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Buying Tips - How Do I Get the Best Deal?

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    graphicguygraphicguy Member Posts: 13,670
    socal....I do care if the person/dealership I'm working with is honest/good or dishonest/bad. I won't do business with someone I don't trust. I don't trust their terms of any deal. That, more times than not, translates into problems on the back end of the deal....or, some surprise charges after negotiations. That not only wastes my time, but it also will cause me to walk away from the deal.

    For the intimidated person...or someone with less negotiation skills, dealing with a an untrustorthy dealership/salesperson, can have disasterous financial results.

    We've all heard of the stories where someone negotiates the lowest price, only to have other charges crop up, undervaued trade-ins, inflated F&I fees and rates, etc that a more "cloak and dagger" dealer will practice.

    Buying from someone/someplace you trust should preclude the above.
    2023 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
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    graphicguygraphicguy Member Posts: 13,670
    slaterac....you can offer any deal you want. If you want an invoice deal with all fees included, then make the offer. The worst the dealership can say is NO. If they say YES, you've got yourself a heck of a deal.

    The question of if it's reasonable is not mine to make. That's up to the dealership.
    2023 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    Yeah I know you can't decide if that's reasonable but I have a quote at 300 over invoice somewhere else and I'd be asking to pay invoice and take a little less for my trade in and they can take that off the tax. If I could get the car for 16k I'd be happy to make the deal right there but anything more and I might ask them to throw in some things, like the wheel locks, cargo net, etc. and if they want me to pay 16.3k or so then I'd ask for the remote engine control. The key in negotiating I think is that I don't have to buy from them and I have 3 or 4 different mazda dealers working to come up with the best deal right now so I just want to give the dealer near me a shot to match any other offer otherwise I'll travel the 50 miles to the better deal.

    thanks again.

    slaterac.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    also, I'm asking them for 400 over invoice with the fees included and taking 2000 off for my car, that's worth 2200, there are their dealer fees. So I think low 16 is reasonable.

    slaterac.
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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    i dont care if you personally care if the salesperson is good or honest - but dont push your line of thinking on everyone by making general statements. i dont understand why you dont comprehend that this is what i am asking. not all dealers are dishonest and underhanded. please don't make disparaging comments encompassing all salespeople. there are plenty of them here on edmunds that take the time to answer questions and help people out.

    it doesnt make sense for a dealer to hand you the lowest possible price because that's not a set number. every dealer has different overhead and different "lowest possible prices". if you were selling lemonade, and it cost you 5 cents per glass, is that what you'd sell it for because its what keeps the money in the customer's pocket? if so, whats the point?!

    i guess you'll never be happy with dealers because they dont pay you to take the cars off their lot...i would imagine thats the only thing that would make you truly and utterly happy...

    -thene :confuse:
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    That, more times than not, translates into problems on the back end of the deal....or, some surprise charges after negotiations.

    You're creating more drama than you are resolving, and overvaluing "trust" when it comes to buying what is effectively a commodity good.

    The elements of a car purchase include:
    -The car
    -The trade
    -Taxes
    -License fees

    If you know what you're paying for the car, and know what you're getting for your trade, then you're most of the way there.

    The taxes and license fees are set by the government, not by the dealership, so that's a matter of math. Always bring a calculator to the dealership.

    If you don't want extras, then don't pay for them. They'll be listed on the closing statement. In these situations, an ink pen is a handy tool for crossing out and eliminating any junk from the statement.

    If you don't want to get ripped off on the financing, then go into the dealership with pre-approval, and learn how to calculate a loan payment so that you get the best terms possible. (Make sure that the loan doesn't include the Rule of 78, which only helps the lender, not the buyer.)

    That's it. Unless the dealership is faking VIN numbers, turning back odometers on demos, etc., it's not really all that difficult. But you do have to go into it with eyes wide open, and understand what you're signing before you sign it.
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    Why not post something that can help customers to save money?

    This thread is here to provide buyers with advice about getting the best deal. It's not here to help them to pay more (presumably, they already know how to do that, which is why they want the help). It's also not here to convince them that car dealers are honest (something that many people don't believe, but that I personally am unconcerned about, either way. I expect a salesperson to work the deal for his or her team, that's what s/he's paid to do.)

