Most people are probably familiar with the typical car salesman based on the stereotypical image portrayed on TV and in the movies. They are often shown as sleazy men in horrible outdated suits that will do anything to close a deal. While they may carry a bad image it is more of the exception and not the norm.
Even though you may not be dealing with Slick Willy when you purchase your next vehicle it is important to remember that they are still in sales and it is their job to sell you something. Purchasing a vehicle is a big decision so it is to your advantage to know what to expect and how to deal with salespeople in order to make sure you are really getting the best deal and being treated fairly. A few tips to consider:
1. Be Prepared. The best thing you can do is to go into the vehicle buying situation with information. Make sure you clearly understand what type of vehicle you want and what features you need. Are you looking for a new car or used? If you are considering used make sure you understand that they will try to offer you many add-ons such as extended warranties, roadside assistance or a number of other services and determine what, if any of those you may be interested in.
2. Don’t Provide More Information About Yourself Than You Have To. People in sales are trained to learn about a customer in order to tailor their sales tactics. So the best thing you can do is provide the least amount of information about you and your situation as possible. Maybe you just totaled your car and need to get a new car this very same day, don’t let them know that. They don’t need to know if you plan on buying a car today, this week or next week. If they sense urgency they will immediately realize they have some additional bargaining power.
3. Use the Buddy System. When shopping for a vehicle don’t go alone. If you are married you will likely take your spouse anyway but even if you are single it can be worth it to bring a friend or two or even a relative with you. People are more vulnerable under high-pressure when alone so having others there with you can reduce the chances you rush into a decision. This can also help to ensure the salesperson is completely forthright.
4. Understand the Salesperson’s Motives. If you are using the phone to call around with questions during your preliminary shopping it is the salesman’s job to get you into the showroom. They may lure you in with specials or deals that may or may not exist so it is up to you to do your due diligence beforehand and strictly get the facts you are looking for. Once you are in the showroom it is their job to send you home with a vehicle. Not only do they want to put you behind the wheel of a car they want to entice you to upgrade or at least pay as much as possible for the car you are interested in. Make sure you know exactly what you want and stick to it.
5. Whoever Speaks Next, Loses. When negotiating it is important remain calm and to avoid rushing into decisions. When the dealer presents you with an additional feature or service simply take a moment to pause and think about it. They will present it to you in a way that sounds as if you must have it, but if you don’t immediately respond they will have to come back to you with a question or more information. They want you to make quick decisions, but instead lead them into providing more information. Even if you know the answer is “no” immediately give it some time or ask further explanation. A quick negative response will only lead to a barrage of further sales tactics.
6. Be Nice. Let’s face it, people enjoy speaking with and dealing with others who are polite and respectful. If you come into the dealership with an abrasive attitude you won’t get very far with a salesperson. If you are polite and treat them with respect you will likely see them return the favor. This alone won’t stop you buying something you don’t need but it will make the negotiations go much more smoothly.
7. Don’t Show Enthusiasm. People in sales would kill to have a customer who is excited and enthusiastic about an upcoming purchase. This behavior puts dollar signs in their eyes and this excitement can blind you to reality. Maybe you just found a car you’ve been looking for, it has every feature you wanted, it is the right color and the price is right. Don’t sit there with a big grin on your face or jump with excitement, but simply ask for more information about the vehicle and even continue to look at other vehicles even if you know that is the one you want.
8. Keep Your Trade-In a Secret Until a Final Price is Set. If you are planning on trading in your old car to help with the purchase of this new vehicle make sure you don’t let the cat out of the bag until the end. The salesperson will certainly ask if you will be trading in but you don’t have to tell them yes or no, maybe you are considering it. Either way, if they know you will be trading in they will use this to their advantage in the negotiation which will undoubtedly become more confusing and potentially cost you some money in the process.
Once they know you have a vehicle to trade they will try to get one of their appraisers to go check it out immediately while you continue to negotiate the purchase. Once they come back the pressure is on you to go through with the sale since they have already done the work. So, come up with a bottom-line figure for the price of the car first, and then determine what trading in your old car will do to the bottom line, not the other way around.
