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Don't Get Bullied at the Dealership

By Jeff Youngs, June 03, 2013
How to get a great deal on a new vehicle

To get a great deal on a new vehicle--and to avoid becoming a victim of the "let me check with my manager" approach at the dealership--car buyers need to take these 5 steps:

1) Know Exactly What You Want
Before you head to the dealership to buy a new car, you should know exactly what you want. Start by deciding what type of vehicle is best for you, and then conduct your research to determine which models, trim levels, and options are most appealing to you.

2) Know Exactly What You Should Pay
Once you've decided on a make, model, and trim level, it is time to research car prices. Consult at least three sources that can provide the invoice price, average transaction prices, and available rebates for your region. Average this data, and you will have your target transaction price.

3) Pre-Arrange Your Financing
If you are planning to finance the vehicle, shop for a loan online and solicit rates and terms from multiple lenders. Then, complete the credit application so that your financing is in place. Ask the dealership to beat your best rate and terms.

4) Avoid Trading In Your Old Car
Trading in your old car is easy, and saves you plenty of work. But it also gives the dealership a lever to pull in order to maximize profit from your deal. If getting the best deal is of paramount importance, sell your old car on your own.

5) Negotiate with Multiple Dealers
It is easy to ask multiple dealerships selling the same brand to compete for your business. Negotiate via telephone or email, or submit a multi-dealer lead on the Internet. Once you've settled on a deal, go to the dealership to complete the transaction. If the dealership refuses to honor the negotiated price, walk away and do not return.

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