Dealing with Car Dealers

  1. The profit margin for a dealer is usually between 10% and 20%. This is the difference between the price they paid for the car, and the price they want you to pay for it..
  2. If the vehicle on the lot does not have everything you are looking for consider ordering the vehicle to your specifications. This can take more time, however, you'll get what you really want, rather than what the dealer happened to have on the lot when you stopped by.
  3. You can use their lack of the features you want to your advantage. If they think you will leave to find the options you want elsewhere, they might offer a similar vehicle for less if it is close to what you want. Therefore, when going to the dealership think about what options would be acceptable, and if it is offered you can take advantage of the proposal and save some money.
  4. Being emotional about your purchase can impact the price. If you allow a dealer to make you too interested in a vehicle; if you let them know that you are interested in a specific car or that you haven't done your homework, you will very often pay more than you should because you are giving the salesperson an advantage.
  5. Never be afraid to just leave. Dealerships are engineered to keep you in the showroom. Consider other methods of gathering information and prices so that you do not have to do it in the dealership. When comparison price shopping get them to all use that same type of figure, e.g., invoice price. Then you can fairly compare the prices for the vehicle you want to purchase.
  6. Don't negotiate for the payment, but rather for the price of the car.
  7. Know what you need to pay for, and what are just extras. Be ready to pay taxes, registration, license and destination charges, but do not pay promotion, delivery, handling, floor or sales charges.
  8. Be prepared to turn down fancy extras like rust proofing and pin stripping—they are expensive and unnecessary.

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