DEFENSE CONTRACTS SOUTH FCU

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The car buying process can be one of the most stressful transactions that someone experiences.  Here are some tips to make the process more enjoyable.

General Tips

Research

Your Trade-In

Negotiations

The Finance Office

 

General Tips:
bulletDo not buy a car like you are buying a pair of blue jeans.  Do your research before going to the dealership.
bulletWeekend assistance from the Credit Union can be available with advance notice.
bulletYou can save a large amount of money by buying a 1 or 2 year old car that has already had the first year of depreciation reduced in the price.
bulletTake a friend or family member with you to the dealership.  
bulletHave your Credit Union financing pre-approved before going to the dealership.
bulletThe car that you are wanting to purchase is not the last car in this world for sale.  The salesman knows that if you leave the dealership the odds of them selling you a car drops dramatically.  They will make it feel like the world would not be the same if you did not sign paperwork today to close the sale.
bulletDo not hesitate to walk away from any deal at any time you feel uncomfortable or pressured.  You are in control of the transaction.  Do not worry about the feelings of the salesperson.
bulletNegotiate the purchase price on the new car before dealing with your trade-in.  Each transaction should be completely separate.
bulletHelp prevent buyer's remorse:  Rent the car you want to purchase for a few days or a weekend to get a true feel for a vehicle instead of a ten minute test drive.  Rental cars cost very little to rent for an extended test drive.
bulletBetter deals can usually be made at the end of the month, especially if a dealer is having a slow month.

 

Research:
bulletThe Credit Union has the Dealer invoice car guides that provide the invoice and the sticker price, the  Manufactures Standard Retail Price (MSRP).
bulletYou will likely be offered credit life insurance, disability insurance, GAP insurance and an extended warranty.  The items are high profit and commissioned items.  Do your research and know if these items are in your best interest to purchase them.
bulletResearch your trade-in value.  There are several websites that can give you the value of your trade-in.  National Automotive Dealer Association Guide is at www.nadaguides.com.  Kelly Blue book is at www.kbb.com.  Edmunds is located at www.edmunds.com.

 

Your Trade-In:
bulletResearch your trade-in value.  There are several websites that can give you the value of your trade-in.  National Automotive Dealer Association Guide is at www.nadaguides.com.  Kelly Blue book is at www.kbb.com.  Edmunds is located at www.edmunds.com.
bulletSell your car yourself and you will almost always end up with more money in your pocket.
bulletCarMax will evaluate your trade-in for free and you do not have to buy a car from them.  You can compare CarMax's offer to the Dealership's offer.  There are some tax considerations to factor into a dealership's trade-in.  Contact the Credit Union to discuss the tax implications of the trade-in.
bulletDo a search for your trade-in and the new car you want to buy on www.autotrader.com and see what the current market is for the car.
bulletClean and wash your car before taking it to be evaluated at the dealership.
bulletDo not tell the dealership what your payoff is on your trade-in before they give you the valuation.  It is irrelevant, and they do not need to know the figure to give you a valuation on your car.  If your car is worth $10,000 and you owe $9,200, you would likely get an offer for $9,200 if you tell them the payoff before they look at your car.
bulletThe dealership will often ask what kind of range did you want for your trade-in.  Do not give an amount at this time.  You can answer, "I would like the maximum amount for the trade in".
bulletDealerships usually make more profit from your trade-in than they make on the new car purchase.
bulletNegotiate the best possible price on the car you want to purchase before discussing your trade-in.  Dealerships can make it look like they are giving you an wonderful trade in amount, however they have increased the purchase price by an inflated amount and added the same amount to the trade-in.  
bulletNegotiate the purchase price on the new car before dealing with your trade-in.  Each transaction should be completely separate.

 

Negotiations:
bulletMost Dealerships have a Credit Union or Fleet Department that will charge a set dollar amount for a car.  An example of how a car will be priced is a Honda Accord will be priced at $300 over invoice.  Ask to speak with the Fleet Department or Credit Union Sales Department.
bulletBe sure to ask if there are any manufacturer rebates or incentives on the particular vehicle.  We had a member that found a car for straight invoice, and she thought she was getting a good deal.  We had another member that had purchased the same exact vehicle a few days earlier with a $1500 rebate.  She called the dealer offering the rebate and saved $1500 in less than 5 minutes.
bulletNegotiate from the invoice price not the inflated MSRP sticker price.
bulletDo not tell the dealership what your payoff is on your trade-in before they give you the valuation.  It is irrelevant, and they do not need to know the figure to give you a valuation on your car.  If your car is worth $10,000 and you owe $9,200, you would likely get an offer for $9,200 if you tell them the payoff before they look at your car.

 

The Finance Office:
bulletGet a pre-approval from the Credit Union before you reach this office.  The Credit Union can complete the financing with the dealership with a phone call once the deal is complete.
bulletDo not relax and think you are just signing your paperwork in this office and the negotiations are complete on the car sale.  This is one of the most profitable departments at the dealership.
bulletYou will likely be offered credit life insurance, disability insurance, GAP insurance and an extended warranty.  The items are high profit and commissioned items.  Do your research and know if these items are in your best interest to purchase them.
bulletDo not sign for alternative financing when the Credit Union is closed, and assume that we will be able to refinance the deal next week.  Your negotiation power is lost once the deal is funded by another institution.
bulletThe Credit Union Offers extended warranties for members and non-members.  Click here for additional information.

 

 

 

 
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