The worst time to buy a car is just as important to know as the best time to buy a car. Buying a car is a big investment. You worked, and maybe will still work, hard for that money. So you want to make sure that you get the best value for your dollar. There are several factors that will affect the value of the car, one of them is the timing. If you chose the right time to buy your car you are more likely to get the best value for your dollars than if you pick your car in one of the bad times described in this lens.
It is really an advantage to have an insider (an auto salesman) with you while buying a car. If not possible you can still have questions this guide written by an ex-auto sales manager. It’s as if you have the insider walking with you into the auto dealer’s lot.
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The end of the summer and the beginning of the fall is the time of releasing the new car models for the new year. Whether you are going to buy the current year model or you are after the new release … BEWARE!
If you buy the current model today and the new year’s model is released a week later your vehicle’s value will drop significantly. Besides, your new car’s model will be out of date while you haven’t got the chance to enjoy it yet.
On the other hand if you are going to buy the new year’s model once it is released, it means you’ll be among the first group of drivers who will test it on the road for the first time.
If you recall early this century there was a debate between Ford and Goodyear tires for who is responsible for the lack of safety of the newest Ford Explorer at that time. It was discovered to be unsafe on the road after drivers had serious accidents. And the Toyota massive recalls for safety issues are still current news.
How did the manufacturer know about the safety issues? It was after being tested on the road by buyers who lost their lives in the test.
Still some people love to be the first to drive the new years model in their community. Why not let them test it for you?
From another perspective, here in Canada and in the Northern United States the road conditions in winter all work against your car. If you buy your car in the fall you’ll be heading to the worst conditions to drive in. Your car will be exposed to salty roads and freezing temperatures that will favor the erosion of the car body, especially from the bottom. You certainly can have your car winter-serviced (get the bottom painted with a water proof film) but this will only delay the erosion for a little while.
Another source of erosion is accidents, which are more likely to happen in winter because of the prolonged bad weather periods. Any bodywork your car needs must be done without a delay, or your car’s body will get rusty where the paint is scratched.
In my opinion the best time to buy a car is in the spring. Whether it is a used or a new car, spring is the best timing. A used car that survive the winter without rust or accidents is a good buy. New cars will be already tested on the road, and you have three seasons to enjoy it before the winter. Also, if for any reason you need to sell your car after 6 months (moving or expecting a baby and will need a bigger car) you will get a better value for the car that you never drove in winter than a car that ran on salty and icy roads.
If you want the best price for a new car, wait until the new models are released and buy the last year’s model. You’ll run through winter through.
The rule of thumb here is to avoid crowds. Some dealers are open in the weekends, you don’t want to buy your car when they have more customers than salesmen. It makes your purchase not as significant as when you are the only customer in the lot.
In Mondays the auto dealers are starting fresh and will be ready for you. Try to walk in the same dealership on Mondays and Fridays and see how differently you’ll be treated. If you happen to shop for your car on Mondays you’ll treated with respect and everything but the salesperson is not under a lot of pressure, if you don’t buy from him he still has the time to make it up.
On the contrary, if you walk in a dealership Friday afternoon you’ll be treated with more respect and they will do every thing possible to get you to buy on the spot. Here is why: The sales people have to meet a certain sales volume each week, and any sales that will be closed on Fridays will show on their next pay check. You can use this fact to practice some pressure to get the deal you want.
Another reason Fridays are the best is that if you walk out without buying you have the whole weekend to think and talk to friends and family, and you’re very likely to get your car somewhere else, maybe from a dealership open on weekends. Mondays, on the other hand, if you walk out without buying you only have overnight for the above factors to affect your decision.