    If you have any input that will help car buyers to save money, I'm sure it will be appreciated. Unfortunately, you are making this a discussion about me personally, when I am not the topic of this thread.
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    isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Well,

    You are assuming they will make money off your trade.

    I have no idea what it is but it may be something they don't even want. They may be planning on wholesaling it and hoping to break even.

    Even so, they can buy used cars all day at the auction.

    Just offer them 300.00 less and see what happens.
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    It is unreasonable to ask the car be at invoice and trade your car and say no dealer fees since they are going to make money off my car and selling at invoice anyway?

    For your own sake, you should value the new car and the trade seperately. Pay as little for the new car as possible, and get as much for your trade as possible.

    In any case, the dealership can't give you a legitimate offer for your trade without having seen your car. Try to assess the value of your car objectively, and make sure that you get paid an amount that is as high as possible, while remembering that your used car may very likely have certain flaws that do legitimately reduce its market value.

    Rather than leaping to make a numeric counteroffer, you have other options, such as questioning how the dealer arrived at that figure, making reference to other deals available in the marketplace, or simply asking for more. I would form a game plan, and try to get the dealer to come down another notch before resorting to offering a number of your own.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    What's the rule of 78?
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    isellhondas,

    300 less for my trade in? I can do that, I'm looking to be around 16k after trade in anything more than 16.4k is too much unless they want to add a whole bunch of things that I wouldn't get on my own.

    slaterac.
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    The Rule of 78 is a method of calculating payments that pushes interest payments toward the front end of the loan. That means that it takes you longer to pay off the principal, and keeps you "upside down" for longer than you'd otherwise be. If the car is stolen or totalled, it will make your situation that much worse, because you will have even less equity or more negative equity than you would have otherwise had.

    Federal law forbids it for loans of over five years, and some states don't allow it at all, but otherwise, you need to watch out for it.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    socal, you are right I wouldn't offer them a number until they offer me a few numbers. I'd like to get 2000 for my car, which I have been quoted at for two other dealers. And a mazda 3 i touring under 17950 because I have that offer somewhere else as well. So I was thinking if they could give me a deal around 17750 for the car and take 2000 for my car that would leave me at 15750 and then I would take the taxes at 163k. However, I'd like to get an otd price around 18k, before my trade in, which I know is asking a lot but then again I'm the consumer and do not need to buy a new car from them when I can get a better deal somewhere else. I'm in no hurry and that plays to a great advantage for me.

    slaterac.

    p.s. that rhymed. haha.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    thanks. I thought it was the other way around so I'm glad that I asked.
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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    socal,

    its also not here for you to make backhanded comments regarding the integrity of ALL salespeople.

    regarding buying cars - i find what i want (its not too hard, i can narrow it down to one pretty much right off the bat). i determine what a fair price for the car is, and buy it if the seller accepts my offer. done deal. i dont concern myself over holdback, factory to dealer incentives and the like. that's just too much stress to deal with - and life is too short.

    i know what you're response will be - as it has been for many other people who have indicated this is how they wish to buy a car. "you're advocating people leave money on the table - thats not truly getting the best deal possible"

    in all honesty - "best deal" is subjective. not everyone wants to drag a salesperson through the mud, put up a charade of being naive, and all the other things you choose to do. and you know what? everyone can do as they choose. you arent always right, im not always right, isell or british or logic or bobst isnt always right...but it works for them.

    -thene
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    isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    You and I think alike.

    Some people are just obsessed over money and spending more than someone else may have.

    I don't have a problem with that but that's not me.

    I guess we are all different and none of us are really "right" or "wrong".
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    I'd like to get 2000 for my car, which I have been quoted at for two other dealers.

    Have you considered just selling it yourself? For a car that cheap, selling it as a private party should be relatively easy if the car is desirable and in decent shape. (Can't help you if your car happens to be a 78 FIAT or if the "rust" color is actual rust, but otherwise, you'll be selling it to cash buyers who should be able to complete the deal fairly quickly.) You could advertise it on the free sites, including Craigslist, and see how well you do. Clean it up nicely and consider fixing any obvious problems that are both low cost and would get you bang-for-the-buck (i.e. more value than it cost for the improvements.)

    You might also want to take it to Carmax to get a quote, if there's one located in your area.

