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Best way to buy a car?

(26 Posts)
theclockticksslowly Fri 12-Jan-18 12:53:44

I want to replace my old unreliable car for a new one (well a used one with a few thousand miles on - I’ve seen a 2017 one with 5 thousand miles on that I’d like) from a car dealer.

I have enough saved to buy it outright rather than enter into any sort of finance agreement. Are there any downsides of paying cash (or I guess cheque?) that I should be aware of?

The finance agreements (im confused by the different types) have interest rates of 5% or more and I’m never sure whether you actually end up owning the car and the limits on mileage or scratches etc In my mind it’s be simpler just to buy the car outright.

Any advice would be much appreciated! Thanks!

MikeUniformMike Fri 12-Jan-18 12:55:54

I buy cars outright- I am not paying interest on the amount so it is cheaper.

theclockticksslowly Fri 12-Jan-18 14:07:58

What’s the etiquette for haggling at a main dealer for a used car? I’m quite nervous about the buying process and am quite likely just to go in and hand over the cheque for the amount on the window sticker. How do you haggle, should you haggle?!

IamLucyBarton Fri 12-Jan-18 14:13:26

No useful adv but will watch as I too would like to replace my old fuel guzzling banger for something more this side of the millennium.

overmydeadbody Fri 12-Jan-18 14:16:22

I always buy my cars outright, I don't see any downside to paying cash and in full and owning the car outright.

I always haggle, and always look around, test drive, and see what deal they can give me with party exchange on my old car.

It's always been an easy transaction.

mbwoy84 Fri 12-Jan-18 18:36:13

Always haggle and stick to your guns. If they’re not budging as much as you’d like, just say you have more cars to look it.

A cash buyer is an easy and quick sale for a salesperson. They won’t want to let it slip. At the same time, obviously be realistic.

If you want the best value for money though as a cash buyer I’d look at cars just over 3 years old. So much choice that would give great, reliable service for the long term. If you’re set on a car still under manufacturers warranty then fair enough, but taking into account depreciation against other running costs then you’d likely be better off.

HarrietSchulenberg Fri 12-Jan-18 19:12:37

To haggle well you'll need to know what the cars you're buying and part-exing are worth. Use Parkers or Autotrader online guides to find out.

Garages may offer you a seemingly better deal if you take their finance deal, eg £10k for cash v. £9k for finance, but you'll possibly end up paying them more due to interest, so do some sums based on what they offer you.

Test drive and take a mechanic with you if you can.

Dealer or third party warranties are usually not worth the paper they're written on so avoid them unless they're offered for free.

Finally, don't forget that bank transfer of funds is better than hard cash as many dealers won't actually take cash and a transfer gives you a better claim of ownership should a dispute arise.

Good luck and enjoy your new car.

MikeUniformMike Fri 12-Jan-18 19:50:15

Definitely do a test drive - one where you can pick up a bit of speed as well as a few junctions. Have a look under the bonnet, around the wheels, at the exhaust. Look for excessive wear on the driver's seat and pedals. Does it smell like an ashtray.
If you have a friendly mechanic or someone who is clued up about cars (not all men are) take them with you.
If they won't budge on the price, try to get a free service or something.
You can check guide prices online.

MikeUniformMike Fri 12-Jan-18 19:51:39

You might want to check how much your tax and insurance are likely to be before you buy.

theclockticksslowly Sat 13-Jan-18 00:16:40

Thanks for all the advice! Tax will be considerably cheaper than what I’m currently paying and the quote for changing vehicle on my insurance policy shows me getting a small refund too.

I’ve looked on autotrader and the car is being listed at the high end of the range autotrader would expect it to be sold for by a main dealer.

Apparently I could expect £790 for my current car in part exchange... I’m not too confident on the accuracy of that though! Just a couple weeks back I was considering selling it for scrap! So would be happy with getting a couple of hundred for it perhaps.

Any tips for the actual haggle? I have no one more knowledgeable to go with me I’m afraid or more confident at negotiating. I am kind of reliant on the trustworthiness of the dealer (kind of why I’m going to a main dealer and looking for a car with a decent amount of warranty left). If I ask if there’s any room to move on the price and they say no, what do you say in response? “Ok then, have my money?” !!

I’m hoping to pay a deposit on my credit card (for the card protection) and then the balance with a cheque/cash. Is that the usual thing to do?

I’m clueless!

mbwoy84 Sat 13-Jan-18 10:46:15

What is your current car to PX?

PM me the reg if you like and I can do some checks and advise you the best way forward (being in the trade)

NameWithChange Sat 13-Jan-18 10:58:05

I love this post, I am in exactly your position and same way of thinking. It's so hard making decisions re stuff you know nothing about on your own! I am currently stuck on diesel Vs petrol, always had Diesel and 2 dealers I have spoken to this week say that diesel still emits less overall and will be much cheaper to run. So hard to know what's best to do.

SisyphusDad Sat 13-Jan-18 11:20:35

I hate haggling too, but I think the phrase to use is something like "Right. How much of a discount can you offer me?" That way it's an open question and doesn't invite a simple "No" in reply.

Don't tell them your budget. If you do you'll never get an offer below it.

Also. If a discount is offered, the Sales Toad will say "I've got to clear this with my manager." Bollocks. They know exactly how much they can sell the car for. They just go round the back for a quick smoke. If you're feeling brave you can repeat this ad infinitum. Don't worry about their feelings. A colleague I used to work with - his job was to structure and negotiate big contracts - had a BMW salesman in tears once.

And be prepared, when you agree a price, to be passed on to the Business Manager, 'to sort out a few details'. Actually to try and sell you a lot of pointless add-on insurances. You don't need to say anything other than 'No', plus 'thank you' if you're in a good mood.

