Buying a car,selecting the perfect make and model, test driving and calculating miles per gallon can be challenging. Equally, if not more daunting, is negotiating a price with a seasoned sales representative. This sole task can send the most skilled mathematician into a tizzy. The good news is that there are a few rewards for your “hurdle jumping” if you decide to go with a used versus new car.
“When you purchase a used vehicle you don’t lose that initial $2,000 to $3,000 dollars that you lose when you drive a new vehicle off the lot,” says Harold Williams, car sales professional and Floor Manager at Hubert Vester Chevrolet in Wilson, North Carolina. “Just be sure to find out if the manufacturer offers a Certified Used Vehicle Program.”
Williams, who has been selling cars for over 30 years, says that Chevrolet offers a certified used vehicle warranty program which covers your vehicle either bumper to bumper for 12 months or 12,000 miles; or the Powertrain Limited Warranty which covers your vehicle for five years or 100,000 miles. The program also includes 24/7 roadside assistance, courtesy transportation and thre day or 150 mile customer satisfaction. Additionally, it guarantees threemonth trials of OnStar and Sirius XM Satellite Radio. “This warranty is only if the vehicle is a Certified Chevrolet,” says Williams. “I advise you to purchase a certified used vehicle. It may cost you a little more but it is worth it.”
Another prize is being able to afford all the “bells and whistles” on your car. “Buying a used car also allows you to have luxuries such as leather interior, a sunroof and heated seats which you may not other wise be able to afford on a new vehicle,” says Williams who notes that these amenities help the vehicle to retain its value, but most of all the future resale or trade in value.
The best time to buy is always at the end of the month. This is when the dealerships are trying to meet their goal or sales quota, says Williams. He also cautions buyers not to run between dealerships or sales people because your credit score decreases every time it is pulled from the system. And always remember to have the car dealership run a Car Fax (which lists any accidents) on your vehicle of interest. Additionally, scour the car for all defects or anything that may need to be repaired, and find out how much manufactures warranty is left on the vehicle.
Finally, Williams advises potential owners to “do your homework and study the vehicle that you like. “Take each car for a test drive and take notes,” he says “Write down the things you like and dislike about each of them and then compare notes. Know what you are buying.” Ask about packages with different options and pricing points. Everything is negotiable.