    If you go the private sale route, check with your local DMV and get the paperwork and procedures down before you sell it, so you can move to close the deal as quickly as possible. If you live in California and belong to AAA, use it for the DMV services, as they are much easier to deal with and have much shorter lines.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    I've looked at that but I think it might be too much of a hassle for me to sell it on my own.
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    biancarbiancar Member Posts: 965
    If it's too much hassle to sell on your own - then you have to expect less from the dealer than what you might get on your own. That's only fair. In a sense, you're "paying" the dealer to be your agent in re-selling the car. If you could get $2,000 selling on your own, then something like $1600, 1700, somewhere around there, is probably fair for the dealer.

    Figure you're paying for the convenience. If convenience is worth something to you, then that's what it's worth.
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    snakeweaselsnakeweasel Member Posts: 19,362
    The rule of 78 only applies to pre-computed loans that obligate the burrower to pay a set amount of interest along with the principal of the loan regardless of the fact that they pay it off early. The rule of 78 (so named because it uses the sum of all digits to 12, the number of months in a year) was developed as a short cut to determining the amount of a payoff prior to the widespread use of calculators. What it does is give a larger payoff than if you calculated the actual loan amount.

    Most loans the rule of 78 will not apply unless you have very bad credit.

    2011 Hyundai Sonata, 2014 BMW 428i convertible, 2015 Honda CTX700D

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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    Here are two links that explain this very well:

    "Figuring out auto loan terms"

    "Steer clear of the perilous 'Rule of 78s'"
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    I've looked at that but I think it might be too much of a hassle for me to sell it on my own.

    This may not be the best or most appropriate thread in which to discuss it, but you might want to doublecheck on your assumptions.

    If the car is really, really conspicuously bad, then yes, it will be hard to sell. If it is an unpopular nameplate in your market area, then it will also be hard to sell.

    But otherwise, it may not be tough at all. You might want to post some specifics about it in the Used Car thread, and see what advice you get.
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    isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    This makes a big difference.
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    slateracslaterac Member Posts: 85
    I can get 2000 from the dealer, assuming that they are like the other two dealers that have given me that same price.

    slaterac.
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    snakeweaselsnakeweasel Member Posts: 19,362
    Basically the rule of 78 works this way. Say you borrow $10,000 on a 60 month loan and your payments are $200 a month. First you add all the numbers between 1 and 60 together and get 1,830, then you calculate how much interest you will pay over the life of the loan (200 times 60 minus 10000) which is $2,000. well the first month you pay 60/1830ths of that $2,000 of interest, the nest month its 59/1830ths of that interest. all the way to the last month where you pay 1/1830th of $2,000 of interest.

    The problem with this system is that it does pay more interest at the beginning that you really should. Its intended purpose was to make calculating a payoff easier back when you didn't have calculators to do it.

    2011 Hyundai Sonata, 2014 BMW 428i convertible, 2015 Honda CTX700D

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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    its not even the fact that i don't care about money. believe me, i dont make tons. however i pick and choose my battles, and if i am comfortable with what i am paying, im not gonna worry that i could have paid less if i had pretended i was naive, etc. just not worth it. i mean, when you go to the restaurant, you leave a tip. you dont HAVE to, but you just do. uh oh! its money on left on the table though (literally! ha!) but if the service is good, i dont mind leaving a bit more than usual.

    yeah, a car purchase is bigger than a dinner at applebees, but the concept is similar.

    leaving 100, 200 or 300 on the table will not kill me. just my two cents..

    -thene :sick:
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    leaving 100, 200 or 300 on the table will not kill me.

    It wouldn't kill the dealership, either. Hey, it's just $300, so why is the sales manager making such a big deal about it?
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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    maybe because you've already dragged them through the mud for everything else?

    i mean its just $20,000 - they make more than that in a year right? they can afford to give you a car for free right?

    :sick:
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    maybe because you've already dragged them through the mud for everything else?

    OK, so you're advising buyers to leave money on the table, because it is unpleasant for the dealership if the buyer pays less.

    You're entitled to your view, of course. I just don't see how that's a tip that helps the buyers.
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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    i already explained that no one person's view is right or wrong. thats how i choose to handle the situation. are you looking for validation or something on how you buy cars? i dont understand?

    i am not advising anyone to do anything. i am explaining how I buy cars...nothing more. if you don't like it, dont do it.

    my tip to buyers is do what makes you happy. if dragging dealers through the mud makes you happy, go for it. if buying at MSRP makes you happy, then go for it. if not buying a car and riding a donkey makes you happy, by all means...

    please, do not put words in my mouth...
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    isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Thene,

    You might as well give up.
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    isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I don't think I have advised people to leave mooney on the table.

