How to Negotiate the Best Car Price | Dick Hannah Dealerships

How to Negotiate the Best Car Price

How to Negotiate Car Price

Everyone wants the best price on a car, but not everyone has the confidence, experience, or knowledge to achieve this goal. If you’re new to the car-buying process or you just want a better experience from your second, third, or fourth vehicle purchase, Dick Hannah Dealership is here to help you navigate the process and get you familiarized with how to negotiate new or used car prices. Here are some strategies to be aware of when negotiating new and used vehicles.

Sales person and customer shaking hands after reaching an agreed upon sale price of a new or used car


Research the Market Value of Your Desired Vehicle

One of the easiest ways to get a great deal on your new ride is to come to the dealership with knowledge under your belt about the car you’re after — especially regarding the car’s true market value. You should know the average price people pay for the car in general, the average price range for the vehicle in the area you live in, and the appraised Kelley Blue Book value of the car. This knowledge will empower you to negotiate, as you have hard data to use as a basis for your negotiations. 

Woman shopping for a new or used car online at


Get Pre-approved for the Vehicle Loan Beforehand

A great way to avoid the stress, confusion, hassle, and high APRs of dealership financing is to get pre-approved for an auto loan before ever stepping foot on a car lot. Financing through the dealer tends to be more expensive because they often increase your interest rate as a way of compensating themselves for being the go-between for you and the lender. 

The best part of getting pre-approved is that the dealer will have to beat the offer you received from the outside lender, which guarantees that you, not the lender, get the best deal. You can get pre-approved at most local credit unions and banks. These institutions can usually offer promotional interest rate specials that make car buying even more affordable.

Customer is pre-approved for a vehicle loan from their preferred bank or credit union or lender.


Compare Prices at Multiple Dealerships

Just as you’ve shopped around for cars, you should also shop dealers and get multiple price quotes. Make these dealers aware that other nearby dealerships are offering similar or lower pricing so they will compete to offer you the sweetest deal. You may also consider doing some digging to find out which dealership paid the least for the car you want on their lot, as this usually increases their ability to haggle with you.


Examine the Car Carefully for Any Imperfections

While minor cosmetic imperfections may not break the deal for you, they can be used to negotiate the price of the car. Interior and exterior blemishes, upholstery tears, cigarette smell, and more do not interfere with the vehicle’s functionality but can be brought up to the dealer. He or she may be willing to subtract the cost of repairs from the car’s sale value.

Man inspecting new or used car looking for any imperfections before sale


Request a Report of the Vehicle’s Past

Knowing a used vehicle’s full history is important in negotiating the price of a car. Until you know how many people have owned the car, how many accidents it’s been in (if any), and how well the car has been maintained, you don’t truly know its value. You can use services like CARFAX to get a full report of this information.


Get a Professional Mechanical Inspection

A person’s word about the condition of a vehicle isn’t enough when it comes to such a large financial commitment. That’s why you should always hire a third-party mechanic to inspect the vehicle and identify any problems that could be used to negotiate the price down further. Sometimes, the dealer will even fix the issues instead of just discounting the car. 

Car technician inspecting car to make sure there are no mechanical problems with it before sale


Don’t Be Afraid to Walk Away

Negotiating won’t always work, but it’s always worth trying if it gets you a better deal. If you ever end up in a situation in which you feel you’re being taken advantage of or you aren’t comfortable with the terms of the deal, walk away. You aren’t obligated to anyone until you sign — and wouldn’t you rather give your money to a salesperson you like?

For more tips on negotiating car prices or to browse honestly priced cars, contact Dick Hannah Dealership. We’ll make sure your car-buying experience is as smooth as your new ride.

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