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3: Analyze Your Circumstances

Seal the Deal Without Breaking the Bank

Hands passing keysOnce you’ve successfully negotiated, you aren’t finished. Before you jump into your new car, understand these key items that can impact your wallet:

  • Other fees you may pay. These include sales tax, registration and documentation fees (for preparing documentation). Documentation fees offer a way for car dealers to pack extra expenses on to your price. Some states regulate the amount that can be charged, but often you can negotiate this fee. Dealer fees and fees for things like dealer prep, shipping, and advertising on top of what the manufacturer charges the seller should be negotiated. Make sure to ask about all dealer fees and what they are for.
  • Warranties and maintenance packages. 
  • Aftermarket dealer add-ons. These are items like security alarms, all-weather floor mats, technology upgrades and various other optional things that the dealer offers on top of the car price. Decline add-ons or negotiate to lower the price if these features are not valuable to you.
  • Existing miles. If you are looking to buy a brand new car that was used for test drives or has more than 300 miles on it, use that mileage to negotiate a reduction in price.
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