Buying a new car? Avoid these common and possibly costly mistakes.

Everybody loves buying a new car. But there’s a smart way to go about it that could save you some serious money and help ensure that your car-buying experience turns out to be very satisfying and rewarding.

So before you go all in, be sure to learn the common mistakes people often make. This way, you can avoid a bad case of buyer’s remorse, and make sure you’re making the best choice for you.

Mistake No. 1: NOT DOING YOUR HOMEWORK.
The internet has made doing research on all makes and models of cars extremely easy. So take a little time to learn about a car’s features, pricing, dealer costs and reliability before heading to the dealership.

Mistake No. 2: BUYING A CAR THAT WON’T MEET YOUR NEEDS.
Many people fall in love with a particular model, then experience disappointment when they realize that particular vehicle isn’t the best suited for the uses it’s needed for most.

Paying a higher rate than necessary can cost you thousands of dollars over the term of the loan.Mistake No. 3: SHOPPING WITHOUT A PREAPPROVAL.
Choosing the right financing is just as important as choosing the right car. Research all your options to find the best financing, then get prequalified before heading to the dealership. Dealers often use a tactic called “interest-rate bumping” (marking up a lower rate you qualify for). Paying a higher rate than necessary can cost you thousands of dollars over the term of the loan.

Mistake No. 4: NEGOTIATING DOWN FROM THE STICKER PRICE.
Knowing what the dealer actually paid for the car and its optional features is a highly beneficial way to negotiate. By negotiating up from the dealer cost rather than down from the MSRP, you can often end up with a better deal.

Mistake No. 5: MINIMIZING THE IMPORTANCE OF A TEST DRIVE.
You’re going to spend a lot of your life behind the wheel. So wouldn’t you want to know what it feels like to drive the car at a variety of speeds and in different road and traffic conditions?

Mistake No. 6: GIVING IN TO THE UP–SELL.
Buying a vehicle with options you won’t use or need wastes your budget, costs more money and pads the dealer’s profit. Think carefully about the options you really want beforehand. Refusing to accept unnecessary services and fees that appear on your invoice can save you money.

Mistake No. 7: MAKING YOUR DECISION TOO FAST.
Giving in to a salesman’s pressure usually turns out better for the dealer. If he knows you’re eager to buy quickly, it typically shifts the negotiating leverage away from you. Buying a car is a decision you’ll have to live with for quite a while, so take plenty of time to be absolutely sure before you say “yes.” It also makes sense to shop different dealers if possible.

Mistake No. 8: ASSUMING 0% FINANCING IS ALWAYS BEST.
While a 0% interest rate appears to be a great deal, it’s not always the best way to go. For instance, taking a rebate offered by the dealer and then financing at Allsteel Credit Union’s low rate can often save you more money than 0% financing. So check with us first before you finance.

More News ›