    We are all different. If you really enjoy driving from store to store, three hour grind sessions, pitting one store against the others, that's fine!

    I say life is short because it is. If a person wants to live that life pinching every cent that's great!

    I'm as frugal as anyone and I live within my means. There just comes a point where I'll make a major purchase without fretting later that I just might have paid more than someone else did.

    At least Socal uses some restraint when he throws a barb in our direction. That's more than I can say for your post!

    "the word itself is an insult"...nice.
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    cobbgacobbga Member Posts: 6
    leaving 100, 200 or 300 on the table will not kill me. just my two cents..

    -thene

    Read above. Don't try to deny what you just posted. $300 is a month's payment for a car.

    And the 'car salesman' is not the word coined by me. Its the general perception of the business. Its your chosen profession that gives you this honor, not me.

    This discussion is about how the consumer gets the best deal. Its not about 'how life is short or pay extra for a nice car salesman' discussion. May be the car salesmen can get together and start a thread saying 'how to maximize the profit for dealership', your posts are approproate for that.

    Car salesman pinched every penny they can from the customers and more. They are still doing it. So nothing wrong in customer squeezing every penny from the dealer. The car salesman spend every minute doing that and if the customer wants to do it, its evil. Talk about a double standard.

    Like socal says, its all business. Dealerships want to maximise the profit. Customers wants to as minimum as possible. I would love to see a dealership leave $300 on the table because the customer is 'nice'. In that case its usually the opposite happens. Customer gets taken in all directions.
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    tsgeiseltsgeisel Member Posts: 352
    I look at it like this:

    If I feel really good about my car buying experience, if the salesman was truly helpful, and I didn't feel like I was dealing with someone who gives salespeople a bad name, the $100-$300 I may leave on the table is like a tip for good service.

    And, in fact, compared to a restaurant, it's a really tiny tip, at that.
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    viclikescars2viclikescars2 Member Posts: 11
    Is there anything wrong with trying for the best deal you can get, and then going back the next day and giving the salesman an actual tip? That's what I did. The buying process was short, the deal good enough; I liked the way I was treated. So, the next day, I went back to the dealership and stuck a "C" note in my guy's hand. He seemed to like it...
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    jipsterjipster Member Posts: 6,251
    Yeah...I'd much prefer it be set up like a Red Lobster too. Tip the salesperson according to the service you got. I'd rather see the money go to someone who needs/earned it, than some rich fatcat of an owner or salesmanager.

    Selling a $20,000 car and only getting a $50 mini is a pretty cold way to treat your employees. Though a lot of people probably wouldn't tip due to the "salesmen" stigma.

    Don't know if dealership would approve of slipping the salesman a "C" note, without them getting a cut.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
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    biancarbiancar Member Posts: 965
    I believe slipping the salesman extra money could get the guy in big trouble if the manager or owner finds out about it. Could be considered an illegal kickback or bribe.
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    Is there anything wrong with trying for the best deal you can get, and then going back the next day and giving the salesman an actual tip?

    If the dealership learned about this, I have little doubt that it would demand the money or (more likely) fire the salesperson.

    The dealership wants to dole out the cash from the gross proceeds paid by the buyer. Chances are good that had you paid an extra $100 for the car, the dealership would have received most or all of the additional money.

    Understand that the commission structure is often set to encourage the salesperson to go for a high price, because s/he is paid very little for a "mini", but gets a relatively higher percentage of the higher-priced deals. The incentives for the salesperson often (although not always) become much more lucrative at the higher price points than they would at rock bottom prices.

    If the dealership was run on tips, the salespeople would be motivated to give the cars away so that they could earn their tips. Their individual profit motives would be in direct conflict with the dealership's goals. So the dealership wants to control the incentives, and to make sure that the salesperson is motivated to do well for the dealership.

