1. Get preapproved with us
We’re a not-for-profit financial institution. This means we offer lower rates and will make sure you get an auto loan that fits your monthly budget. You’ll walk into the dealership knowing exactly how much money you can spend, what your monthly payments will be, and what your interest rate will be.
2. Know how much you should pay
Consult online pricing guidelines, such as Edmunds or Kelley Blue Book, to get a good idea of what a fair price is for the car you’re looking at. Research the sell prices at dealerships and trusted online retailers.
3. Time your visit strategically
The end of the month is a great time to shop. That’s when dealerships will be trying to hit their sales quotas. Also, on a weekday when fewer people are shopping for cars. If no one’s been in, the sales staff is going to be hungry to make a deal. And the end of the year, when the dealer is trying to unload the previous year’s models to make way for the newer models is also a great time for a deal on a new car.
4. Stick to the price
Negotiate up from the dealer’s cost on the car, rather than down from the sticker price. And stick to the sale price of the car. Don’t get lured into discussing add-ons, extended warranties, or monthly payments. Once you’ve got a firm sales price, you can worry about those other things.
5. Don’t be afraid to walk away
Even if you love the car, you’re not going to be happy if you buy it at a price that you can’t afford. It will only end up adding stress to your life and you’ll grow to resent it.