The Smart Way to Buy a New Car

buying-a-carNext to buying a home, purchasing a new car is the second largest expense that most people will make in their lifetime. The average price to buy a new car in the United States today is $30,000. No matter how much money you make each month, $30,000 is a lot of money even with a well-planned credit union auto loan. An investment of this size makes it important for you to know the ins and outs of car buying and financing so you can know all of your options and find the deal that’s right for you.

Do Some Research
It pays to research the car make and model that you are most interested in to find out if it has all of the options and advantages you want and need. Check the Kelley Blue Book prices for the vehicle, whether you are looking to buy a new car or finance a used car, to make sure that it is priced right. Many dealers will add a price “cushion” to give them room to negotiate. The more you know before you go to the car lot of showroom will help you to get the best deal.

Learn How to Negotiate
Knowledge is power. The time you spent researching the vehicle you want to buy can help you when it comes time to negotiate on price. Studies show that man dealers are willing to bargain between 10 and 20 percent of their profit margin, which is the difference you’ll see between the MSRP from the car manufacturer and the sticker price you’ll see on the lot. Know how much you are willing to pay and don’t let yourself get talked into paying more.

Know the Vocabulary
There is a complete car selling lingo that is used by car salesmen and again, the more you know, the better you’ll do when it comes to negotiating price. The “invoice price” is the charge that the dealer pays to the manufacturer. This price tag is usually higher because the dealer get a list of discounts, incentive awards, discounts and rebates from the manufacturer that get deducted before it gets listed for sale.

The “base price” is the cost to buy a new car without any options other than the factory warranty and standard equipment and the “dealer sticker price” is the price that buyers usually see, including any dealer markup, undercoating, dealer preparation and other dealer-installed options.

Financing: How to Get a Credit Union Auto Loan
Unless you are able to purchase your car cash outright, you’ll need to get financing. Beware that in most cases, the financing that you get from a dealer won’t be the best deal you can get. You are better off visiting your New Bedford credit union to find out what options might be available to help you buy a new car or even to finance a used car.

One of the ways that car dealers mislead buyers is to focus on the monthly car payment and distract them from considering the entire purchase price and down payment required. The total amount that you will pay over the life of the loan will depend on the price of the car, the APR that you are given and the length of the loan.

Speak with a representative at your local credit union auto loan department to find out more about the options and incentives available associated with getting your car financed outside of the dealership. As a member of your New Bedford credit union, you have opportunities available to you, such as lower interest rates, that can work to your advantage.

Should You Trade-in or Sell Your Old Car?
If you have an older vehicle that you won’t need anymore after you get your new car, you might be thinking about trading it in or selling it privately. Before you go to the car dealer, spend some time researching the value of your old car. Check the Kelley Blue Book website and make sure to look at the different rates for “trade-in” versus “private seller” to see how they compare. Keep these figures in mind when you negotiate the trade of your old car and the purchase of your new car.

If you don’t get what you are know your car is worth on a trade-in and you don’t need it to drop the purchase price or improve the deal on your new vehicle, you might want to consider selling the car yourself. While it will take longer to sell it privately, you will get more money in the long run. Money that can be used to pay down your new vehicle through your credit union auto loan, or put into savings for emergencies or future repairs.

Your New Bedford Credit Union
There are many opportunities available to members at your local New Bedford credit union. St Anne Credit Union has been serving customers in the New Bedford area since 1911. Membership is available to people who work or live in the Bristol and Plymouth Counties of Massachusetts. With over 100 years of experience serving the Southcoast region, St Anne Credit Union is your best choice for getting a credit union auto loan in New Bedford.