At The Dealer

Considering Trading In Your Car?

Make it the last point in your negotiation. Many times dealers have trade-in values figured in to the asking price of a vehicle, so they can give the appearance of giving you more money for your trade. Negotiate a fair price for the car you are interested in, then bring up the trade-in issue. Make sure you know the value of your trade-in. See our research page for more information on getting trade-in values. Understand that the dealer has every reason in the world to offer you less than your trade-in is worth.

Check the fine print before you sign!

Dealers have been known to slip in undercoating, window etching and other add-on items that line their pockets with pure profit. Take your time and read over EVERYTHING!

The Research

Car Buying Online Research

Summary: The internet has brought us an overload of information. It's a great resource for car buying but you can get lost in the sea of numbers. Check out the advice below for getting the most accurate pricing and buying information on new and used cars.

Researching your new vehicle is a daunting task in today's world. Once you have narrowed your next vehicle down to 2 or 3 choices it is time to research. Take out a sheet of paper for each vehicle and write down pros and cons for each one. Also on each sheet of paper list the attributes which are most important to you.

This list might include.

  • MPG - if you put a lot of miles on your car this factor could make a big dent in your wallet if you pick the wrong car.
  • Engine power - HP is a big factor for many people out there.
  • Price - nothing needs to be said about this one.
  • Interior space
  • Repair costs - consider the average costs to repair a fender-bender.
  • Insurance costs - this is often overlooked by buyers and can catch you by surprise.
  • Standard options.
  • Anything else which is a factor to you.

The idea is to custom tailor your list to meet your needs. If you don't care about engine power then leave it off your list.

Now how do you get the information which is on your list. Here is a list of excellent resources to use in your search.

Offline:

  • Consumer Reports Magazine
  • Auto Week magazine
  • Your local newspaper's auto section
  • Local dealers

Online:

After your research is done you should have a clear picture of which car is right for you. What do you say? Clear as mud? Well take a step back and if you have 2 vehicles which are comparable you will then have to resort to one of the following.

  • Go with your gut feeling. You know the one which says get the Porsche not the Yugo.
  • Ask your wife, husband or SO. (you might want to let them in on the decision a little earlier than this if they will be driving the car too.)
  • Flip a coin.
  • Ask your god for some divine intervention?

Good luck !