    In theory, the sales manager should balance two, sometimes conflicting, goals of (a) maximizing profits while (b) achieving a high closing rate. This person will make the call whether to keep trying to go for a better deal, or whether to recover whatever money possible from the time already spent, getting this deal closed so that they can move on to the next one. This point when the sales manager's priorities shift from Point A to Point B is what I refer to as the "point of no return", when the focus moves toward closing, even at low or no return, rather than continuing to push for the gold.
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    mleanhmleanh Member Posts: 17
    thene or isell,

    it seems that both of you have a great deal of experience on the selling side and could offer the readers of this forum some good ideas.

    however, both of you appear to spend most of your posts engaging in a back and forth w/ socala, so in some aspect we don't fully benefit from your knowledge.

    so, i would like to take this opportunity to invite you to share your insights with us on how to get a better deal on the following scenario:

    1. I have narrowed down to one car model I want. I have done my due diligence and come up with a "fair price," which is supported by neutral third-parties such as Edmunds.

    2. I go to the dealer, find a salesperson who is courteous to me and offers a pleasant buying experience. I treat him with respect and we move into the pricing phase.

    3. According to my research, I know $20,000 to be a fair price, with a fair amount of profit already built in for the dealer based on dealer cost and market conditions.

    4. The salesperson offers $22,000 and says that is the lowest they can go.

    5. I want the car, but $2,000 represents a significant amount of money to me whether it is upfront or spread over the life of the loan. Basically, paying $2,000 more is not an option for me.

    I, along with other readers of this forum, would welcome any specific Buying Tips you can offer us. What could I do as a buyer to be able to buy the car for $20,000?
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    bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    Willing to pay $20,000 for a car.
    What I would do.

    Tell the salesman to write up the contract. Tell him to put $20,000 on the bottom line. If he puts something else on the bottom line, mark it out, put in $20,000, inital it. In either case, sign and date it. Tell him thats your offer and go find someone with the authority to approve it.

    When they herd you into the F&I guys office (Why did we not have these people 20 years ago?), say 'No' several times.

    Pay for the car or if the dealer does not take your offer, go to another dealer.
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    thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    mleanh,

    believe me, its frustrating. but its hard to see someone spread such negativity in an all encompassing manner. i dont sell cars anymore, but i did for two years. its offensive to have someone make a generalization regarding salespeople when i was one, and i was not like socal likes to describe. i fought my manager for the best price up front - because i knew that was the best way to go. he'd always yell at me "are you gonna sell any cars, or give them away?" we had another local dealer that would hand them away too - and we had to compete - because thats what people look for. but i can't tell you even then, how many people would whine and complain and make the whole process miserable.

    i worked with a guy for 4 weeks on a pathfinder, and he went back and forth with another dealer (test drove and all that with me) "well this guy gave me xxx for my trade, and this guy's dealer fees are xxx..." on and on for four weeks. finally, it came down to $50 more and i said no. manager said no. we just didn't want the business from him anymore. it was about the principle, not about making money. there comes a point when its just not worth it for the DEALER to bend over and take it.

    anyways sorry for the rant. believe it or not (like it or not) life is too short to fight over $100 bucks in my opinion. there is plenty of information out there to tell you what a fair price on a car is (both new and used). research, determine what YOU want to spend, and go offer it to someone. it shouldn't be any harder than that. if you want to grind for every penny - your choice...but it certainly isnt mine.

    -thene :sick:
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    jmonroejmonroe Member Posts: 8,989
    5. I want the car, but $2,000 represents a significant amount of money to me whether it is upfront or spread over the life of the loan. Basically, paying $2,000 more is not an option for me.

    Leave and go to another dealer who sells the same car. If he won't sell for the price you want to pay, leave and go to another .... If all dealers give you the same price, then that's as good as you can do at that particular time. If no other car will satisfy you, then you will have to wait until you have more money or try again towards the end of the model year.

    I would not spend more than 30 minutes at any dealership, if you can't get it done by then this means you are going to spend too much time shopping. As our dealer friends have said, "life is too short to be spent haggling over the price of a car" !!

    I also would not waste my time playing the game suggested in post #530.

    jmonroe

    '15 Genesis V8 with Ultimate Package and '18 Legacy Limited 6 cyl

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    biancarbiancar Member Posts: 965
    life is too short to fight over $100 bucks in my opinion. ... if you want to grind for every penny - your choice...but it certainly isnt mine.

    And yet - you DID grind for FOUR WEEKS and finally couldn't come to a deal for the sake of $50.

    Look, if that $50 is worth your taking four weeks' of aggravation and fighting and finally cancelling the deal over, why wasn't life too short for that?

