The ability to keep the conversation focused on the monthly payment is the salesperson’s most powerful arrow.
Although, the monthly payment must suit the budget, negotiating solely on the payment is a reliable way to overspend on a car.
Simply put, doing so helps a skilled salesperson to manipulate all of the other numbers in the contract in order to increase the overall sum you can pay for the vehicle. It’s a tried-and-true dealer trick that pays off handsomely for them.
Buyers who just consider the payment often end up with car loans that are far too long, have unnecessary extras, and have high interest rates.
Both dealerships and private sellers anticipate you haggling over the car’s price.
Since a used car doesn’t have a fixed MSRP (manufacturer’s suggested retail price), you’ll have more wiggle room. Even if the vehicle is brand new, you can usually negotiate a major discount off the sticker price.
Find out how much the car is worth by studying its value on automotive websites to drive a hard bargain. If the car has “extras” like leather seats or a top-of-the-line entertainment system, make sure to factor them in.
When you’ve calculated an approximate average price, subtract 10% to 20% from it and make an offer to the seller. If you’ve been preapproved for a loan, you’ll have more influence.
You may also benefit from timing to get a better price. If you’re buying a new car and don’t need it right away, save your money by shopping in the last few months of the year.
Dealerships usually offer special deals at this time, such as cash back or 0% APR financing, in order to clear cars off the lot to make room for next year’s models.
Don’t have the patience to wait too long? Salespeople eager to meet their monthly sales goals are always willing to negotiate if you can hold out until the end of the month.
How should I go about negotiating?
Many first-time buyers are understandably apprehensive about negotiating, but there are steps you can take to protect yourself.
Attention on the total price:
Never tell the dealer, this is how much I want to pay every month.
You run the risk of being enticed by lower monthly payments, only to end up with a longer loan period and more interest. Instead, negotiate on the car’s total price.
Please take your time:
You do not like haggling over the price of your new vehicle, but hurrying through it may lead to a poor deal. Allow yourself as much time and attention as you need.
Keep in mind that a dealer is required to sell a car; you are not required to buy.
“Don’t be afraid to put it to bed. Don’t be afraid to go get a bite to eat and consider it over. Do not be pressured by the dealer.”