Between new and used vehicles, Americans buy around 57 million automobiles each year. It’s also an unfortunate truth that some people overpaid for those vehicles.
In some cases, they needed another vehicle in a hurry and bought one. In other cases, the buyers just disliked normal tactics like negotiating over the price.
If you’re in the market for another vehicle or think you will be in the near future, you likely prefer saving money on the purchase. If you’re new to the car buying process, keep reading for five car buying tips that will help you save.
Read Up Ahead of Time
Knowing what you want can go a long way toward saving you money. If all you know is that you want a compact SUV, that’s a very broad field. It means that the salesperson at the dealership can steer you toward whatever vehicle will get them the best commission.
Knowing a make an model gives you control and a better chance of saving on a car.
Once you pin down the make and model you want, shop online first and don’t limit your search to dealers. A search for something like “2021 Nissan Rogue for sale” won’t just bring up dealerships, but individuals selling that vehicle as well. You may well find a private seller who wants to offload one for less because they don’t like it or discovered they didn’t really use it.
Don’t Discount Used Vehicles
The term “used car” still evokes images of greasy salesmen tricking people into buying cars that will die almost the second they leave the lot. These days, though, many used cars are only a year or two old. You can often see a huge saving over a new car by buying last year’s model.
Take Advantage of Trade-in Offers
While trade-in offers often don’t mean much for older cars or ones with a lot of mileage, a newer car with lower mileage can often substitute for a down payment. Even with older cars, some dealerships will give you a few hundred bucks, which can knock a payment off your loan.
Consider the Financing
Don’t just shop for the lowest price on a car. You must also consider the cost of financing. Look around for dealerships offering better financing deals.
Sometimes, getting a more expensive car or considering other types of cars with better financing terms will save you more money in the long run than a cheaper sticker price.
Getting the Most from These Car Buying Tips
The car buying tips above aren’t the only ways you can save money when purchasing a car. They also don’t apply equally to every buyer. If you know the exact make and model you want, research isn’t necessary.
With that said, shopping around online, comparing financing options, and even considering a used model are useful ways for almost anyone to save on their next vehicle purchase.
Looking for more car buying tips? Check out some of the posts in our Auto Car section.