9. Seek Financing Before Shopping. This doesn’t mean you need to have a loan already secured and ready to go, but check with your bank or credit union and see what type of rates are available to you and whether or not you would be approved for a loan in the estimated amount that you expect to need. You may want to consider checking your credit and clue report as well. Remember, most dealerships and salespeople don’t make much if any money on the price of the vehicle. Most of their commission comes from the in-house financing and extras sold with the vehicle. If you can find a better rate and terms with another lender before going to the negotiation table you can omit that discussion almost entirely.
10. You Have the Upper Hand. The most important thing to remember is that you have the upper hand. You are the consumer and you have a vast number of car buying options available to you. Don’t be fooled into letting the dealership make you feel that you need to rush into something or that you need to deal with them specifically. While car buying may not be the most pleasant way to spend your weekend you have to keep in mind that it is an important decision and if one dealer is difficult to work with or won’t accommodate your needs you can simply walk away.
There are lots of mistakes you can make when buying a car, don’t let dealing with the car salesperson be one of them.
Be to check some of these out some of my other articles on cars as well before you purchase a care
Author: Jeremy Vohwinkle
My name is Jeremy Vohwinkle, and I’ve spent a number of years working in the finance industry providing financial advice to regular investors and those participating in employer-sponsored retirement plans.
As a salesman at a Honda dealer, The most effective thing i have ever seen to get you a better price was done by a young husband and wife. They really wanted a CR-V. So to get the best price on one, they went to a Toyota dealership and negotiated on a Rav-4 for a while and talked the salesperson into letting them borrow the vehicle for the day. Instead of borrowing to test and get to know the Rav-4, they drove down the street to see me with the vehicle. The knew the deal they were getting on the Rav-4 and knew where they needed to be on the CR-V. "Beat this deal and I will purchase the CR-V instead of going back down the street and buying THIS Rav-4." knowing she was buying withing in the next hour or so forced us to bend over backwards and give the car away. They bought the CR-V and promtly returned the Rav-4 afterwards.
That being said, I made ZERO dollars on this deal. As a salesman with a stay at home wife and a 4 year old daughter, please go easy on us. We have families to feed too.
@MmikeyWongmuang, you are crazy! I would never in a million years give you my personal address or a copy of my driver's license.. That just makes me cringe. Why on earth would you want or need that information? To be a creeper? hahaha No thanks! If you have a issue with your salesman or the deal you received, go and speak to the sales manager, or the GM. weirdo lol
I first visited this site.I have read this blog, I have been told that there is mostly good points which are adding the importance of blog. Nice work, Keep to write more good news.
Best thing to do is this:
Walk in casually dressed. Smile and tell the person you will get back with them. As they saunder back over to you, tell them, you are still checking out the car.
When you are ready to talk to them, tell them what you want. That's it. They will go into their speal about what you really want, what you really need, and what you look good in. Tell them it's all baloney and you can't be taken. This is your budget, this the car you want.
But wait. Tell them you will think about it. Go home and get some sleep. Do you really want that car? Can you come up with at least half the cash so you won't have to sell your arm, leg and child per month with the car payments? If you can answer these questions, then you are ready to go back to make a deal.
If the person says he only wants so much down, insist that you will give him half of what the car is. Before doing that, tell the person this is what you want to pay for the car. Say the vehicle is 11 grand. You say, no way buddy. You want to pay $7,000. You have $3,000 cash on you now bud. So make me a deal.
He will go into the office and confer with his superiors. They will talk about you as you have them over a barrel and they won't believe how smart you are. They will come back out to negotiate with you. Oh boy, here's where the fun begins. Tell them here is your $3,000.00, I want $150.00 a month payments and that's it. Now you have them by the balls. They will finish the contract -- you will have won, and you pay instead of $150.00 a month, $300.00 a month and get the vehicle paid off early.
Your credit will be A+ and you will be happy.
This chick found out how to handle these men. Oh yeah, baby. Take it from me it works.
Now if I can get a job, this advice would be great...
Secondly, Most salesman do not make any money off the financing of your vehicle. No clue where he got his info from, but he might want to go check his sources. As a car salesman I get absolutely nothing from you financing your vehicle with me. I get most of my money off the total number of sales I make each month. I get bonuses if I sell X amount. Now some dealerships make a killing off individual car sales, but those are generally on at dealerships that are closer in the city and take advantage of commuters that won't go very far from home.
Understand this that in today's economy most salesmen are struggling like you are. In this day and age there are dealerships everywhere so you don't have to be stuck buying from the same one. Meaning that we have to compete against each other.
