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Out The Door (OTD) Pricing questions

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  • pepper50pepper50 Posts: 195
    What "documents" are included in these "document fees?" Title application fee should be included in the TT&L fee, so what other documents is it referring to in this additional charge?
    Also, what are realistic dealer prep fees? All they have to do is be sure the fluids are full, the plastic wrap is taken off the seats, a visual inspection, and carwash.
    Thanks.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    ........ When you get the OTD price ... is it going to be in your payment range ....?

    What most consumers forget about is that 1 little thing -- payment..!

    90% of all consumers are payment buyers -- If the OTD price is exactly what they want --- can they afford the payment ....

    If you haggle yourself silly ... and get what you want --- make sure you figured in the most important factor ......... your monthly payment..!

    Terry.
  • vwguildvwguild Posts: 1,620
    The Pre-Delivery Inspection, for VW, is paid
    for by VW...There should be no *Dealer Prep*
    Charges...

    Doc Fees typically refer to the processing of the
    actual paper for DMV...not the DMV Fees themselves...so that when you leave in your new
    car, all that you have to do is wait for the plates to arrive at your house...
  • pepper50pepper50 Posts: 195
    Thanks, VWguild, for your statement about document fees. Why is that not covered in the T,T,&L fee? Here in Texas, it's just a one-page form to register with DMV and pay the tax. Another page for title application I suppose. The customer could actually take both pages to the tax office themselves. In fact, I did it myself when I bought a van a decade ago. So assuming all that is covered in the T,T,&L fee, I don't understand what the additional "documents fee" would cover. Or is the document fee the fee for them to carry the two pages to the tax office and bring back the license plates?
  • vwguildvwguild Posts: 1,620
    Do you know Claude Pepper???

    Actually it is to process the HUNDREDS of DMV
    papers that go through in a month...There are
    people in Los Angeles that would pay you $500
    to got to the DMV for them...:)
  • eric102eric102 Posts: 122
    I have never paid a document fee on any of the cars I have bought (about 20), or any other fees. I always keep it simple, negotiate the price of the car from invoice (usually $100 to $200 over)plus tax and license, thats it, no screwing around. I let the dealer know up front thats how I want to do it, and its usually no problem. If it is, then I go down the street to the next dealer. Thats how its written up on the contract also, just the price of the car plus tax and license.

    Eric
  • vwguildvwguild Posts: 1,620
    I have no problem with that...
  • abtsellerabtseller Posts: 291
    our doc fee is $189. The general line is that is pays the clerks to process paperwork. Whatever. The important thing from my perspective is this...I have no authority to negotiate it from the deal. Neither does the New or Used car manager, neither does the General Manager. The owner is it, and he says don't ask. Fair enough? Luckily, our doc fee is less than most of our competition, and our pricing is aggressive enough to beat most of them anyway, so it rarely makes a difference. If I lose a deal over a $200 doc fee, I either wasn't doing my job properly in the rest of the process, or come survey time, I probably didn't want it anyway.

    Ed
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    However, it can be divided into 3 components:

    1) Dealer charges
    2) State sales tax on dealer charges
    3) Title and license charges

    2 and 3 are set by the government. You need to find out what they are before going to the dealer, otherwise, I fear (but don't know if this is possible) that they might try to add some dealer profit into 3.

    For example, suppose title fee is 15.00 and license fee is 80.00. Can the dealer charge more than $95.00 for "title and license"? I suspect they can.
  • jspata4ajspata4a Posts: 2
    ok, i'm reading a lot about getting the car of my choice (2003 Honda Accord EX-L) for $200 over invoice - but what i want to know - how do i compute all the other costs? or in other words, the final OTD price? is this just Tax, Tag, Title? and what do those run? at the end of the day - will the OTD price (including everything) roughly be equal to the MSRP price? please fill me in - this will be the first tiem i've bought a car by myself and want to get the best deal i can. im payign cash - if that matters. lemme know!
  • mirthmirth Posts: 1,212
    You can find out how much tag and title is from your state's DMV - they probably have it posted on their wed site. Tax is the sales tax for your state - here in Michigan it's 6%. Most dealers have a document fee that can run anywhere from $40-$400. $40-$50 is reasonable. Add all that up and you have your OTD.
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017
    jspata4a:

    You should only be concerned with how much above (or, even conceivably below) the dealer's invoice COST (not MSRP) at which you will be making your deal. (Edmunds has good links to enable you to make such calculations.) That is the real number to compare with other purchasers in other states and cities.

