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How to Be Taken Seriously at a Dealership and Negotiate a Great Deal

It’s tax return season which means consumers have a little extra cash to burn. Some buy furniture, others put that money in savings, and some put it towards a down payment on a new vehicle. If you are thinking about purchasing a new vehicle, this blog post is for you. Lucky for you, I married a car salesman so that kind of makes me an ultimate car-buying expert. To help you, I am going to share my insights so you can get the best deal at the dealership.

How to Be Taken Seriously at a Dealership and Negotiate a Great Deal


Determine Your Dealership

The first thing you want to consider is the actual dealership and salesperson you want to work with. I know this is backward from what you’ve always thought but hear me out. Most people find the vehicle first and let that lead them to the dealer. But trust me, if you have a dealership and salesperson you are loyal to, they will be loyal to you. I have been purchasing vehicles from the same dealership for over ten years now, and I know the salesperson I am going to work with before I even look at the type of vehicle I want.

Figure Out Your Budget

Decide what you want to spend on a vehicle before you ever start shopping for one. This will keep you from being bulldozed at the dealership and pressured into a higher price or monthly payment. Keep in mind, salespeople will try to sell you on the monthly payment. But you should look at the overall cost of the vehicle, because it is easy to do extended loan terms on new vehicles these days and before you know it you are still upside down on a vehicle after five years of payments. It’s better to start with your overall budget for the vehicle and stick to it.

Learn About Your Dream Car

When you decide on the price, it’s time to do your research on the type of vehicle you want. Before you ever step foot on a dealer lot, you need to know the specifications of the vehicle you want to purchase. Include safety ratings and check out Consumer Reports. The more you know about the vehicle, the more seriously you will be taken by the sales staff. They will know you are not messing around when you can tell them more about the vehicle then even they can. While researching you should also look at NADA values and Kelley Blue Book values. Most dealers and lenders use NADA (National Auto Dealers Association), but it never hurts to have more knowledge on the vehicle you want to purchase. If you have a solid idea of what the vehicle is worth, the sales team will know you have done your research and take you seriously.

Get Pre-Qualified

Another great way to be taken seriously at the dealership is to get pre-qualified before you go in. This way you know what rate you should be getting. If you are unaware of what you qualify for, you could be shocked by the interest rate offered by the dealer. If you already know, you are more likely to be taken seriously as you can be realistic about your financial situation.

Find the Right Time

Finally, the best way to get a good deal on a new vehicle is to go at the end of the month. This is when salespeople are, for lack of a better term, ‘desperate’ to sell vehicles. Dealerships and sales professionals rely on the commission from selling vehicles, and if they don’t sell enough, their wages suffer. They want to make money just as much as you want a new vehicle. The closer you are to the last day of the month, the better deal you are going to get, and the more likely you are to close on the sale.

I would love to hear about your car buying experiences as well as any tips you have to get taken seriously at the dealership. Buying a vehicle should be fun and not stressful. Following these tips can help make that a reality for you. Happy car hunting.

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