Best advice I can personally give you is to decide 4 things before you go out.
First go online and pick the car out that you like. Or if you have a friend that has one just ask them. Or maybe if you see someone, just ask them about their vehicle. If they love it they will tell you why. If they hate it they will tell you why. Go online and do some research about the cars. Most websites will let you compare features side by side the other cars in a "virtual showroom". Don't go to the manufacture's website. They pick and choose the information that works better for their agenda.
Go test drive the top three models you like. Tell the salesman that you are not buying today. This is crutial for you. You can give him information on how to contact you if you would like, but always be looking for the door. Salesmen are trained to keep you there. If you are there you might be talked to buying.
Once you have picked out the manufacture and the car, next it's time to pick the price. This is highly important. Send out a request from the manufacture's website about the car you are looking for. You will then have the dealerships competing for your business. This is haggling without the burden of you having to make a decision then. Tell them their competitors prices and throw ins. This is crucial. Don't hold back information. Get all the quotes in writing or email with a complete list of what the car has inside. The model, package, and add ons. Then tell the competing dealerships what price they have to beat. Becareful with trying to get the price you "think" you saw. Some prices that are online don't have all the actual prices included. Also, keep in mind that dealerships are a business. With that being said you want them to make money. You can't go in Walmart and tell the clerk you are only going to pay $1.50 for the box of Wheeties that is $2.50.
Once you have the best price, should take a few days, then call the dealership and speak to the General Manager, NOT THE SALES MANAGER. Reason for this the GM won't lie to you. Most dealerships go through Sales Managers like my sister went through high school with boyfriends. Ask the salesman you have been conversing with how long the Sales Manager has been at that dealership. If he says a long time then there is a good chance you have found the best place. Dealerships that go through a bunch of sales managers could be a great thing, they want to sell you the car to keep their job, or they will tell you what ever you want to hear to get you to buy. Get the deal on the exact car you are buying. Have it in writing with all FEES and taxes. So that way when you arrive you will do your test drive of your vehicle, then the negotiating is already done.
In a hurry to write this, but I hope it helps. Car buying should be fun and exciting. Don't just show up without a game plan. Have the price, dealership, and salesman picked out before you even attempt to purchase. This will save you time, money, and stress.
happy hunting and God Bless!
As a salesman I have to tell you this is complete garbage. Listen. We ask questions to tailor the vehicle around your needs. How can this be wrong. Instead of having a pushy salesman try to show you something you don't need, how about if he works for you and helps you decide on what car is best for you. We get to understand you by asking questions. If you don't want to answer them then you are not only wasting his time, but more importantly you are wasting your time. Why would you come to a car lot if you already know everything there is to know about the cars? Let me do my job by showing you the benefits to you of each vehicle. Most salesmen get paid the same regardless of vehicle so to us it doesn't matter we just want to make sure you make the best decision for yourself and your family.
That was a funny comment above. The article is right on how salesman are. In reality without us car buying on your part is a huge headache. The car business does me well. I service a customers need and the money will follow. If you never been in the car business, we "Crooked" people make our money in hitting unit bonuses. Mark up in new cars is a thin line and with edmunds and other car buying advice it is hard to make money. On the other hand used vehicles is where we pay our bills. If i buy a car as an independent person for 200 bucks and it is worth 10 grand you think i am going to sell it to you for $200? If we make money and the customer is happy and can keep some kind of equilty then we did our job. Now some people of course we are going to make alot of profit others you dont. Depends on the situation. Dont judge a profession over cheasy movies and OLD selling techniques used in the 80s. welcome to the new century we are making a living and if you dont like it well enjoy your craigslist vehicle.
Oh waaahhh all these POOR car salesmen with starving families. Sales people are paid to SELL. The higher they sell a product for the more profit they take home. It's pretty simple. I think it's safe to say that unless you are buying from a no-haggle dealership like Scion then the person trying to sell you that car is NOT looking out for your best interest. I’ve educated myself before making a purchase and have saved a lot in the process. Being educated about the purchasing process really let’s you understand exactly how crooked these guys are. Sorry guys, if you don't like being labeled get a different job.
Ive been selling new cars for two years now.. Ive been part time working my butt off to become a career firefighter. Well Im sorry I cant afford working an ambulance, where I'd be making minimum wage. Who can afford a family with that? So Im selling Cars.
