You Can Save Money on Your New Car Purchase

By katie George

If you are planning to buy a new car before the year ends, you're in luck: incentives for the coming months are certain to improve as dealers seek to clear their lots of old inventory to make room for new models.

But, before you head down to your local dealership you'll want to have done some research first. Just because incentives (i.e., rebates, low interest financing) are being offered, doesn't mean that you're getting the best deal.

5 Steps Toward Saving Money

You can save money on your new car by doing the following:

Shop around

Assuming that you've already settled on a particular make/model, you need to get several offers from competing dealers. For example, if you are buying a Toyota Avalon, you'll want to have at a minimum three dealers provide to you prices on comparably equipped cars before making a decision. Expect to find differences of as much as several hundred dollars on offers.

Get discounts

Learn about all of the discounts available on your car. If GM is offering employee pricing on the Pontiac G8, you still may be eligible for other incentives which include recent college grads, military discounts, etc.

Pay cash or finance elsewhere

Having your financing arranged elsewhere will allow you to negotiate the lowest price for your new car without bringing in other considerations. Besides, if you get a low rate elsewhere or can pay cash for your Honda Accord, why not opt for the big rebate being offered?

Run a credit report

If planning to finance the purchase of your Ford Fusion, get a copy of your credit report first. That sweetheart 2.9% financing is only offered to the best consumers - you want to make sure that no mistakes are muddying your credit record. Correct problems first, then apply.

Sell your current car yourself

Lots of people go to the dealership planning to trade in their cars.

Incentives All Year 'Round

Some of the best deals of the year can be had in December as automakers want to increase their market share before the year ends. However, all throughout the year excellent deals can be had, if you know where to look for them and are prepared to negotiate.

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