Many people are surprised that a women would write an article about making a car purchase from a car dealership. My article is just to help you to be more prepared and to feel more comfortable making your car purchase, whether new or used. The way I learned is from experience, not very good experiences. I purchased a previously owned vehicle almost 18 years ago from a dealership and I was not happy with my selection, the price, or the vehicle. I spent 40 hours at the dealership revising my purchase, changing vehicles, and becoming more educated. The dealership offered me a job. I accepted so I could really have the lessons I needed to last a lifetime and to share what I learned with others.
Any business is a business and they usually are in business to make money, the more the merrier. You can't blame them for that because it's business. You can arm yourself with the understanding about how they are making profits and then you are in the control seat deciding the items you are willing or not willing to purchase. Information beats ignorance. Ignorance is no longer bliss, it's expensive.
Every single part of your car purchase involves a profit center for most dealerships. What does that mean? The dealership would like to make money on the vehicle they sell you, and probably will or they probably won't do the deal. They want to make money on the vehicle you are trading in. Any additional profits are welcomed for financing, warranties, insurance, safety features like alarms, special extras to go on the vehicle from upgraded sound to tires to safety features. Your credit usually looks even better at your own bank or credit union than in the finance department.
Dealerships expect most customers to question price, trade-in, down payments, or monthly payments. Most customers won't give the dealership a hard time and many people won't negotiate too hard on every single aspect of the purchase.
How can consumers be more prepared before entering a dealership to deal with professional sales people who are prepared to hang in with you, usually as long as it takes. Most of the professional car dealers I have ever met have lots of stamina or they don't last. Remember in many locations around the country they work what's known as “bell -to-bell" from early morning until late at night. Many car salespeople work 60-80 hours a week to sell vehicles. It's a tough business and they are prepared for you with every possible skill.
If you are going to trade in a vehicle, know what you have. If you have no idea what the value is of your current car, how are you going to use it to your best advantage in a trade-in. If you don't know, you'll probably wind up with less money than you might have been able to get.
Have all the documents you need for your existing vehicle.
Be prepared to spend a considerable amount of time at the dealership from selecting the car you want, to trading yours in, to handling financing, and learning about your vehicle before you take it home. Many people will not realize the time factor needed and they will come into a dealership hungry. Be prepared and have food before you get to the dealership and take a good snack with you so that you don't pay the price for your blood sugar dropping and you just being tired and making a bad deal to get out of there.
If you want the process to go faster, kids are a great accessory. Bring them with you. If you don't feel equipped to make these decisions alone, get professional help from places like your favorite bank or credit union. about all the financial ramifications of your selections. It's better to be prepared than “pissed off. “
Lori Wilk, MBA, is a Las Vegas Strip Performer, not a stripper. She makes daily humourous vacation ownership presentations on the Las Vegas Strip. She's is an author of business and self-help books and host of the internet talk show “Successipes. " We have new features coming to http://www.briefusa.com and new articles at http://www.sexafterprostatecancer.com
c.2008 Lori Wilk.
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