Avoid These Car Buying Myths

guy buying a car

Buying a new vehicle is necessary at least once in your life. While car shopping is a fun experience, it also can be quite stressful.

Our vehicles are important to us as they are our primary modes of transportation. Choosing the right car, picking the right dealership, and finding one in your price range is a lot to handle. To make your car shopping a bit easier, we’ve compiled a list of common car buying myths to avoid:

  1. All car salespeople are out to get you. One of the most wide spread myths is that all “car salesman are snakes” looking to take advantage of you for profit. While obviously their goal is to make the sale, the majority of car salesmen are simply doing their jobs. While salespeople do have goals they must meet, most know that their livelihood is at stake and will work hard to make an honest sale. If a salesperson does come off as pushy and manipulative, chances are they just aren’t very good at their job and you should take your business elsewhere if you are uncomfortable.
  2. Paying in cash will help you negotiate a better deal. A common myth about car shopping is that the dealer will take you more seriously and give you a better offer if you tell them you will be paying in cash. The truth is cash won’t help you get a better deal if the salesperson has the same price offer from another client who also is financing. Chances are the other offer will be accepted because dealers typically earn incentives when a client chooses to finance. Sometimes dealerships may even pad the interest rate you pay in order to increase the amount they make on the transaction – this means that the dealer can make more money when you lease or finance, which makes them less motivated to discount the price on a cash deal.
  3. Bring a cashier’s check with the exact amount you want to pay. This is another very common piece of bad advice often dished out when it comes to car shopping. The “take it or leave it” approach could mean you go home without a new car all together. Even worse, it could enable the dealership to charge you more than they originally would have offered since you are clearly willing to pay a higher price anyway.
  4. Don’t mention your trade-in until the last minute. Failing to mention you have a trade-in vehicle seldom gets you a better deal and in many cases will make the process longer. A better strategy is to be upfront that you have a trade-in and to compartmentalize the deal. Before going to the dealership research the price of your trade-in to get its actual worth and try to get as close to that as possible with the salesperson. If you aren’t satisfied, consider taking your business elsewhere and/or looking for other trade-in options.
  5. Car shop on a rainy day. This piece of advice seems to be very popular when it comes to buying a new vehicle. The idea behind this myth is that due to bad weather no one will be on the car lot, which means the dealer will be desperate to make the sale. This myth is so popular in fact that many people follow this advice, which in actuality causes many dealerships to be busier than usual on rainy days!
  6. Visit the dealership an hour before closing. Similar to the rainy day myth, another misconception floating around is that you will be able to secure a better price by visiting the dealership near closing time. The idea behind this is that the salesperson will be more willing to make a better offer quickly since the lot will be closing soon. In reality, if a salesperson thinks you are serious about purchasing a vehicle they will either stay late to close the deal or will encourage you to come back another day so more time can be spent on the process.

Buying a car doesn’t have to be complex. The bottom line is to make sure you do your research on what it is you want as well as how much you are willing to spend and can afford. If you avoid the misconceptions of car shopping and go into the buying process prepared, you will soon be on your way in a great new ride!

Make Ohio Valley Bank’s online Auto Loan Center your first stop. You can search for vehicles at local dealerships, compare, and secure financing all before setting foot on the car lot. Don’t miss the OVB Auto Loan Center’s helpful negotiation tips.