Looking for a new car is an expensive task, and visiting lots of car dealerships is a time-consuming way to find the best price. Instead, consider this range of alternative methods for saving money on your next vehicle purchase. From buying import cars to negotiating on interest rates, there are several ways to make sure you're getting the best deal possible.
Be a Repeat Customer
Repeat customers at the same dealership will often save money by trading in their old car for a cash-back. For example, if you're upgrading from an older Toyota model to a newer one, your local Toyota dealership may give you a loyalty cashback for returning and continuing to use the brand. These deals are a win-win situation: you save money, and the car dealership gains a loyal customer.
Buy Import Cars
Import cars have surged in popularity recently, and for good reason. Not only are they cheaper than cars you find in the majority of Australian dealerships, but they also have features that can't be found in many of the Australian models. Doing some research on import car sellers near you could help keep the price down, especially if you know what you're looking for.
Find Interest Rate Deals
Most people don't have the money to pay for a new car upfront, and car dealerships know that. However, the interest rates that they charge on purchases are usually negotiable (unlike the price of the car itself). Haggling the interest rate down as you buy a new car may seem petty, but it will be worth it in the long run when you have more money in your pocket thanks to the low interest rate on your purchase.
Give Technology a Pass
While the latest GPS system or Bluetooth integration in vehicles do seem appealing, the fact is that these technologies date much faster than a car itself ever will. Often the vehicles with technology integrated are much more expensive than basic models. The material differences between the models with more features and the run-of-the-mill car are very minor -- sometimes just a lack of heated seats -- and by passing up on the technology, you're actually saving yourself a lot of money.
Research, Research, Research
Doing your due diligence is a good move before deciding on a car to buy; remember that internet search engines are your best friends. Don't let your local dealership rip you off when you can drive across town and get the same model for less. Consider alternatives such as import cars, and be prepared to do some reading to find the right car. Good things take time, and saving money on car shopping is no different.