Many women think they will be at a disadvantage when they go to buy a car, but remember, you will only be taken for a ride if you let it happen. There are many things you can do to reduce the risk and earn the respect you deserve. The first thing to do is research. Get on the Internet and find out all you can about the car you want to buy. Invoice price is important. Print it all out, read it and keep it in a folder. Take the folder with you so you can refer to it when buying a car.
Many salesmen will try to win you over with a mild flirtation. Don’t fall for it. Ignore it, or give them a very cool look. Practice in the mirror or with a friend if you have to. When you can freeze water with a look, they’ll be able to tell you. Don’t let the salesperson do all the question asking. It gives them power. If you don’t know what questions you should be asking, find out from a trusted friend – or a mechanic.
Refuse to discuss money – especially monthly payments until you’re through looking. If a salesperson knows your monthly limit, they often feel challenged to see how much more they can get. Have a list of all the things you are looking for in a car and bring it with you. Refer to it often so you don’t get sidetracked.
Don’t wear your most expensive clothes or jewelery to the dealership. This will peg you as someone with money to spend no matter what you say. Park your car a block away and walk into the dealership. If you intend to trade your vehicle don’t let on until you’ve talked money, or he will factor this into the price.
It’s a good idea to take a friend along for moral support. The salesperson is less likely to try flirting or be patronizing. But if your friend is male, make sure the salesman knows it’s you who is buying. During the test-drive, make sure you are the one to drive and your friend gets to ride in the front passenger seat. Relegate the salesperson to the back seat where he can’t interfere with your concentration. Coach your friend beforehand to be the one to talk to him if he turns out to be a chatterer.
Don’t let him pass you on to another salesperson. One of their tricks is to try and keep you there and wear down your resistance like this. Remember, you are the one with the money, so if you don’t like the way he treats you, leave.