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How to negotiate the best price on a car Advertiser Disclosure Advertiser Disclosure We are an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. Our goal is to help you make better financial decisions by offering you interactive tools and financial calculators as well as publishing original and objective content, by enabling you to conduct research and compare data for free – so that you can make informed financial decisions. Bankrate has agreements with issuers, including but not restricted to, American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Discover. How We Earn Money The deals that are displayed on this site are from companies that compensate us. This compensation could affect how and when products are featured on the site, such as for instance, the sequence in which they appear within the listing categories in the event that they are not permitted by law. Our loans, mortgages,, and other products for home loans. This compensation, however, does not influence the information we provide, or the reviews you see on this site. We do not contain the universe of companies or financial offers that may be accessible to you.


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4 min read published September 20, 2022

Writen by Rebecca Betterton Written by Auto Loans Reporter

Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She is a specialist in helping readers with the details of taking out loans to purchase the car they want.

The edit was done by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor

Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate since the end of 2021. They are passionate about helping readers gain confidence to manage their finances with clear, well-researched information that breaks down complicated topics into bite-sized pieces.

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The purchase of a brand new car can be exciting , however, negotiating the lowest price may be daunting. It is important to prepare yourself for being confident and pushing for the price you deserve. 7 steps for negotiating your car price Make yourself more successful in negotiations by researching your options. These steps will allow you to feel more prepared to negotiate with the seller and ensure you negotiate a price that is within your budget. 1. Determine the most important aspects before negotiations can start take a look at the type of vehicle you’d like to own. If you don’t have your dream set of wheels picked out think about your needs and lifestyle. Are you likely to drive long distances or in dense traffic and require an efficient vehicle that is fuel-efficient? Is it just you and your partner, or do you need something larger to transport your children or relatives? Are there any features that are not negotiable? These are just some of the questions to consider before deciding on which models and models to choose . Also, run the numbers to determine the approximate amount . Utilize the auto loan calculator to estimate a monthly payment Don’t forget to take into account the other option when you are deciding on your budget. Finalize the amount you can pay, and keep it in mind as you negotiate. 2. Get preapproved for financing The next thing to do is look into financing. Think about getting financing before visiting a dealer to purchase a vehicle. Most car dealerships offer in-house financing, however it’s not . Dealerships typically increase their loan rates to make earn a profit. You will find better offers from banks, credit unions and online lenders. Compare offers and online. Securing financing will help you stay firm. You’ll know exactly the amount you’ll need to spend, which will mean less temptation to purchase upgrades or expensive accessories. Preapproval also gives the buyer the ability to negotiate – dealers could offer to match or beat the other offers that you receive to win your business. to see what the monthly payment could be at different rates and loan terms. 3. Do some research on the car’s worth Conduct research to find the car’s worth and then write down the following figures: Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) : The suggested sale price of the automaker, also referred to as the « sticker » price. Invoice price : The amount the dealer pays to the manufacturer to purchase the car. Fair market value : The cost that other people pay for the exact same or similar vehicle Find the MSRP on the price sheet that is attached to the window of the car. You can identify your invoice’s price as well as its fair market value through the internet or using a tools. If you’re looking to buy a brand new car, consider the invoice price as your starting point. In the ideal scenario, the price you decide on should be in the range of and the MSRP and this number. If you’re buying used or a used vehicle, you’ll be more flexible when it comes to negotiating in accordance with the vehicle’s model, make, mileage and condition. 4. Research dealerships Even if a dealership has good prices on cars you love, it may not be the best option. Beware of dealerships that have steep charges for dealer services or have poor reputations. Review online reviews to gain insights from customers who have been there. Also, inquire about the dealer’s fees prior to you decide to purchase the next car. 5. Shop around Unless you have a clear idea of the vehicle you’re looking for, down to the model models, VIN and model Shop for a while. Visit the dealerships within your local area over a few weeks. Get a feel for the types of cars available and talk to a couple of different sales representatives. Create a list of your top choices and study the MSRP invoicing price, Fair Market Value. It can be used to ease the process. You’ll have the pricing information needed to negotiate the most favorable price and the dealer will be aware that you’ve done your homework. It’s more difficult to bargain — and more difficult to overpay on a vehicle in the event that you rush through the purchase process. 6. Find out about tips for negotiation The salesperson will want you to negotiate the cost of your car. Don’t feel bad asking, but make sure you have the plan. Come prepared with cost and comparison charts. Look up websites such as and . If you know what the fair cost for the car is , or the dealership you are considering offers an offer that is better, you should communicate the information. This gives you an advantage when bargaining. Stay firm. Even if it is difficult about asking for a better deal don’t show it. Be confident and tell them the amount you’d like to pay. Firmness also means the confidence that you know what you deserve. For instance, if know you have good credit, use that to your advantage when discussing financing with a dealership. Be prepared for the long run. It’s not uncommon to find the negotiation process to be lengthy. Plan for an extended time at the dealership by staying healthy and well-rested. This will reduce the chance of getting angry or racing because of thirst, hunger or any other distractions. If you aren’t able to negotiate the price you want do not be afraid to walk away. You may find another vehicle and a lower price elsewhere, or go back to the dealership for a second time and bargain again. Walking away shows you’re serious about securing the best bargain. 7. Alternate salesperson if you’re dealing with a salesperson who is making you feel uncomfortable, locate someone else to assist. It could be best to bring your business to a different dealer to ensure that you are treated with respect when shopping and to negotiate the most favorable price for a vehicle. The next step is to buy a car. requires effort however, when you’re paying that much, you want to be certain that you get the car you want at the cost you want before you close the deal. Be sure to take time prior getting to the dealership to get ready so you can make a decision with confidence and know-how about the price you will spend. Don’t be afraid of request the price you want and walk away if necessary. Learn more


Writen by Auto Loans Reporter

Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She has a specialization in helping readers in navigating the details of using loans to buy an automobile.

Editor: Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor

Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate from late 2021. They are passionate about helping readers feel confident to take control of their finances by providing concise, well-researched and well-edited information that breaks down complicated topics into bite-sized pieces.

Auto loans editor

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