Telling us to get other jobs is BS. what Jobs?!
The wrap we get, Its bullshit. If you're not a serious buyer. Dont waste our time and money ( test driving and missing the opportunity for us to sell a car to a serious buyer whose already done research and is ready to take the next step). We work on commission, we dont get paid hourly. Be nice, polite respectful and UPFRONT! Because I am. If you walk onto my lot and I "up" you, and you're a complete bitch or jerk ill call you out, and tell you to get lost. If you approach me kindly, rather than having your guard so high up your ass. Ill do everything i can, to give you what you asked for.
Just remember asking salesman for the best price over the phone or on the lot is getting you nowhere quick. Ask to speak to the manager. Also do remember its a business.
My favorite is the "I have someone coming in from (a city near you) this weekend to come look at it for the price I want." Okay....
1) If they're gonna pay what you want, you wouldn't be messing with me and my offer
2) They're gonna drive down from the city to look at a really nice-looking car that I saw on Craigslist. Shit, if the car looked like it did on Craigslist, I WOULD have paid that price.
Then, as soon as I left the dealership, I get a call back with a "I just called my boss" deal.
Moral of the story: The best way to win a fight with a Car Salesman is to WALK AWAY. They think they have you in their hands-watch how fast the terms change when you say "Sorry, just can't do it". Give it a try...
Shawn May 26, 2010
"4) I’ve been making 6 figures a year off of people who make these lists and “know how to negociate” for 10 years now.. The bottom line is that the salesman will always win, and you will never get as good of a deal as you think you did. It’s my job to make you feel like you got a great deal. Remember that :) .."
What a crock of $hit. I've gotten great deals on the last 3 cars I purchased. Kelly's and Edmunds told me so.
As far as I'm concerned, the longer it takes to get what I want, the better it is going to have to be for ME, not the smart a$$ who thinks they are playing me like a fiddle and can keep me there until I break. Ain't gonna happen!
I didn't tell the last salesman I had a trade-in or that I could get much better financing through my credit union. I also traded in that beater that was ready to have the brakes, cat converter and clutch replaced. All this on a Sunday eve (at closing time-at the end of the month) so EVERYONE THERE had to wait for JoeBlow salesman to finish up before they could leave.
I pissed off one dealer so badly he refused to service my new car. ALL BECAUSE I KNEW WHAT THE HELL HE WAS UP TO and got a good deal ANYWAY.
Thats ok. He can 'punish me' for knowing what I'm doing. I found another dealer to service the car who wasn't as far away!
Treat me like a jerk and you'll get it RIGHT BACK AT YA!
I eat salesmen for breakfast wehn I buy a new car. I'm buying a Honda Pilot (2011) this week and I've already jewed him down from the MSRP of $36,500 to 30,500. No money down no trade-in. little does he know there's a big old trade-in flying his way to slap him in the fat, greedy face. MUUUWWAHAHHAHAHAHAH!!!
People are so funny..
1) I don't care if you're paying with cash or financing, so holding that information back from me means nothing at all and won't have any impact on price.
2) Not disclosing a trade in just wastes everyones time. The price of the car won't shift based on
your trade in, the only reason we care about the trade in is because we want to know just how upsidedown you are on you 97" Honda accord that you paid 29% apr on and still owe 15000 yet expect to get a lower payment on a new car.
3) Follow all the steps you want, it comes down to how well the managers do their jobs buying vehicles at a low price at auctions, not how well you think you can negociate. Ever vehicle on my lot is owned at least 5,000 back of book, which means I can still give you a good deal and make $1,000-$3,000 on every deal I do.
4) I've been making 6 figures a year off of people who make these lists and "know how to negociate" for 10 years now.. The bottom line is that the salesman will always win, and you will never get as good of a deal as you think you did. It's my job to make you feel like you got a great deal. Remember that :)..
Thanks for putting my children through college, thanks for the rolex collection, thanks for the houses I own, thanks for giving me the opportunity to make $250,000+ a year with a GED.
Keep making these lists!
A good purchase would mean a quality car at the best affordable price. But, looking at the other aspects of buying an auto through an online process can be deceiving at times, for example, the photos of the car on the internet may not be a true representation of the car.
I'm considering purchasing a new vehicle, and I have no idea how much you can negotiate down from the MSRP. Any advice on that? I will be paying in cash with no trade in.
People need to realize that we are no different than anyonelse. We have families and lives too. We werent built by the auto industries to screw people over. We just want to survive and what is it with people thinking that we have like $10,000 to play with? Bullshit!!! I have vehicles on the lot that don't even have $1,500 worth of mark up in them. Another thing is, quick freaking relying on the internet (edmund's) for everything. Edmund's has been wrong so many times, and what makes you think they know exactly what our invoices are? They don't, they don't know shit so quit believing everything you read. Also if you're nice I'll be glad to go the extra mile to help you out but don't piss me off because then I won't do shit to help you get a good deal. I don't make a pennie until i sell something so I will do everything in my power to get the deal you want so I can go home with a paycheck as long as you're not rude and ALOT of times, the only reason why some salespeople are pushy is because they get bitched at by their managers for not getting you inside. So the next time a saleman asks you to come inside, just simply go inside, talk to the manager and tell them your not buying anything. It's as simple as that. Oh and trust me the customer will lie to us more than we EVER thought about lieing to them. "no we don't have a trade in","no we don't owe anything on our trade"," I want to be at $250,00 a month" YEA AND I WANT A DAMN FERARRI TOO!!. Customers lie about everything especially when they say "YEA WE WILL BE BACK TO TALK TO YOU SOME MORE. I'LL COME IN TOMORROW"..BULL FREAKING SHIT..do you come back? no you don't, because customers lie allll the time. The next time you go to buy a car, sit back and count how many times you lied to that salesman when you leave. I bet it's waaaay more than he ever thought about lieing to you, and thats amnother reason why we're pushy. Of course we want you to buy that day because if you don't then chances are...YOU'RE NOT COMING BACK!!. Now, I understand that salesman have earned their reputation, but times have changed and people realy need to start treating salespeople better. Do you go in wal-mart and ask them to discount their cheese? No you don't, so don't ask me do give you a $8,000 discount because it's not happening. One more thing. All you people that just loooove these foreign cars and think that thay are sooo amazing, why don't you just go live in japan if their cars are so good. Have you ever seen a 30 year old honda or toyota? I know I haven't. Yes I have a gmc truck and NO it wasnt made in japan like everyone thinks. Its made her in the USA and in canada. So the next time your pulling into that god damn foreign car lot, just remember, your the reason why the economy is bad, because you keep sending your damn money over seas. SUPPORT AMERICA!!! BUY AMERICAN!!!BECAUSE THE JOB YOU SAVE JUST MIGHT BE YOUR OWN!!!!!!!...ok I'm done now.
If you all knew it that us Car Salesman make $100 bucks on a new car and 25% profit from used cars which with this economy we have to drop our pants to sell something you would think twice about saying that we just want your money, No I just want to pay rent.
Try to use the "out the door" price as the cost you negotiate on. It does wonders to the "documentation fees" and other charges they try to add on. I even had a salesman ask me "who negotiates on the out the door price?"
Make sure you have fun with their mind games. When the salesperson goes to talk to their "boss" about the first offer you made and takes longer than 3-5 minutes, get up and go out to the parking lot and start looking at some other cars.
Probably #9 is the best advice of all. Nothing puts the sales rep on the defensive like having your own financing. After our deal was 'as good as it was going to get', including price and interest rate, I announced that I would instead use financing I found online. Suddenly, the dealer was able to lower the cost AND offer reduced 'manufacturer promotional' APRs. You have to take anything - anything - they say with a grain of salt.
I don't even mess with it anymore. When I purchased a tahoe for my wife a few years ago, we visited all the dealerships that carried potential SUV's that she might like. We told each dealership we were just looking and not buying today right up front. Then after about a week of looking we found her top three.
I then went online and checked consumer reports, safety ratings etc. Then I went and priced the exact vehicle with options that she wanted. Then I called the fleet manager (they usually handle internet sales also) at my local chevy dealership. I told him what I wanted and where I found it for the best price.
He said no problem and had that exact car I found delivered to his lot. I went down, we looked it over, test drove it and bought it for exactly what we expected to pay.
The internet has sure made things easier than they used to be.
UPDATE-More dealer horse crap.
Saw a car I liked on Auto Trader. Drove out to the dealer and was told it was sold two days earlier. Of course it was! Wonder WHEN they will get around to removing it from their website....
Of course at least 3 salesmen swarmed me like flies around an over ripe banana! I did NOT answer any of their questions querying me about if I was interested in leasing, want another year, etc.
MORAL: Call first, BEFORE driving to a dealer to see a car you saw on the internet.
If you don't want them to know who you are then first dial *67 BEFORE you dial the dealers phone no. This prevents them from being able to capture your phone no. Use the local number instead the toll free one. If you dial 800. It will snag any and all numbers anyway. ;)
Pretty good info. I've been in sales for a year and if all of my customers came in prepared I'd be ecstatic. Nakes it much easier on me. Also wanted to say that not telling the salesperson anything is a bad idea. Don't release too much but do let them know what you are looking for. They know what they have in stock better than you. Being too guarded could cause you to kiss out on the car you want. Otherwise great article.
I like number 10 the most, because especially in this economy, you do have the upper hand. I've had a car salesman try and tell me that car prices are stabilizing because the economy is getting better! Well hooray, except people are still unemployed, health insurance rates are still skyrocketing, and the banks are underfunded.
You can try asking salesmen questions too like, "How many cars have you guys sold this month/week?" And also, "How many cars have you sold personally?" These questions alone will make the salesman realize that you're not to be messed with.
To "Chris", date June 28, 08...YOU, and sales persons like you are the VERY REASON we, as "ups" come in, and leave your lots with "I have to think about this"...what we're really trying to tell you, politely is "I didn't like the vibe I just got from you...I'm excusing myself from this situation". Even if that were not the case, any prudent consumer knows that this is the 2nd largest purchase you make as an individual...a house is no. 1, and a car is no. 2...why would ANY consumer sign on the dotted line, right there and then without "thinking" about such a large purchase? Would you, as a salesman be so quick to do the same with your hard earned money? I think not..unless you are naive...It's that attitude of yours and arrogance that will keep your deals coming up short every month. I hope salesmen like you end up frustrated by "stupid" people like me, and QUIT!!!!
You car salesmen with the hurt feelings make me laugh. The car business has been dirty for many years and you chose to make your living that way, the very name car "dealer" begs everyone to negotiate with you. You don't advertise a product and push features that would appeal to a buyer- insted it's always some baloney about buying for less than you paid for it or a lie about the real price. Sure, a lot of potential buyers are just as bad- but you guys have trained us to not believe you. When I buy a vehicle I look for who I want to buy from. I can pick out a guy trying to earn a living who is straight with me, and he gets the business. So, the way I see it you have to prove yourself to me first and stop with the "I want to earn your business" crap, earn my respect first.
You folks have this all wrong. I am an American working in Asia the past 3 years. Here, in addition to your normal salary, you can negotiate to have the company provide a car and driver.
My previous car was a BMW 5 series. Didn't pay for a thing- no insurance, no gasoline, no maintenance, no car payment, no tolls. Nada. I changed jobs and now have a new Honda Accord 2.4 Navi, it's a nice car. After this I can never go back to the American model. It just sucks.
Look at your counterparts in Europe and Asia. Their company pays for their car as part of the allowances. Better write to Obama on this!!!
Re: "The attorney general was clueless as well. "
I won't bother complaining to the attorney general again because they are probably sleeping with the auto industry. Here is what the AG had to say regarding personal info/doc fees
"The Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) organizes its records by using Social Security (SSN) numbers of (state) drivers or vehicle owners for quick retrieval. The dealer requires your SSN in order to submit material to the BMV so that they can provide a title; this is required by the BMV. The document fee that your dealer collects is for the purpose of protecting the security of your information when applying for your title."
Protecting the 'security' of my information? HORSE CRAP. The last time I purchased a car from this dealership, I went to the DMV, left my name and SS# on a piece of paper with them. The manager of the DMV said she would add it to the paperwork that the dealership would be adding.
I.D. theft is the number one reported crime to the FTC for the past SEVEN YEARS. Don't be careless with this kind of info and double/triple check to be sure that those who are entrusted to look out for consumer interests might be biased when it comes to powerful automobile lobbies.....
I paid $20.00 for a pdf from an ex-car salesman/GM. The info was worth FAR MORE.
2004 Peter M. Humleker Jr.
Ex-General Manager of a car dealer
Here's an example from the info.
