The Most Important Part When Buying A Car



I had what I thought was an​ interesting question sent in​ to​ me the other day and that is​ the topic of​ this article. The question asked was essentially; out of​ all of​ the car buying tips, the car deal negotiating tips, and out of​ all the do’s and don’t do’s when you are car shopping and ultimately buying, what is​ the single most important area to​ have under control as​ the buyer.

I had to​ preface my answer by saying that in​ order to​ get your best deal when buying a​ car, there are many pieces to​ the car buying puzzle. They are all individually important because when you put all the buying processes together they make up your deal. And all of​ these car buying puzzle pieces are what dealerships are all about. They each represent an​ opportunity to​ sell you something and therefore make a​ profit on that sale.

Having said that, this is​ a​ great question and you would probably get many different answers. But, since you asked and I have pondered… I’ll give you my thoughts.

I would have to​ say financing. You must take the time to​ do such things as:

Get and understand your credit report.

Shop around for your financing options and ultimately get yourself pre-approved so you will know the amount, the interest rate you qualify for, and the length of​ your loan.

If you don’t get your financing questions answered and in​ order, you can literally cost yourself thousands of​ dollars. So, while all of​ the other aspects of​ buying a​ car are indeed important, such as​ the price of​ the new car, what you get for your trade, and all of​ the research that goes into these areas; you can literally give it​ all back and much more in​ the dealer’s finance department.

“If I get all my financing lined up ahead of​ time, why would I even bother with the dealer’s finance department?”

A Good question; and there are a​ couple of​ aspects to​ the answer. First, once you know what you qualify for (a bird in​ hand), you can then give the dealer’s finance manager the opportunity to​ do even better for you. Secondly, even if​ you have no intention of​ using the dealer financing option, you’ll still have to​ have a​ seat in​ the finance office just to​ sign all the paperwork. Which means the finance person will do their best to​ “sell” you their financing package. So being prepared is​ the best answer.

If you have your financing in​ hand and know all your numbers ahead of​ time, you’ll be able to​ fend off the monthly payment approach by the car dealer’s sales person. Buying a​ car based on monthly payments is​ good for the dealer; bad for you.

Also, your financing homework becomes even more important if​ your credit is​ less than grade ‘A’. Be mindful that just the difference in​ just a​ couple of​ percentage points on your interest rate can represent over a​ thousand dollars to​ you during the life of​ your loan. And if​ your credit score leaves a​ little to​ be desired by potential lenders, you will probably see a​ wider range of​ qualifying quotes that you get back. So it​ is​ even more important that you get your car financing house in​ order before you head out to​ the dealership.

Certainly, financing is​ but one piece of​ the car buying puzzle. But, it’s a​ big piece. And you can rest assured it’s a​ big piece (for potential profit) for the dealer. Many people don’t realize that this is​ yet another area at​ the dealership that you can and should try to​ negotiate on the road to​ getting your best car deal.

If you have done your research and homework to​ give yourself the best possible chance on the front end of​ the car buying process (new car & trade-in), don’t give it​ all back on the back end of​ the deal (financing & insurance – F&I) by not knowing what your financing numbers and options are.





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