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How to negotiate when buying a car

How to negotiate when buying a car


Some people are natural negotiators and others are not but everyone should haggle when buying a car. It not only saves you money, it's all part of the experience. So next time you visit a Car Nation Canada location to buy your next car, remember these tips!

Do your research

The more you prepare for your purchase the better the chance of you striking a deal. Firstly, figure out how much you're going to be able to afford to pay. Find out how much your present car is worth as a trade-in. Then factor in any cash you're going to use or get pre-approved for a loan. Add all that together to come up with a sensible figure.

Next, research the car(s) you want. If you have something specific in mind, check out average prices nationally and locally. If you don't quite know what you want, check out what's available for your budget.

Set your criteria

We all have a minimum set of options we want. Whether it's big alloy wheels, navigation, leather interior or the latest safety equipment, we all have an idea of what we look for in our next car. Write it down and set this as the absolute minimum. We want you to leave us completely happy with your purchase and you're only going to do that if you get what you want.

If you're planning to buy a certified used car from us, it might help to set a maximum age or mileage. We get all sorts of vehicles, so having a minimum acceptable limit will ensure you get the car you're looking for.


The art of negotiation is for both sides to leave the table happy. When negotiating with one of our sales team, play fair, be realistic and we should be able to do business. Be friendly, be polite but never show your hand. Never tell a salesperson your maximum budget. Never tell them how you're paying right away either.

Be purposeful by not asking tentative questions. For example, rather than "will I get a discount?" ask "How much discount will you give me ?" If no cash discount is possible, ask about car upgrades, for example upgraded wheels or equipment. There is often more leeway with options than there is with cash.

Don't talk too much. Make a reasonable offer and wait until the salesperson replies. We all want to do a deal and if it's possible, we will do one.

If a deal isn't forthcoming, you have a final card to play. Offer to close the deal right there and then if they give you the price you asked for. We all have targets to achieve and having a sale in the bag is too good an opportunity for any salesperson to ignore. If it's possible to do a deal, you can be sure it will be done here!

Categories: Finance