General Question

round_pie's avatar

How to negotiate with car dealers?

Asked by round_pie (90points) January 15th, 2008
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

5 Answers

ccatron's avatar

if you have a Carmax nearby, I suggest you go there…you don’t have to negotiate. Their prices are usually lower than other dealerships and the price they give you is the lowest price they can give you. So, if you don’t like the price, you just leave or find a different car. plus, their vehicles are the best quality since they don’t sell cars that have major problems or have been in wrecks.

robhaya's avatar

Here’s my strategy:

1) Do your homework. Research the car you want to buy all configured, etc on and find out the TMV (True Market Value). This way you know how much people are paying for the same car in your area.

2) Get an online price quote from your local dealer in your area and find out how many of the exact model and configuration they have in stock. Do this with several dealers before you go to an actual dealership in person.

3) Go to the dealership during the work week in the mid morning (9AM – 11AM) and at the end of the month.

4) When you arrive at the dealer don’t act like you are interested, in buying a car. Be very casual about it, like you are on a fact finding mission

5) If you test drive the car and like the person who’s trying to sell you the card, then be prepared to negotiate. Remember steps 1 and 2, have those numbers handy and get ready for the fun to begin.

6) Start off by saying that you’ll purchase the car at $2500 – $5000 less than what your research tells you in steps 1 and 2 (this way you have room to negotiate). Next indicate that the other dealerships have quoted you a lower price than what they are offering and have plenty of the car you want in stock and that you are willing to buy from them, if the match the price. Keep in mind, you must be prepared to walk during any of this process, its a game that you have to play in order to get a fair price on the car. Also make clear that you are willing to make this happen today if they will sell you the car at the price your are asking. The key here is to be serious about this part, and not B.S. them.

Be persistent, be willing to walk away, and do your homework.I used this technique in December of 07 to buy my Toyota Prius and it worked.

Good Luck!

vanguardian's avatar

Look for the hungry salesman…The guy that jumps out at you is usually hurting for commission…Do your research and determine what you’re willing to spend…what options you want…know what you exactly want before going in there. Determine before hand what you are willing to pay. If you are serious about buying, tell them from the start…” I don’t want to waste your time, but I have a budget and will only pay $xxxxx for this car, not a cent more. So please, if you can’t do it, let me know and I will look elsewhere. I’m not trying to play games, thats just my cap for this car. Depending on the brand, the salesman will usually go to the sales manager and see if that price is feasible…Then he will come back and give you what he believes is a good price. Tell him that you appreciate his effort, but you are willing to buy today at “your” price. Again, tell him to let you know if they can do it or not…You don’t want to waste their time, but that is what you can pay…Now you can’t go in there with some crazy number, it has to be above invoice. Car dealers generally make anywhere from $0.00 to $5,000.00 on a car, obviously depending on the make/model/sticker price. Why would a dealer sell a car for no profit? The make the money on the back-end. F&I (Finance Dept) makes an average of $500.00 per transaction. The dealer has another unit sold. Dealers also have what is called a “floor plan”...showing cars that have been in inventory for a while and they need to move them. They need to hit certain numbers, because these dealers are actually Franchises. What they lose on one, they’ll make up on another…This won’t work for a brand new release car, or a “hot” car that is selling, cause they have people that want them. So figure out the make and model, do your research on the price and make a realistic offer. One added note…it is a good idea to go at the end of the month, because the salesman, salesmanager, general manager and dealer might need your deal to hit their numbers. They will even lose money to make their mark sometimes. Some dealers end of month processing goes to the 1st or 2nd day of the next month…So again, if you are offering a reasonable price and stay the course, you will eventually get it…

Also, watch out for trickery…if you are leasing, the will get funny with the down payment or mileage allowance, to make you monthly payments look more attractive. If you plan on financing, make sure you are getting a good % rate and they’re not trying to cleave you buy giving you a good price but hiking up the % rate to make more money off of you on the back-end.

Hope this helps…worked at a dealer for 10+ years

glial's avatar

We are quickly approaching the best time of year for car dealers. Either hurry, or wait until April to get a good deal.

Ah I miss those days….

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