to find the vehicle I want.

  • But beware of a dealer who shows you the “Invoice” price! That is not the lowest either. Dealers receive a further reduction BELOW the invoice price when at the end of the month the dealership receives a further reduction. Now, the salesman will say that he doesn’t get that reduction but that it goes to the manager. My response is that I deal with car dealership and I don’t care what goes on within the dealership!!!! It works!

  • My friend currently doesn’t have a car of his own, so I think that he’d be interested in buying one soon. It was helpful when you mentioned that he should test drive a car, as it will help him see if he likes the way it handles the road. Thanks for all the great tips on buying a new car.

  • I do like that the article reminds readers that they already should have test driven the car before they start negotiating. After all, you shouldn’t just test drive used cars, you’ll want to test drive the new ones too. That way you can make sure you actually enjoy driving the car before you try to buy it.

  • I like your tip about making sure that you have already test-driven the car that you are interested in, so that you know exactly what type of car you want to buy. My sister is looking for a new car, but she doesn’t want to have to deal with having to go into a dealership. I will forward this article to her, and maybe that will help her make her decision and give her ideas about how to prepare for buying a car.

    • Hi Sandra, thanks for sharing our tips with your sister. It understand her not wanting to go into a dealership, it can be intimidating. If she is armed with knowledge and research, they will not be able to push her around though! Please let us know how she did.

  • Actually, the most important tip for “Tips on How to Buy a Car and Save Money” is NEVER buy a new car. Look for a car that has not been wrecked, is 18 to 24 months old, and has under 25K miles on it. Spend a good deal of time looking at many cars. Buy from a reputable new or used car dealer (check with BBB). Do you best to pay cash for the car to avoid car payments. If you can’t pay cash, pay as much down as you can afford.

    • I agree, that buying a late model used car is a good way to go. I’ve purchased 3 new cars new and 6 used. The used cars purchased all had a little scratch or ding that wasn’t mine and all the new cars we drove for over 10 years. There is more satisfaction in driving a new car (even after it gets older) but there is more value in buying used. My strategy – I buy my wife new cars and keep them longer while I buy myself used.

  • Thank you for stating that prior to getting ready to start negotiating, you should have already test-driven the car you want to buy. I want to buy my first car but have no idea how to go about it, and don’t know anything about the process. I will definitely utilize all of your great tips and information when buying my first car.

  • It was really helpful when you explained that it is important to test drive a vehicle before you start negotiating a price. My wife’s car recently broke down on her a couple of weeks ago, and we are wanting to get her a used vehicle from a dealership so that I don’t have to drive her to school anymore. We’ll be sure to test drive the ones we are looking at before making a decision.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *