9 Negotiating Tools for Getting the Best Price On Your Auto

Posted by Rebecca Prince on February 16, 2017


It’s so close you can taste it; you’re almost at the end of your auto buying journey!  Just one more step – negotiating the price at the dealership.

For most of us, this is our least favorite part of the car buying process.  Even though the sales person you’ve been talking to seems really awesome, there’s always that lingering fear that you’re going to end up paying way too much once it’s all over.

Fear not, friends!  We’ve got a few tips to help.  Here are nine strategies you can use to “wheel and deal,” so you can get the best price possible on your new vehicle.

1. Use the Buddy System

Impulse buys are NEVER a good idea – especially when it comes to buying a car!  Always take a friend or family member with you to the dealership.  They’ll help you keep a level head, and they can point out any negative parts of a deal.

2. Remember who’s Boss

Who’s the captain of your auto buying journey?  YOU!   That means you get to pick when, where, and how you negotiate.  If you prefer to communicate with the dealer by email, go for it!  It can actually give you a better position, since you’re not in their environment.

Bonus Tip – If you feel that you need to talk to the dealer face-to-face, take your time.  Bring snacks and a drink with you!  Getting the price you want is worth a little extra work.  You wouldn’t want to miss out on the savings you could get because you’re feeling a little “hangry.”

3. Be Prepared

Don’t approach the dealer blindly – have a price in mind!  Bring along a folder with notes you’ve taken and our Auto Buyers Guide.  This will show the sales team that you’ve done your homework!

4. Ask for the Sales Manager

When negotiating the price of your vehicle, your sales person will most likely have to get approval from their manager.  Save time by cutting out the middleman and ask to speak to their manager directly.

5. Never Fall for the First Offer

Let this be a lesson any time you get a chance to “wheel and deal.”  The first price offered is NEVER the best one!  Don’t hesitate to reject it.  If the sales person isn’t willing to work with you, get up and head to another dealer.

6. Don’t be Afraid to do a Little Acting

Normally, we don’t encourage being dramatic.  But… when it comes to haggling over the price of your auto, it might not hurt!  Try to appear shocked and surprised by a “ridiculous offer,” even if it’s not really unreasonable.

7. Give them the Silent Treatment

Hate awkward silence?  Your sales person does too!  Say something like: “I’m sorry, but you’ll have to do better than that.”  Then, keep quiet.  Odds are you’ll get a much more reasonable offer.

8. Be Willing to Give a Small Concession

Sometimes, you just can’t have it all!  Know what you’re willing to give up and save a small concession for the end of the negotiation process.  It’s helpful if the dealer feels like they’re winning something.

9. Don’t be Afraid to Walk Away

Don’t like the way things are going?  Just get up and leave.  It’s your most powerful weapon!  You might want a car really badly, but there are lots of dealers out there!  It’s much more productive to spend your time and energy with someone who is actually willing to work with you!

How DuGood Can Help

Buying a car is a big investment!  We want you to FEEL GOOD about the process and drive away in something that you really love.  Be sure check out our FREE Auto Buyers Guide.  If you’re not ready to jump behind the wheel just yet, it’s a great resource to help you get prepared.

Download the Guide.

Topics: Auto