    I love it how you in sales say "life's too short to haggle over xxx" and yet, you do it and you lose deals over small amounts of money. Don't blame the customer for that.

    Personally, I'm with the school of thought that if you can't arrive at a mutually agreeable price within 15 - 20 minutes, the deal probably isn't going to get done. Time to pick up my marbles and go elsewhere. I can't imagine getting into a four weeks' negotiation marathon.
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    graphicguygraphicguy Member Posts: 13,670
    No drama here.

    My deals are simple. After I've done my research, I make my offer. My offers are all inclusive. I write it on the offer sheet...."offer includes all fees and taxes". I've also figured those in advance of my offer. If the offer is rejected by a couple of dealerships, you know it's too low. Walk away and rethink it. The untrustworthy dealerships still try to add more fees to that offer (the more uncrupulous, try to hide them). The dealerships I trust, don't.

    Anyone can deal with untrustworthy dealerships any time they want....for any reason they want. I just won't do it.

    To those that asked for money saving tips, they're posted all over the place. In general....

    --don't negotiate payments, negotiate the price of the vehicle.
    --know what the market is for the car you're interested in like the stock situation....they got a lot of them, or few of them, popularity of the model....is it a "hot seller" (less, if any, discount), or is it a slower selling model (dealership wants to move them.....bigger discount etc.
    --Can you afford it? Are you trying to buy a $50K car, when you can only afford a $35K car (rule of thumb, don't do it).
    --One of my personal "rules"....if you can't afford to buy it, you can't afford to lease it. Leases make sense if you trade every 2-3 years, or if you have a business to take the tax advantages. I don't know how many times I've heard...."gee, to get a lower payment, I leased my car for 60 months. Now, I don't want it, can't afford the repairs, etc.
    --Know what your trade is worth.....plenty of resources....Edmunds (particularly rroyce in the "trade values" thread), KBB, NADA. Don't be surprised if those trade value books are high for the area you're in (particularly NADA). A trade is worth what any dealer is willing to pay you for it. Get a couple of dealers, at least, to put a number on your trade.
    --Know your credit standing, and if possible, the rate your bank, credit union, etc, is willing to give you. Dealerships DO provide loan services. They make money on that service. But, many times, because of their loan volume, they can indeed beat your lending institution's rate.
    --look in your newspaper's car ads. See what they're advertising the car you're interested in. Use that as a general guide to what you can buy a particular model for. Sometimes you can even beat that ad. Remember, those ads are meant to get you into the showroom. Sometimes, those ads say only "one" at this price. Be aware of that.
    --Another "graphicguy" rule....never finance over 60 months (no matter if the interest rate is "0"). Never lease anything over 36 months.
    --If you don't trust something about the deal, the dealership, or the salesperson, walk out. You'll never feel "right" about the deal.
    2023 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    If the offer is rejected by a couple of dealerships, you know it's too low.

    That's incorrect, and a critical flaw in your methodology.

    You are presuming that there some Magic Price, and that the dealer will give it to you at first blush just by you writing up your offer.

    More often than not, this Grand Revealing is not going to happen. The dealer will make you work to get whatever his lowest price may be, it will not be revealed immediately. And it won't be revealed if you are such an ineffective negotiator that the dealer realizes that it is unnecessary to show it to you in particular.

    The dealer will not begin at the lowest possible price point, and it's highly unlikely that he will allow you to, either. But that price will become more attainable as the dealer invests more effort into the transaction and begins to prioritize the desire to close over the level of profitability. The more time invested, the more the seller wants to recoup something from all of his time and effort.

    It helps to know that your negotiation style is going to impact your ability to get a low price. Which means that if you use an ineffective style, the dealer is in a position to judge your effort and expect more from you because he realizes that your method is going to be equally ineffective with others. A smart seller will capitalize on that weakness, and act accordingly.

    The whole point of good negotiation (from the buyer's standpoint) is to avoid setting the base and then moving it upward arbitrarily. Your goal should be to let the dealer push the price downward as much as possible before you've offered anything, then hit them low (less than what you'd willingly pay), then if necessary, offer a bit more in order to create the appearance of compromise and to make your deal worth working for.

