CAR BUYING MADE EASY:
Tips for Informed & Prepared Car Purchasing
Most people find the car buying process an intimidating experience. You can be kept for hours on a dealership lot, shuffled from a sales person to a sales manager and back again before a final deal is struck. On top of that there’s the finance department with all its paperwork and figures and required signatures.
It’s a challenging process for even the most experienced “car guy.” For most women, however, purchasing a car can be even more daunting. Many women already feel at a disadvantage the minute they walk on a car dealer’s lot. Add in the intimidating environment of an automobile dealer showroom and sales people, and you have the makings of a no-win situation for the female buyer.
However, author J.L. Tatum, a former automobile dealership owner, has written Coming Back Strong, a multimedia resource. This resource includes a book, audio CDs and data CDs with information about car dealerships and how they work. This resource helps clarify the automobile shopping process.
“Buying a car is really intimidating for most people,” said Tatum, “but it doesn’t have to be. I was in the car business for more than 10 years. I know all of the little tricks the dealers use to get your money.”
Having the finance department add fees or additional warranties is one of the many ways dealers trick customers.
“The finance department is always looking for ways to add extra fees and charges to your deal,” said Tatum. “They are called add-ons, and might include such items as additional warranties or coverages that are not necessary. Those kinds of things can be especially appealing to women. They believe they are paying for added security. Unfortunately, that added security is very expensive and not always needed.”
The Coming Back Strong program teaches women to not be afraid to assert themselves when buying a car.
“Don’t be afraid to walk away from a deal,” Tatum said. “Be firm in the price you will pay. Tell the sales person you want to shop around. Chances are they will come back with a better offer; they don’t want you to leave because they know there is a 90 percent chance you will not return and they have lost a sale.”
Before making that next car buying trip, you want to do your homework. For example, decide what car is of interest to you and find out the dealer cost. This will help you establish what you want to pay for the car. Also, pull your own tri-merge credit report.
“The very first thing a dealer wants to do is run a credit report on you. That helps them structure a deal for you. However, if you allow eight or 10 dealers to do this, it can adversely affect your report, and those ‘dings’ stay there for as long as two years. Take along your own report and let them look at it once you have made your decision to buy,” said Tatum.
Tatum offers the following tips for car shopping:
- Take a calculator along to double-check the figures you are given. Never sign a deal until you have verified the numbers.
- Be willing to walk away from a deal and never fall in love with a car. Get your best price and let the dealership know that you are going to shop around. The dealership doesn’t want you to leave because there is a 90 percent chance that you won’t return. And the next dealership you visit will more than likely beat the previous dealer’s offer.
- Before you begin shopping, get a tri-merge credit report on yourself and take it with you when looking for cars. You don’t want to give permission to every car dealer you visit to access your credit report.
- Also before you begin shopping, decide on one or two cars you are interested in and find out the dealers’ cost.
The best consumer — male or female — is an informed consumer. Before shopping for your next car, be sure you are well armed for the challenge. You will walk away with a great deal and a satisfying car buying experience.
For more information visit Coming Back Strong.
Source: Coming Back Strong