Looking to buy a new car? Great!
Here are a few things that will help as you work toward this major purchase.
You will notice as you go to car dealerships that in every new car there is a sticker with information about what is included in that vehicle. This info sheet is called a "Maroni Sticker" it is against the law for a car to be on the lot without one. It is named after a US Senator, Almer Stillwell "Mike" Monroney, from Oklahoma. Maroni sponsored the Automobile Information Disclosure Act of 1958, which made this disclosure of vehicle information required by all law on new vehicles. This helps people from getting ripped off. Anyhow, the history aside this sticker gives the MSRP or Manufactures Suggested Retail Price. This is how much the dealership would love to sell the car for. This would give them quite a bit of gross profit. However this is not what you should pay for a car. As an educated consumer what you want to pay is the true market value. The true market value is what other people across th US are paying for that vehicle. Where to find it? Go to: http://www.edmunds.com/new-cars/ Find the year make and model of what you've decided to buy and print off the page. Don't forget to select the options that you want because this will affect the price. But once you have done this print it off and bring it with you car shopping.
When you get to the dealership you can expect a few things. First, you'll be greeted, welcomed to the dealership. The salesman will ask you some questions to try to determine the best fit for you and your budget. You will already know what you want so this step should be easy. Remember that the Salesman is pretty educated with his line of cars (At least he should be!) So don't be afraid to look at another vehicle that may actually be a better fit.
Okay, so you've gone to the dealership, the salesman has found the vehicle you want and you have test driven it. The salesman should ask you to buy it, (if he's any good) and then he'll take you inside to do things like evaluate your trade, find out your down payment and then you'll be presented with the price the dealer wants to sell you the car for. Now you can go back and forth and argue the numbers of you can make the process a whole lot easier on everybody, including yourself and present the page you printed off of Edmunds.com. Tell your salesman that you would like to pay the true market value for the car. He will be surprised you are so prepared and will present the info to his sales manager, who 9 times out of 10 will agree and the negotiations will be much less painful.
Then your trade will be factored in as well as a down payment (initial investment as they may call it) and you can go from there to finance to work out the details and at that point you can purchase Gap protection or extended warranties, etc.
But you can be assured if you do this that you will be paying a fair price for the car. Now if the car you end up falling in love with is not the one you that you had originally thought you wanted simply ask your salesman to take you to Edmunds.com to find the true market value to the vehicle you will be buying.