    Some buyers believe that they can ignore the rules of negotiation and rewrite them because it makes them "comfortable" to do so. Yet this presupposes that you can singlehandedly impact centuries of inculturated human behavior or rewrite basic sales methods used throughout the western world, which you can't. The rules are what they are -- your job should be to learn those rules and then adopt proven methods to your style so that you can get the most out of them.

    And again -- research is not a substitute for negotiation. It is not possible to learn everything about the market simply by reading about it. You can learn a lot, but you certainly won't learn about the motivations of the sellers if you do all of the talking.
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    jipsterjipster Member Posts: 6,251
    research is not a substitute for negotiation.

    Good point. Research is just one phase of the purchasing process, by itself it can get you a fair to good price. But, being a good negotiator, and understanding the "game", can take it to the next level...getting the "best" deal.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
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    graphicguygraphicguy Member Posts: 13,670
    We'll just have to respectively disagree.

    If your objective is to buy a car. Dealer's objective is to sell a car. You go to the dealers in your area that sell that car....they reject your offer....then you're not meeting your objective. The dealer isn't meeting their objective.

    You can negotiate, grind, pout, yell, scream all you want to. If your offer has been rejected, your terms aren't agreeable to the sellers (dealers). Only way to know if you're close on the number is to have it rejected.

    Like bobst, I make my offer. It's agreed to or not. If it's not, I try the same offer somewhere else. I have no idea what the dealership's overhead is. Don't care. What might work for one dealer, won't work for another. I do know what I've seen, what I've researched, what I've read and what I've observed. My offer is based on all of that.

    If one dealer rejects my offer and another one accepts it, I'm confident enough that I'm leaving with a good deal. 15 mintues at a dealer and I'm pretty much done with the offer phase. I've either bought a car, or I haven't. No need for a lot of "back and forth".

    I do agree that just reading about it doesn't do the trick. You've got to be observant, too. You have to observe the stock situation at the dealership, the amount of traffic they have (or lack thereof), etc. And yes, the reason we have two eyes and ears...and only one mouth, we should spend more time observing and listening than we do talking. Who knows, we might be in danger of learning something. ;)
    2023 Honda Accord Hybrid Touring
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    socala4socala4 Member Posts: 2,427
    If your objective is to buy a car. Dealer's objective is to sell a car. You go to the dealers in your area that sell that car....they reject your offer....then you're not meeting your objective.

    That outlook is almost a guarantee that you will pay more than you had to. If you prioritize an assured outcome over price, you will invariably defer to the goal of that outcome by raising your price. A classic error in negotiation is to care too much, or to define a "win" as getting the product in question, rather than getting the right deal.

    Your view is flawed because it ignores a fact of human nature -- that people rarely agree immediately to things to which they will ultimately agree. A good salesperson does not expect a prospective customer to say "yes" immediately to his initial advance, so why would you expect the salesperson to do the same?

    In the dating world, any guy who expected an immediate "yes" right after making his "offer" to a prospective new friend would spend a lot of time at home alone. Getting to "yes" generally requires appropriate timing and delivery, and a bona fide acceptable low-price offer that is not accepted immediately may very well be accepted later. (In part, this is because the seller is testing you to see if you are bluffing, or whether you really mean it.)

    You can negotiate, grind, pout, yell, scream all you want to. If your offer has been rejected, your terms aren't agreeable to the sellers (dealers). Only way to know if you're close on the number is to have it rejected.

    Negotiation is rarely so black-and-white as you have described it. A smooth negotiator looks for shared positions, and for opportunities to convert objections into agreement without giving up too much.
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    snakeweaselsnakeweasel Member Posts: 19,362
    Only way to know if you're close on the number is to have it rejected.

    How in the world can you tell if your close on the number simply by a rejection? An offer of $1 on a Maybach is not in the same universe as close and it will be rejected.

    2011 Hyundai Sonata, 2014 BMW 428i convertible, 2015 Honda CTX700D

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    jmonroejmonroe Member Posts: 8,989
    15 mintues at a dealer and I'm pretty much done with the offer phase. I've either bought a car, or I haven't. No need for a lot of "back and forth".

    This is the way I do it (pretty much, however, I'll usually let them hang themselves for 30 minutes) and it works for me.

    I wonder how many others out there do it like us ?

    Like I've said before, "there is ALWAYS another piece of sheetmetal on wheels just down the road".

    jmonroe

    '15 Genesis V8 with Ultimate Package and '18 Legacy Limited 6 cyl

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