4 Tips for Car Shopping in Des Moines

Now that you’re in the market for a new car, what’s next? Buying a car is a stressful process, especially since the most recent statistics show that as of 2015, the average cost of a new vehicle has increased to $33,420. The next car you buy could be one of the largest investments you’ll ever make. With the right information, you’ll be on your way to buying a car with confidence. Here are four tips to help you shop for a car in Des Moines, Iowa, the smart way.

Do Your Research

Preparation is key when shopping for a new car. Most dealerships post their inventory online for potential customers to review. Before visiting the dealership, take advantage of the information that’s available on the internet. The key things to look out for during your search are mileage, inspection history, and invoice price. If you’re unable to do the research on your own, you can hire a broker in the Des Moines area. The broker will not only do market analysis, but they will also tell you the manufacturer’s discount.

Stay within Budget

Buying a car on impulse could put a huge dent in your wallet. Taking the time to assess how much you can actually afford will save you money in the long run. If you have a trade-in, rebate, or pre-approval on a loan, be sure to include this in your budget. You can get information on trade-in appraisals and manufacturer’s rebates by searching online. If your bank’s interest rate is lower than the dealership’s offer, you could also save thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. Bottom line: Don’t be afraid to pull out a calculator and crunch the numbers. Being smart about your money is one of the most important steps of buying a car.

Shop Online

Car Shopping Online - World of Wheels

Image via Flickr by TuRbO_J

Not only can you make price comparisons on as many cars as you’d like, but dealerships tend to offer bigger discounts online. Shopping on the internet can also be a major time-saver. If you apply for financing online, you could be in and out of the dealership in less than one hour. Once you find the car online that sparks your interest, call the dealership to check their inventory. You don’t want to waste time if the car is no longer on the lot.

Negotiate Pricing

After you’ve finished your research, you’ll be able to negotiate pricing like a boss. First, find out what other customers in your area are paying for the car you’re purchasing. Buyer analysis will help you to better gauge if an offer is too high above market. Once you have the market value, ask the dealership for the invoice price. Car shoppers often confuse the invoice price with the MSRP. The invoice price is how much the dealership paid the manufacturer for the vehicle. You’ll want to negotiate a price that falls between the two prices mentioned. If you feel that negotiating is out of your comfort zone, hire a broker to do the haggling for you. By following these simple tips, you’ll be ready to sign the dotted line and buy your new vehicle.