The worse thing you can do is to show up at a dealership or showroom without doing any research. Without facts, you are vulnerable towards getting sweet-talked into buying a car you dislike, or that is above your budget. If you want to make an informed decision, do your research – read forums, blogs, reviews and ask around in your circle. You need also to research the market price of the car you’re interested in to negotiate based on that price and not the sticker price on the car which has been marked up for profits.
Shopping at only one place
To get the best deal, you need to shop around. Even though you have a salesperson you know from past dealings, you will not necessarily get the best price from them. If shopping around sounds like a lot of work, online platforms like MUV for example, allow you to make comparisons between different sellers without having to leave the comforts of your home. These days a lot of dealerships also put their best deals online, so you can shop around online first and only visit the ones you have shortlisted.
Buying from a salesperson you dislike
You have to remember that the purchase of a car is a business decision, and too often people buy from a seller they feel sorry for or portrays to care for them and gives them a deal of a lifetime. Pick a salesperson who listens to your needs and can answer all your questions, not one who is pushy and doesn’t know much about the cars.
Buying under pressure
There are various sales gimmicks used to pressure you into buying as quickly as possible. “Limited time only” deals should not be a deciding factor, but instead, purchasing a big ticket item like a car should not be rushed for it is an investment that will stick with you long into the future. Salespeople love those who are in a hurry as it gives them leverage. You shouldn’t buy the deal, but instead the car itself.
Failing to negotiate
Be prepared to negotiate, even if you find the process uncomfortable. A car’s sticker price has a high-profit margin added on to give the salesperson room to bargain. Although you won’t be able to cut out profit altogether, you can always get the car for less than the sticker price. If you want a hassle-free way to get the best deal, a transparent bidding system like the one used at MUV is a good option for you.
Not doing a thorough test drive
It’s normal to feel uncomfortable driving a car that doesn’t belong to you, and that’s probably why most test drives are a mere 5 minutes of driving down a straight road and making a few turns here and there. This type of test drive will not give you a feel of the car or how it performs. Consider how you will be using the car, what conditions you’ll be driving in, what visibility is like for you and if space is sufficient.
Focusing only on monthly payments
Buyers often calculate only the monthly payments they can make and even share this figure with the salesperson. Both of these are a big no-no. The interest rate and length of the loan are equally important, and you need to know beforehand what you are comfortable with, so a salesperson doesn’t easily convince you into getting a longer loan so the car fits into your budget. This means you’ll end up paying more interest, and therefore overpaying for the car. Do note that car insurance premiums usually increase with the value of the vehicle.
Getting blinded by features
Make a list of features you absolutely must have so that you don’t get carried away by the features spiel the salesperson or product brochure tells you. Dealerships try to sell you extras to increase their profit margin, but essentially it’s a waste of your money, and there are many ways to upgrade your car for less when the need arises. Check out the coolest gadgets for your car in 2017 for ideas.
Buying new when used would have sufficed
Anyone shopping for a car should consider purchasing a used car first. This is because Certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles, transparent online bidding systems, and extended warranties have raised the bar for used vehicles. Official bodies inspect all used cars before it can be passed for sale, while websites like MUV get certified mechanics to check the car for roadworthiness and even go the extra mile to ensure all paperwork is in order before listing it for sale. Here is why buying a second-hand car makes total sense.
For all the tips, guides and tricks to purchasing your dream car, visit the BUY section on our blog.