Is your car on its “last tire” and can’t be relied upon to get you where you need to go? Or maybe you’re just in the market for something new. Just as there are many reasons you may be searching for a new vehicle, there are equally as many ways to spend more than you have to. Consider these 5 car shopping secrets as you plan to hit the dealership:
- Plan for the end. Sales employees at dealerships are feeling the heat at the end of the month or quarter in order to hit quotas, meaning you’re more likely to end up on the winning side of negotiations. Try to have your research wrapped up and your auto loan pre-approval in-hand by the last few days of the month…and even better if that’s the end of March, June, September, or December.
- Do your homework. Make a list of your “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves” in a vehicle. Next, spend some time on websites like or ; these are great resources that allow you to research the pros/cons of vehicles as well as their safety features. These sites will also have market value information to inform how much the vehicle will likely cost. Other resources to price compare include or . Use as many free resources as possible to arm yourself with information!
- Don’t advertise your trade-in. The salesperson can use this information against you by not giving you the lowest rate for the vehicle in order to accommodate your trade-in. Negotiate your price down first, then mention you’re trading in a vehicle.
- Avoid the added protection options. Extended warranty and GAP options at the dealership are often overpriced. Pass on them during the car-buying process and get them through your credit union instead at a more competitive rate.
- Get pre-approved at your credit union instead of dealer financing. Don’t head to the dealership on impulse, come to Harrison first. to give you the car-buying power of cash. Not only will you be able to shop knowing exactly what you can afford without being financially strapped in the future, but you’ll also likely pay less for your car. Finance managers can take advantage of you by marking up the interest rate paid through dealer financing. Your credit union, on the other hand, will give you the most competitive interest rates available. Just a couple points difference in interest rate can save you hundreds of dollars in interest!
For a limited time, get a reduced interest rate when you finance or refinance an auto loan at Harrison, plus no payments for three months*. Our team is happy to guide you through the car-buying process and answer any questions you may have. Learn more about our current auto loan special and apply today!
*Interest will continue to accrue during skipped period.