The documentation fee is a fee that dealers charge people on every vehicle purchased. It is a charge for doing the department of motor vehicle paperwork. In other words it's just pure profit for the dealerships. The doc fee can range from $35 to $200 depending on which state you live in.
The best way to avoid this is to pay cash for the car and tell the dealership you will do the motor vehicle paperwork yourself. Go to www.eloan.com get approved for a loan and give the dealership a cashier check to pay for the vehicle. Tell the dealership you won't pay the doc fee because you are going to do the paperwork directly with the department of motor vehicle."
Do yourself a favor and do NOT talk to a salesman first. Do your shopping on the internet. I test drove a Toyota at a dealership and have had nothing but problems with the salesman since. I was polite but firm about what I wanted. He agreed to everything I asked for but refused to give me a completed 'buyers agreement'.
Beware of salesmen that make promises they have NO intentions of keeping. We went to the dealership no less than three times (2 hrs each time) trying to get our deal to pass.
They also demanded our SS# even though we were paying CASH. Why? Because with our drivers' licence, D.O.B. AND SS#, one has ALL the info they need to steal your identity! God knows car salesman can be trusted right?!
I never gave them the last bit of info and walked out. The salesman made repeated calls to try and get me to come back and 'play' (waste my time) yet a 4th time. NO WAY. I will be complaining to Toyota Corp. and reporting my experience with the Attorney General, BBB.
You will save yourself a HUGE hassle if you: buy over the internet, get them to FAX you the buyer's agreement so they can't wear you down with other crap and then transfer the plates yourself.
The attorney general was clueless as well. Read about arbitration. That is another nasty business that does the buyer ZERO good.
Suckers Wanted: How Car Dealers and Other Businesses are Taking Away Your Right to Sue
By Stephanie Mencimer
November 26, 2007
I am a CarSalesman and I don't appreciate the stereo-typing that we're dirtbags. I am a single father and just trying to make a living. My dealership is very fair to my customers and i get cards and letters sent to my dealership and my managers from my customers saying they are very satisfied with me. I enjoy meeting people and i am very honest with people. I treat my customers as if they were my friends....(after they spend some time with me and make a purchase,they usally are my friends) I really love my job and I love helping people. Please stop going to dealerships with the notion that we are out to hurt you...we're not. McCafferty Auto Group Hyundai/Suzuki/Ford/Kia Langhorne,PA.
215-945-8054 ext. 7110
Come see me and I'll prove it to you....I Promise. Did I mention to you that I love cars!!! LOL
Most dealerships won't even begin to negotiate on a price without the trade-in being appraised, so that tip is bunk. Also, it is helpful to provide information such as what you need the vehicle for and your credit situation as no doubt, the dealer will find out eventually.
The most important tip here is to be polite and respectful. I personally have thrown people out who have been rude, disrespectful, and/or refused to even give their name. Oddly enough, it's mostly old people, the early baby-boomers and the ones right before them, truly a sad and disgraceful bunch.
Also, don't even bother trying to lie, we can see right through 99% of our customers. People don't realize how many times we hear the same BS over and over again.
After getting the vehicle from the dealer for nothing what do you people say when the salesperson from the dealership walks into your place of business? For example if you own or work at a restaurant will you give us sales people a steak and lobster dinner for cost? Or can I see the invoice on what you paid for the lobster? Also don't expect a tip because we just worked for nothing for you at the car lot, so I figure you'll return the favor and work for nothing for me.
Now as far as the warranties go I hope no one buys them when getting used vehicles because I get the new car sale when your engine blows and you don't want to fork out the $4,000 for a new one. Personally I get no greater satisfaction then the look on your face when the service guy tells you the cost to fix your car. "Should have taken the warranty hey jackass, oh is that a tear? Good thing you read all those negative articles before you came in to buy your car otherwise you might have been tricked into buying that extended warranty" Think of the warranty as insurance(but way cheaper)I pay $1800 a year for full coverage and have never made a claim but if I did need it sometime I'll be very happy I have it.
Now for the Fun town auto: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ia55JCo3WII
You also need to make a list of the features you need and write down how much you are willing to spend, then stick to that no matter what. It is also a good idea to prepare a list of questions regarding warranties and insurance before you go to the dealer.
Ex-salesman tip for customers.
If you did all your "homework" and the salesman does everything you want him to do, ie. right car, right price, right payment, everthing to your standards....buy the vehicle! What else do you want him to do?