    The taxes and fees, tradeins etc are locally variable and should not enter into your calculations.
  • jratcliffejratcliffe Posts: 233
    Actually, OTD means a lot. You should be trying to get the best aggregate deal, regardless of what the line items on the deal look like. For example, three deals:

    1. $20k for the car, $6k for the trade, $1k in fees: Net $15k OTD
    2. $21k for the car, $6k for the trade, $0 in fees: Net $15k OTD
    3. $20k for the car, $5k for the trade, $0 in fees: Net $15k OTD

    At the end of the day, it's that OTD number that really matters. Whether it's a "fee" or the price of the car itself, it's still cash out of your pocket. As for trades, locally variable numbers _do_ matter. If, for some reason, your trade is worth $2k more at a dealer in the next town, then, even if that dealer wants $1k more for the car they're selling you, you're still $1k ahead of the game (assuming that driving one town over is worth $1k to you - it's not for some people).
  • audia8qaudia8q Posts: 3,138
    Only worry about how much you write the check for....The OTD number is by far the best way to compare deal...

    Don't let anyone fool you into worrying about XXX over invoice. This makes it way to easy to add a whole host of fees that will be sprung on you at delivery...
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    We bought an Accord EX a few years ago and computed an OTD price like this: invoice (I forgot what it was) + transportation + $150 for options + $250 for dealer markup. Then we added 3.1% Virginia sales tax and $50 for tag/title. It came to $20300.

    We offered that, they refused, we stated to walk out, and they accepted. The whole process took about 10 minutes.
  • winbrowinbro Posts: 235
    you really should take your state tax out of the equation if you are comparing to what other's are paying. for instance my accord in NY has 7.50% sales tax (OUCH), over twice the tax the person in Virginia paid.
  • mikefm58mikefm58 Posts: 2,882
    Since that's the total price we pay and some dealers like to add special fees. Here in Orlando county Florida, OTD equals purchase price + 6.5% sales tax + 22.50 for doc. stamps + about 3.50 for battery & tire waste fee + registration which can be found on the DMVs website.
  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    Does "OTD" in this discussion, also mean the final amount paid for the vehicle (once you turn over a check from the financial institution including your cash and downpayment), the eventual "cost" of the financing you're using (if any)? I realize, if you have the cash..interest paid..that's a non-issue.
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017
    OTD shouldn't mean much to participants in forums such as this when there are so many local variables. Someone on the west coast shouldn't care if someone on the east coast has a different tax rate. Someone buying without using a tradein shouldn't care if someone else got $500 or $15,000 for their tradein. Interest rates and down payments are highly variable depending upon who the purchaser is and who the lender is. Someone who pays exhorbitant fees can't relate to someone whose dealer doesn't pad the bill the same way. Cheaply available extras that a dealer throws into a deal, such as fancy lugnuts, mudflaps, upholstery spray, paint "protectant" or pinstriping don't mean anything to someone else buying a car without them. They are meant, by the dealer, to cloud the issue.

    We can all relate to a few basic, clearly ascertainable factors.

    1) What is the MSRP (sticker) price of the vehicle as equipped by the factory? Never negotiate down from here.

    2) What did the dealer pay (invoice) for the vehicle as equipped by the factory, destination charge included? Always negotiate up from here.

    3) What is the amount of Dealer Holdback (2%, 3%, etc) that must be added to #2, that can possibly be partially deducted in negotiations?

    4) What is the local dealer advertising cost that must be added to #2? Perhaps $200?

    5) What is the minimum amount of profit ($100 to $400?) that a dealer will accept after adding #3 to #1 and then deducting #2?

    Ask the dealer to show you his cost figures. These are the figures that EVERYONE should be using when discussing what they've paid. When you add all of the local gingerbread, you reach a only a personally meaningful OTD. But it should mean very little to anyone else.
  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    I also think OTD is what buyers should focus on. In BLANE's 5 point example there are too many variables and unknowns for a buyer to figure out on their own. Asking the dealer for his cost figures may get you nowhere. Why work with all these assumptions and risks?

    Here's the primary reason I like using an OTD figure: It put the pressure to make the deal on the shoulders of the dealer.

    I agree there are individual variables (not local, really, as each deal is separate unto itself). So there's no point in trying to compare your deal to someone else's, no matter where they are.

    But by using an OTD price it forces the dealer to make the numbers work and seal the deal. As a buyer you just sit there, enjoy their free soda, and relax, knowing that you are in the driver's seat. If the salesperson comes back with a counteroffer, you again are in control: Take the offer, revise your original offer a little, walk out the door, whatever.

    Negotiating up from invoice will work on SOME cars and SOME deals. But negotiating from an OTD price will work on ALL cars and deals. Doesn't matter where you are or what you're buying.
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