If you're in the market for a new or used car, don't head to the dealership before you're prepared. If you want to get the best deal on a car, you've got to know how to negotiate. Don't let the sticker price scare you. You might think that the sticker price is the final answer, but that's not the case. Dealerships have a lot of wiggle room where prices are concerned. That's where the negotiations come into the picture. With the right steps, you can negotiate yourself into the best price for your new or used car. Here are three steps to get you started.
Clear Your Schedule
If you're ready to buy a car, make sure you clear your schedule. You never want to shop for cars when you're on a tight schedule. That's the quickest way to pay more for a car than you need to. Instead, give yourself an entire day of car shopping. That way, you have time to do some comparison shopping. Additionally, it also gives you time to negotiate for a better price on the car that you want. That's because you have time to consider the starting offers.
Do Your Homework
When you're ready to buy your next car, take time to do your homework. You don't want to head to the dealership before you have all the information you need to negotiate the best deal. First, you need to know the manufacturer's suggested retail price, or MSRP. That's the price that's typically listed on the window sticker. Remember, that's the suggested price, not the bottom-line price. Next, you want to know what other dealerships in the area are asking for the same cars. These tips provide the starting point for your negotiations.
Don't Show Your Hand
If you plan to buy a new car, don't share too much information in the beginning. Many salespeople want to know details like how much you have for a down payment, what price you're looking for, and how much you can afford in payments each month. Once they have that information, they may try to get as close to those numbers as possible. As a result, you may have a bigger down payment, or your monthly payments may be more than you can comfortably afford. Instead, consider giving a lower number on the down payment and set a lower monthly payment. That way, when the negotiations are over, you've given the down payment you wanted, and you have the monthly payments you can afford.
For more information on how to negotiate car prices, contact an auto dealer.