Car Buying Strategy: Gather Information, Negotiate, and Save Money

Looking to buy a car? Follow this car buying strategy to secure the best deal. Gather information, negotiate over the phone, and make dealerships compete for your business. Save money and make an informed decision.

Buying a car can be an exciting but daunting process. With so many options and dealerships to choose from, it’s important to have a strategy that will help you secure the best deal possible. In this article, we will explore a car buying strategy that involves gathering information, negotiating over the phone, and ultimately getting dealerships to compete for your business. By following these steps, you can ensure that you make an informed decision and save money in the process.

1. Gather Intel: Take Your Time and Visit Multiple Dealerships

When you’re out car shopping, it’s crucial to resist the urge to jump at the first good deal you see. Instead, take your time and visit several dealerships. The goal here is to gather information about the make, model, color, features, and most importantly, the price of cars you’re interested in. Don’t be afraid to ask sales representatives questions, but keep the interaction casual with no commitments or signing anything yet. This step will help you establish a baseline and identify the lowest price available for the car you want.

2. Compare Your Notes and Identify the Lowest Price

Once you have visited multiple dealerships and gathered information, it’s time to compare your notes. Take note of the lowest price you found for the car you want. This will serve as your baseline for negotiation. By having this information, you are well-prepared to start contacting the dealerships and driving the competition.

3. Challenge the Dealerships to Beat the Lowest Price

Now that you have the lowest price in hand, start calling the dealerships back, but here’s the twist: start with the one that gave you the highest quote. Challenge them to beat the lowest price you’ve found. It’s important to stand your ground and negotiate over the phone rather than going into the dealership. This way, you maintain control of the situation and keep the competition between dealerships alive.

4. Play the Game Smartly and Negotiate Further

As you go down your list of dealerships, if one dealer offers a lower price, call the others back and see if they can beat it. This back-and-forth negotiation is the key to getting dealerships to compete for your business. Remain polite but firm in your negotiations, and remember that you are in control of the price you are willing to pay. This process may take time and effort, but it will inevitably lead you to the rock-bottom price that dealerships can offer.

5. Always Bring a Calculator and Understand Financing Terms

When discussing financing, it’s essential to bring a calculator and know the basics of compound interest and loan calculations. This ensures that you have a clear understanding of the financial terms being presented to you. If the numbers seem sketchy or don’t add up, don’t hesitate to call them out. This will keep everyone honest and can potentially save you from hidden costs or confusing financial jargon.


Q1: How many dealerships should I visit before making a decision?
A1: It’s recommended to visit at least three or more dealerships to gather a comprehensive range of prices and options.

Q2: Can I negotiate the price over email instead of phone calls?
A2: While email can be used for initial inquiries, negotiating the price over the phone allows for more direct and real-time communication, increasing your chances of getting better deals.

Q3: Is it possible to negotiate additional features or warranties?
A3: Yes, negotiating additional features or warranties can be part of the negotiation process. Remember to establish your best price before discussing additional options.

Q4: Should I consider financing options from different lenders too?
A4: Absolutely! Shopping around for different financing options can help you secure the best interest rates and terms. Don’t limit yourself to dealership financing options alone.

Q5: What if the dealerships refuse to negotiate or match prices?
A5: If a dealership refuses to negotiate or match prices, it’s perfectly fine to move on to the next one. Remember, there are plenty of options out there, and finding one that meets your budget and requirements is key.

Remember to take your time, gather information, negotiate over the phone, and play the game smartly. By keeping dealerships competing for your business, you are more likely to get the best price possible. Additionally, don’t forget to bring a calculator and understand the financial terms involved. Armed with knowledge and a clear strategy, you’ll be well on your way to a successful car purchase.

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