New Car Shopping Guide


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Before you start shopping for a new car, determine your budget. Once you have decided how much money you are willing to spend, you are ready to start looking at automobiles. Don’t go to the dealership just yet. Consider the features you most want in your new vehicle. Look at cars on the internet and read some new car magazines. Keep a list of a few cars that interest you most.

Before you Visit the Dealership:

Obtain a copy of your credit report. Knowing your credit score will help you when it’s time to get the loan. Your credit score will affect the type of loan you can get and the interest payments you will pay. If your credit isn’t great, don’t worry. Unless you have had a recent bankruptcy, you are likely to get a loan. You just may end up paying a higher interest rate.

If your credit is decent, consider securing financing before you start shopping. Banks, credit unions and other loan sources all offer this service. Applying for your loan in advance gives you buying power and decreases the chance that they will play games with your payment. In addition, the best rates are not always available through the dealership. Having your financing before you visit the dealer helps you avoid some of the haggling.

Know the value of your trade in vehicle. Kelly Blue Book is available online and can give you a good idea about the range you can expect to get on your trade. On the website, you will be asked questions about the mileage and condition of the vehicle to help determine the value. Always trade your car when it is in decent running condition. That way you won’t feel like you must rush to buy a car. Rushing to buy because your car is about to die can result in you getting a bad deal on your new vehicle.

There are a few times during the year that are better for car shopping than others. Consider shopping during the Christmas holidays. Few people buy a vehicle at this time of the year. As a result, the dealerships are nearly empty. Since some dealers are trying to break their end of the year sales records, you may get a good deal. Another good time is the late summer or early fall. Dealers are making room for the next year’s model and often are motivated to get rid of this year’s left over models.

If you have your heart set on a particular model, color or features, call the dealership before you visit. Be sure the dealer has the model you want. Sometimes a dealer will offer to get the one you want from another dealer. Don’t do this. You may end up paying additional costs for towing. In some cases, when the vehicle arrives, it may not be exactly what you want. To avoid these issues, deal directly with the dealer that has the car on the lot.

Tips for Dealing with the Dealer:

Visiting a dealership and negotiating with the salesman is a situation that most people find unpleasant and stressful. Being prepared will help you get the most for your money and be satisfied with your experience.

Start by paying attention to your appearance. Shower and dress casually, but in nice clothing. You will be treated better than the person who shows up in torn jeans and an old T shirt. Bring a loan calculator with you and print outs of prices from the internet and ads from other dealerships. If they know you have been doing your research, they are more likely to treat you with respect.

Know what the dealer is paying for the car. You can find information on dealer’s cost, rebates and incentives by visiting new car buying websites online. Take some time to research the vehicle you are interested in purchasing. The more you know, the better prepared you will be to negotiate. Even some so called “no haggle” dealerships will negotiate with you. If not, leave and visit another dealer.

Don’t buy based only on the monthly payments. You may end up paying more. Concentrate on the cost of the vehicle rather than the monthly payment. Check the price to be sure all rebates are included. Some dealers will offer a discount but will fail to mention that rebates are included in the cost. This is not really a deal.

You will sometimes be given a choice between a rebate and a lower interest rate. The better choice depends on the price and term of the loan. This is where your loan calculator will come into play. Do the math and compare the monthly payments with each option to determine which is best for you.

With a little research and preparation, you can find the vehicle you want at a price you can live with. Once you have purchased your car, be sure to keep up regular maintenance, both on the mechanical components and the exterior finish. Many people overlook the headlights when caring for their vehicles. Look into a product called New Lite Headlight Cleaner and Restorer. Cloudy headlights look bad and are a safety risk, as you won’t be as easily seen by other drivers. New Lite will return the cloudy headlights to like new condition. Learn more about this product and order at

David Maillie is a chemist with over 12 years experience in biochemical research and clynical analysis. He is an alumni of Cornell University and specializes in biochemical synthesis for public, private, and governmental interests. He holds numerous patents including his recently awarded patent for headlight cleaner and restorer. He can be reached at M. D. Wholesale:


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