Buying a car: 6 common mistakes people make

These are the top 6 car buying mistakes people can make.

Buying a car is a big deal and if you don’t do your homework correctly, you may buy a hole in your pocket. Some car sales people might be nice, but at the end of the day they need to make their sales, so it’s up you to BYOB (bring you own brain) when you’re going to buy a car. Don’t let those sales people fool you! Here are our top car-buying mistakes that you should avoid:

1. Not enough cross shopping is a big mistake. So don’t get stuck on one brand and put blinders on about others because of old perceptions. Cast a wide net when comparing models online. Otherwise, you might miss a good deal.

2. If you’re about to spend so much money on a product, you shouldn’t settle for just anything. Rather wait it out than settle for a car you didn’t really want.

3. A lot of people complain about car seats being uncomfortable etc. That is because they didn’t do a test drive. You should always make sure you test the car first before purchasing it.

4. One of the first questions salespeople ask is, “How much were you looking to spend per month? It’s to your benefit not to focus on that number because doing so can make the final price of the car a moving target. Adding a certain amount per month to get leather and more power sounds tempting, but it will add thousands to the bottom line.

5. Telling a salesperson right away that you intend to pay in cash might seem like a power play, but it’s not. Doing so tips them off that they will not be making any money on you in the loan department and this could make them less willing to negotiate the price of the car as they seek to maximise their profit.

6. You should always do your homework when it come to prices. Don’t just work with the price on the window sticker, as this will put you at a disadvantage. Go online and research the prices of vehicles you’re considering. Not just the manufacturer’s suggested retail price, but the invoice price, which is what the dealer pays for each car. Also look up consumer rebates, direct-to-dealer incentives and dealer hold-backs, which are a percentage of the invoice price that dealers sometimes get back from the manufacturer. It’s worth a try to bargain with a dealer, and then the dealer will know you are serious.