3 steps to negotiating on car price

2 min read

When you’ve found your dream car, negotiating the price might be easier than you think. It all comes down to making sure you are confident in putting forward your case for fair value.

Here are 3 steps to negotiating.

1) Research prices

Researching prices for the car model you want ahead of time using sites like redbook.com.au can help you decide what you are comfortable spending and what might be a fair price to offer. Make sure to get a few different quotes from car dealers if you buy through them to give you another form of comparison.

When it comes to new cars, don’t forget to look up car dealer websites to see what rebates they might be offering so you can mention these as part of negotiations. You never know when one business might be happy to match the offers of another car dealer to make a sale. You can also find some helpful tips on ASIC’s Moneysmart website.

2) Defects and extras

This is particularly useful for used cars. Make a list of any faults and any upcoming service milestones so you can work out what these might cost you and you can adjust the price based on this.

New cars shouldn’t have defects so instead look at the extras. If you know a newer model of the car you like will be released soon, you might be able to negotiate a better price through the inclusion of extras as the dealer group is likely to want to sell off the older stock as soon as possible. Or you might opt out of particular extras if you know you can buy different brands to install at a cheaper price – like a premium navigation system or roof racks.

3) Fair and lower than asking price

You can negotiate on a car whether it’s new or used. Just bear in mind with used cars it might be worth asking before you see the car if the seller is prepared to negotiate to avoid wasting time. Keep in mind the maximum you are prepared to pay for the car and then consider what the lowest point below asking price you could suggest that would also be a fair price for the vendor. The best negotiations end with both parties feeling positive about the interaction so aim to be fair and calm. The vendor might not accept that particular price but you can then negotiate from there.

Some people might find it helpful to have a friend with them for this to boost their confidence – or alternatively rein you in if you are likely to get emotionally carried away and spend more than you wanted. Remember it’s fine to walk away if the car will be more than you want to spend.

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This information has been prepared by Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 AFSL & ACL 233714 (Westpac) and is current as at 13 November 2017. BT Advisers are representatives of Westpac. BT Advice is a division of Westpac. The information in this article is general information only. It does not constitute any recommendation or financial product advice. It provides an overview or summary only and it should not be considered a comprehensive statement on any matter or relied upon as such. The information has been prepared without taking into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and so you should consider its appropriateness having regard to these factors before acting on it. Before acting on it, you should seek independent financial and tax advice about its appropriateness to your objectives, financial situation and needs. This information may contain material provided directly by third parties and is given in good faith and has been derived from sources believed to be accurate at its issue date. It should not be considered a comprehensive statement on any matter nor relied upon as such. While such material is published with necessary permission, no company in the Westpac Group accepts responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of, or endorses any such material. Except where contrary to law, we intend by this notice to exclude liability for this material.  ©BT Financial Group 2017