Each week, I hear from listeners whoíve been thwarted by making classic car buying mistakes, without even knowing it. So, here is a handy list of 8 common mistakes people make and tips on how you can avoid them.
#1: Not Trusting Your GutMistake number one is not trusting your gut. This oneís easy to avoid. Trust your instincts, you have them for a reason. If something doesnít feel right, either with the business or salesperson, leave.
#2: Believing Everything You Read OnlineMistake number two is believing everything you read online. A lot of whatís out there is opinion, not fact. So be careful where you go to research a vehicle or get dealership info. You canít verify it most of the time, so look for a trusted and reputable source. Also, understand that often dealership prices are ďbait and switchĒ prices just to get you in the door.
#3: Rushing The Paperwork ProcessMistake number three is rushing the paperwork process. Do yourself a favor. Slow down. Read what you sign so you arenít surprised down the road to find out youíve purchased extras you didnít know about or an extended warranty. Paperwork is tedious, but read it all because you are signing a legal, binding contract.
#4: Taking An Improper Test DriveMistake number four is taking an improper test drive. Donít buy the car of your dreams without driving it. A ďsimilarĒ vehicle wonít do. Test drive the one you want to drive off the lot with, so you donít start out with problems or overlook options that are important to you.
#5: Not Knowing Your Credit ScoreMistake number five is walking into a dealer without knowing your credit score. Know where your credit stands. Less than trustworthy dealers will try to work bad credit to their advantage and could result in you paying a higher price and interest rate.
#6: Playing Games With The DealerMistake number six is playing games. Donít withhold info from a dealership, like whether or not you have a trade-in, or how you are paying for the car. Good dealerships wonít play games with you, so in return, you shouldnít play games with them.
#7: Not Knowing Interest RatesMistake number seven is not knowing what interest rate you can get. If you have a bank or credit union, find out what rate they can give you. Then give the dealership the chance to meet or beat the rate.
#8: Leasing When You ShouldnítDonít get caught up in a lower monthly payment if there is any risk of driving over the mileage limits. Itíll cost you a pretty penny in the end. Also, long-term 42-month or longer leases are a bad idea, and I also never recommend 3rd party leasing companies.
If you can avoid these mistakes, youíll get a much better overall deal and a happy ownership experience.