Finally, you can (sometimes?) pay the balance with a debit card if you have the money in your account. Check with the Dealer ahead of time.

Good luck.

mbwoy84 Sat 13-Jan-18 11:54:09

It depends on a number of factors whether petrol or diesel is the right option for you. The main one being how many miles do you do? And on what roads typically?

Yvest Sat 13-Jan-18 11:57:20

We like relatively high end newish cars and replace every 3-4 years so lease. Doing the sums we find it makes best financial sense

MikeUniformMike Sat 13-Jan-18 12:10:05

Car sales people are not particularly trustworthy. Haggle as much as you can and be prepared to walk away. They're probably desperate for a sale after Christmas.

NameWithChange Sat 13-Jan-18 12:12:36

I think I do a max of £10k and lots of it is about town with a couple of big trips a year. I was gobsmacked that swooping my old banger for an£10-£15k New ish car would result in same/lower insurance, seems nuts as the new one is worth so much more! Also I pay quite high road tax on my diesel now and seems non existent on newer diesels. I think the worry is what the government will increase the diesel road taxes to and when. Still a saving on mileage diesel vs petrol though I think?! So many factors to take into account!!!

MikeUniformMike Sat 13-Jan-18 13:26:17

Your insurance premium doesn't directly correspond to the value of the car.
I wouldn't buy a diesel unless doing a lot of mileage. You might get a bargain though as they're not so popular now.

reddington Sat 13-Jan-18 14:10:16

There’s so many variables around buying outright/finance/leasing that it pays to consider each and see what sort of deals can be done. Buying outright isn’t necessarily the cheapest way to buy a car. Things like finance deposit contributions can be quite substantial and then you can settle the finance. Sometimes leasing a car for 3 years can be cheaper than the depreciation hit if buying outright. Also note that you are the bottom of the pile as a cash buyer, the salesman won’t be bending over backwards to sell you a car, he’d rather be selling to someone on finance.

theclockticksslowly Sat 13-Jan-18 21:21:06

Thanks again for the advice and welcome aboard to anyone else wanting a new/used car but feeling a bit overwhelmed by the options!

Well I ventured to the dealer today to have a look at the car. I like the car but with no idea of how to even begin to negotiate on price, I wasn’t expecting the salesman to suddenly offer it to me with £500 off the price or anything as it is already ‘on sale’. He was throwing all sorts of figures around ‘in case it would be better to do finance’ and it got rather confusing. I said just to stick to a cash price and tell me what the cost would be - he listed it all down like an itemised list:
- £11490 car Value
- £129 admin fee
- £625 service plan cost (he later admitted once he had explained what it was that this was optional - not the impression he gave at first)

And where he lost any sort of sale:
-‘£20 of fuel so you have enough to get home’
seriously? Even if there’s no budging on price, isn’t it a nice touch to say ‘we’ll throw in a tank of fuel!’ Or even half! I wouldn’t even have complained if after purchasing it, there was just enough to get me to a garage but it made me laugh he actually adding this to the total cost. Is this normal? I’m assuming he wasn’t that bothered if he sold a car or thought I wasn’t that interested.

reddington yes did feel he wasn’t bothered about a cash sale.

He did say they’d look at the figures and with the part exchange too they may be able to get the cost of the car I wanted down to the budget I said I was looking to stay within so that was good (I told him my budget was less than the sales price of the car). He was meant to be emailing me that this evening but nothing yet. The pettiness of the fuel cost has put me off buying a car from him though!

I came away a bit more clued up I guess and wanting to buy a car online instead! Has anyone used buyacar? It seems to get good reviews. I found some from the looks of things good prices on the same model of car. Bonus for me being no salespeople to talk to!

mbwoy84 Sat 13-Jan-18 22:27:36

If you’re buying any car at that price, you should expect a full tank of fuel whatever happened!

reddington Sun 14-Jan-18 16:40:07

These fuckers with their admin fees are really something! No way I’m paying any kind of admin fee to buy a car, it’s just a way for them to advertise them cheaper. I’d be asking what the admin fee was for exactly and suggesting that’s the first thing he can remove. Get a break down on the service plan - how many services does that include? May be worth having, maybe not at that price but at 50%? As for the fuel, words fail me!

Acorncat Tue 16-Jan-18 15:07:32

I've just bought a car and they charged the £20 for road tax and £25 for fuel! I hate haggling so the most I got was £100 added to part exchange. But I knew it was already a good price after researching and I was in a hurry blush. Watch out for tax, remember after April 17 the rate changed to a fixed fee of £140. If there's a couple of similar ones then check the registration date (might only be for petrol).

theclockticksslowly Wed 17-Jan-18 00:09:30

Well the sales guy emailed with some figures he’d been working on - literally screen price of car plus admin fee plus ‘fuel - £20’! I’d rather there just be enough fuel in it to get me round the corner to the Tesco garage and I’ll fill up there and collect the points!

Anyway I didn’t like the guy even before the fuel issue so I’ve decided against that car. I am seriously looking at buying a car online though - good prices and the site/dealers get good reviews.

One issue though is although the website does part exchange they won’t do for cars over 10 years old. Mine is 14 years old. So this will leave me having to sell it. What’s the easiest way of doing that? I really don’t fancy the hassle of test drives and things. Just want someone to come along, collect it (and ideally hand me some money!) and take it away!

K1092902 Wed 17-Jan-18 00:19:49

Value it on webuyanycar. I personally advise people not to buy privately anyway unless they 10000% know what they are doing but I couldn't be arsed with people messing around over something I needed sold!

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