Scared to Negotiate? Mae Comes to the Rescue with Key Tips on Car Negotiation!
19 June 2023
The process of negotiating can seem uncomfortable and stressful, but fear no more! We find that coming prepared, and feeling assured makes a world of a difference, simply because you’ll radiate confidence and will trust your intuition when something isn’t right.
Just remember--you have the control of the conversation, and you have the options to choose from. Give your business and energy to those who deserve it.
Research, Research, Research!
In a chaotic storm of a pandemic, supply chain issues, inflation, and vehicle shortages, it is essential to determine the backbone of your negotiation through researching the market value of the car that you have in mind. Before going into a negotiation discussion, you should know what your opening offer will be, how you will counter the dealer's offer, and what your highest price will be.
Shop online or call/email local dealers to collect prices from multiple dealerships and directories, to get a sense of how much to negotiate for, according to what the current value is in the market.
Now that you understand what the car you want costs, when you are at the dealership, ask them what their best offer is. Don’t be afraid to ask for a breakdown of the true difference of costs, with and without additional packages, accessories, etc.
Salesperson's goal: To get you to purchase a car or put down a deposit asap.
Your goal: to get the car you want for a fair price.
The reality is that dealerships are starting with a high offer and working their way down, so don’t feel embarrassed for making an initial low offer. Come in assertive, and confidence in what you have researched.
Tips, Tactics, and Techniques
Trading a vehicle in? Be sure to understand the range of what your car may be worth. Dealerships are more likely to give you a better deal when you're trading a vehicle because they'll get to sell 2 cars instead of one.
Negotiate one thing at a time. For example, lock down a new car price first before negotiating on a trade-in. It's a balancing act to make sure you get the best deal on both, instead of getting undercut on either side of the equation.
Know your options- shop around for a better financing rate (banks, online lenders etc.)
Watch out for when they show the incremental costs as a "weekly" or “monthly” payment, as it can be hard to track the price of the car at the start. Instead, you can tell the salesperson you will discuss financing later and you just want to discuss the entire purchase price of the car for now.
Don’t forget that you can also negotiate your interest rate, trade-in, warranty, and other accessories available.
Know when to walk away. Be prepared to step away to "think about it" and you can come back another time or change to a different salesperson. If negotiating isn't going anywhere, simply excuse yourself and leave.
Good times for negotiating
The end of the month
If you’re buying an older model, negotiate when there are newer models out
The end of the year
Surplus of inventory in the market or vehicle model is not as frequently sold