Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Dreadful Art of Buying A Car

Dear One,
I'm so sorry, but sooner or later you'll probably have to do it.

Here's a good article about dealing with the process--Battle of  Wills. It tells us, "Expertise is really just another term for extra information." This article may give you just enough of the extra info you need for the winning edge. I especially like the part about having an exit strategy and knowing your negotiation limits.

What advice do you have to share about buying a car? I recommend the following:
  • Find a mechanic you trust to examine the car before you put any money on it.
  • NEVER co-sign for your kids cars or anyone else's. (I know all about the whining and nagging, but let THEM FIGURE IT OUT FOR THEMSELVES. If not, you've just started down the path named Major Mistake). 
  • You don't need a pricey hot new car. Leave the car/identity/self-esteem issues to the guys. People who love you don't care what you drive or they'd buy you a car themselves. 
  • Know yourself. Be honest. Are you a pushover for a suave salesman? Then take someone along with you who knows this and hates this about you; you need them to protect you from yourself! And be sure to listen to them! Agree on an exit signal ahead of time, like a final price or code word. When you reach that point, stand up and leave. Don't worry, the salesman will call you when he's ready to meet your price.
So check out this article. If you find others, or have some good advice of your own, please feel free to share it on the comment line below.


  1. I actually did just buy a new car. I do NOT like car salespeople - the honesty factor is quite squirrely indeed. I did have the blessing of having my own son who is a real mechanic along to assist me. But, I went to four different dealerships before closing a deal. I truly prayed asking the Lord if a particular deal/negotiation was not right for me to please close the door before I made a mistake. Two of the places it seemed to slam the door shut, one an hour before signing the papers! They all of sudden sold it before I could even make the trip to bring a bank check to them. I was in need of selling a motorcycle, too. The place I bought the car from actually traded for the motorcycle........salesman wanted it for himself! The other dealerships were not interested in a motorcycle trade. God saw to it that I was able to sell the bike, lower my cost, and even got a new car instead of a used one that I was looking at earlier.....even the color I wanted! God closed doors for me until I got to the right place! So.....best thing to do is PRAY....and trust God to guide you. (ReginaV)

  2. I went to Carmax, where there is no negotiations. I did a ton of research online before making a decision about the type of vehicle I wanted and appropriate prices for those vehicles. I made my list of qualities I was looking for (max price, max mileage, etc.) and I waited for the right vehicle to show up on Carmax's website. When it showed up, I went down that day and bought the vehicle. I too, find the car buying process distasteful and the thought of doing it by myself was horrifying. LOL Carmax made it easy. (Seriously not trying to advertise for Carmax; my first car was a Saturn and they did business the same way. Wish more car companies did too!)

  3. I recently almost got tricked into buying a car, sight unseen, because they told me they could bring one for me to look at from another dealership; I made the mistake of signing something which I thought was their offer of 0% interest but which was actually a purchase agreement. Only after they said, "Congratulations on your new car" did I realize I'd been duped. When they brought the new car, I found something I didn't like about it & barely got them to take it back. Lesson learned: never sign anything without knowing exactly what you're signing & never go car shopping alone!


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