Used Car Guide: The Best Time to Buy a Car
Do you need a car? Rather than rushing, you should wait for the best time to buy a car. If you plan on buying a used car, here is your guide.
To “get in while the gettin’ is good” when buying a used car, timing does play an important role. You want to try to target the best time where the best deals and the least amount of competition is present. Overall, this point in time, used cars are still seeing amazing deals due to more vehicles coming off lease.
Late-model cars are absolute steals right now, and yet there’s still even more opportunities to save! If you want to hone-in on the best time to buy a car, this guide will help you find it.
The Best Time of the Year
While we can’t always pick when we go looking for a new car, there are advantages to waiting. If you can make it until the holidays, you’ll be rewarded with dealer promos that are designed to move older models in preparation for the new model year. They will start trying to promote these sales starting at the end of September and they will run until the 31st of December.
Expect lots of rebates, incentives, and factory discounts. The longer you can hold out, the bigger the deals, of course.
The Best Time of the Month
The absolute best deals come at the end of the year, but not everyone can put life on hold. If you need to purchase a car outside the holidays, the best time to buy a used car is the last day of the month. If that last day is when they’re close, then it will be the last business day.
This is because most deals and incentives that the manufacturer releases don’t arrive until the middle or end of the month. On top of that, the dealership will be pushing the hardest to meet their sales quotas. This bit of leverage can be enough to negotiate hundreds, if not thousands, if you play it right.
Used Car Buying Tips
Do your homework and figure out the MSRP price or Bluebook value, then factor in the rest for dealer profit. This way, you’re not going into the dealership blind, you can demonstrate that you know the true value. Ideally, you want to get multiple quotes.
Another very effective way of leveraging your negotiating price is to compile a list of your monthly expenses. By showing them exactly what your budget is, no estimates, they will be less inclined to assume you’re playing hardball. Having everything in black and white saves a lot of time explaining “this is out of my price range.”
A the end of the day, the dealership and the car salesman just want to hit their sales quotas. They won’t waste their time with you if you come prepared and ready to buy a car.
The Best Time of the Week
Although the last day of the month is ideal, there are times during the week that gives the best results. For example, weekends are usually when the dealership sees the most business. This is bad for you, the guy looking to get a deal.
If you appear to be hard to negotiate with, a used car dealer might just quote you once and move on. They know that time is money when the dealership is full. Your best bet is to come the day after, on Monday.
If the weekend was particularly slow, you might be able to squeeze into that last sale to hit their marks. This is a bit of a gamble, of course, so if you want to play it safe, go on a Tuesday or Wednesday. The middle of the week is the slowest time for car dealerships.
Car salesmen are going to be more willing to spend time negotiating with you, since you’ll likely be the only one there. The catch here is if you’re shopping during typical holiday vacation weeks. Obviously, a lot of other people will have the same idea on the best time to buy a car.
Best Time to Buy a Car: During Closing?
You might have read or heard from someone that the best time of day to buy a car is right before closing. The concept here is simple: catch all the employees winding down and getting ready to go home. You show up, they rush to get you in and out as fast as possible.
Flawless plan right? Wrong, actually. If the car sales staff see you coming with only 30 minutes until closing, they’ll be 1) frustrated and 2) unimpressed. They know you’ll be causing them to be late going home, unless you are already pre-qualified and know exactly which car you want.
Don’t make the salesman’s job difficult just because you’re trying to pinch a few hundred off the sticker price. Used car benefits go well beyond saving on the initial investment. Things like upgrades and repairs can cost less, because newer models come with “new” prices.
Dealerships that Go Above and Beyond!
Don’t just show up to any dealership at the end of the year, on a weekday, in the morning, and expect magic to happen. Some dealerships just don’t care about giving you the best deal, especially when they don’t specialize in used cars. Instead, rely less on tricking salespeople and more on reputation.
Check out how Clawson Truck Center stacks up to their competition. Actions and numbers speak louder than vague promises and conditional sales. Don’t settle for less, this is a buyer’s market. It’s the best time to buy a car for the foreseeable future, as long as you don’t have a preference against used.
Have your cake and a long-lasting strong truck, too! There’s no better time than now to buy a used truck with low mileage, good warranty, and excellent coverage. Stop by Clawson, if you’re in the Fresno area, and get honest deals and advice.