There is nothing worse for a salesman to hear, "I love everything about the car, everything about the deal.....but I have to think about it." Wait a second you just told me everything was to your standards, but you have to think about it? Are you stupid?
People crack me up. Y'all want retail for the trade and wholesale for the new car. Find the car you like, find a sales person you like, buy the car. It is very easy. If you hold the trade till the end you will more than likely get hosed even more. Be up front and tell him what you are wanting to do. Also tell him about payments. Most people think you can get a $300 payment on a $22,000 car but you can not do it.
Salesmen see all types of people on their lot and the one common thing is that all buyers are liars I`ll be back, I have good credit, I make enough money to afford this car. On the rare occasion that a person is upfront and honest with me he gets a better deal, quicker and without all the hassles that a lie dictates. Not all car sales people are bad guys. We work on commission so get real and tell us what you want and a good guy will try his best to get it for you or we dont earn a thing.Educate yourself about the price of the new car and your trade. Know your credit score. Bad credit? You will have to pay more because you are a greater risk.Most of all dont waste my time if you dont want to buy or I might come to where you work and waste your time.
I agree i think number 9 is very improtant. It is somthing you need to know to get a good car at a good price. It may depend on a used car that may have problems and may not be great for you so i agree with Dan.
I am a finance manager at a GM store. I have to disagree with #9 based on the fact that we have better interest rates on our certified pre-owned vehicles than you could ever get at a credit union. I like an informed buyer, the more educated the customer is the more pleasant the transaction can be for everyone. The guy who wrote this article stated that salesmen make more money when the customer finances but that is completely false. Most dealers pay the F&I manager separate from the salesman so everyone has initiative to make money for the dealership.
I do agree with #6. You can be a hardnosed customer while being nice at the same time. Acting like a jerk will not only make the experience worse for everyone involved, it will also reduce the quality of "service after the sale" greatly.
Great stuff! If you do decide to trade in your car, get the Black Book value of your car! Its what most dealerships use.
Better yet, ask to see the sales managers Black Book, if he says they don't use it, get up and leave.
I really like tip #6 about being nice.
I have sold Chrysler Jeep Dodge's since 2001. I am a family guy with a wife and 2 young sons. I am a member of the local church and do alot to support the local community. I don't deserve to be treated like the scum of the earth, and just like the article says, people don't get far with me when they do. Like my grand mother always said, its better to treat with sugar than vinegar. It's very true. I will work twice as hard to get you a great deal on the car when I am treated with respect. I will try to burn you as much as I can when I am cursed at, and treated like a dog. It is human nature!
Treat your saleman with respect. If you run into a salesman that doesn't deserve any respect because he doens't give you any, then ask for another salesman, or leave and go to another lot. There are bad guys out there for sure, but I'd say the majority of us are pretty good guys.
Lets face the facts. Everybody knows that we are on commission. The more money we make the dealership, the more money we make for ourselves. The dealer is going to make money, they can't stay in business if they don't. This website will help you make sure they don't make enough to take their family on vacation to Disneyworld for a week, but still make enough to take the family to Mcdonalds for a meal.
It is people that write stuff like this that give slaesmen a hard time. The numbers do not lie. We learned this basic math in the second grade. If you are smart enough to type out the numbers on a calculator and let it do the math for you you will realize what you are suppose to pay for a car. If you got a car for $150 a month then you were suppose to get a car for $150 a month. Dealerships are not in business to lose money and salesmen are only trying to make a living like the next guy or girl. The internet is full of helpfull information that will help you purchase a car the right way. What I just read above is not it. If you are going to be smart use KBB or some tool such as that to purchase a car. It truly is about MATH101.
LOL It is people like you that make things harder then it is. We get paid the same, mostly. We are not the crooks. And yes I am looking out for your best interest. Reason is this is my career. I live on my referrals. My customers have bought from me for years and I go out of my way to help them any way I can. I go to bat for my customers. If you have not had that experience then you just have been a good consumer. You were a sucker. Since you mentioned Scion I can already tell you were a sucker. Sorry, I don't like to call names, but there are much better cars out there. Just pick up a magazine sometime.
Wow, Rick 12/28/09...I hope in the time since you wrote this comment you found a job that's a little less stressful. Whoa....
You are the reason I will not negotiate with the neanderthals at a dealership. Internet pricing and then work with a manager. END OF STORY.