Should I use a car buying service to help me buy my next new or used car, truck, SUV or minivan?

You are about to buy a car and you think you can try a car buying service like USAA or Costco. These are some of the well-known car buying services that are often used by its members. Kudos! You just made a good decision to seek help. Why? Not because you are incapable of negotiating yourself, anyone can learn that, or is already a self-proclaimed expert (just ask!). Here’s why assistance is a great idea: Car salespeople sell an average of 8-10 cars per month. This means they practice and hone their skills at least 40 times a month or nearly 500 times a year as it takes about four or five customers to walk in or contact by phone or email to sell one car . It is therefore clear why it is more than a challenge to beat a car dealer at his own game.

But what exactly do car buying services offer? They generally offer new car prices, maybe even some preferred interest rates or even a suggested trade-in value for the vehicle you may be replacing. What are these services missing? Aside from the fact that they won’t give you the absolute lowest price you might qualify for on the vehicle you’ve selected, there are items that only a personal car buying service can guarantee will be covered when it comes to total savings with purchasing a new or used car, truck, SUV or minivan. That being said, commercial size car buying services do indeed help you get a competitive price, so they are great value in that way.

To analyze the often overlooked money saving opportunities, here are some reasons why you may need a new vehicle:

1. You just graduated from university – opportunity to save money: programs for starters that guarantee extra discounts and often very low interest rates. *

2. You just declared your vehicle a total loss – money saving opportunity: get help getting a higher value for your total loss vehicle. Most Americans just accept the insurance adjusters’ offer, not knowing how (or even being able to) ask for a bigger settlement.

3. A family member or descendant has “released” you from your current ride. Opportunity to save money: special conquest offers when you switch brands, even if you don’t trade in a vehicle. Sometimes it’s as easy as showing your current car registration and you can save $2,000 or more right at your lowest price.

4. A mechanical problem with associated costs that make repair impossible. Or common sense prevents you from doing another repair because you no longer have a manufacturer’s warranty. Money Savings Opportunity: You may be able to trade in the vehicle even with the damage unrepaired and get a substantial down payment on your next purchase. This amount is often more than you think the vehicle is worth.

5. High mileage on your vehicle that will make you think seriously about trading it in for more reliability and peace of mind. Money Saving Opportunity: High mileage cars are far from worthless, often you can get up to 25% more than a dealer says your vehicle is worth. Especially with the tightness of the used car market at the time of writing this article, many used vehicles are worth more than ever!

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6. You just fancy a new ride. No other reason. Opportunity to save money: you don’t NEED a car. Take advantage of this! You can really take advantage of expert timing to get the lowest price possible (varies from manufacturer to manufacturer).

These are just a few of the many items that add up to the overall money savings when you buy a new or used car, truck or SUV. A car buying service is a great idea, but now that you know all the unknown areas where you can save extra money, make sure you enlist the services of a company that will provide dedicated and personal assistance for you in every place where you can discover hidden time and money wasters. These companies may not have big, fancy, and expensive websites, but you can trust them to know how to save you all those extra dollars and cents so you can fill your own wallet instead of the car dealer’s.

* A commercial size purchasing service does not have the staff and program depth to ensure that a car dealer has not disclosed that the lower rate exists and is available (only if the buyer knows to insist), but they ( the car dealership) is not motivated to tell you or your graduate that they automatically qualify for Tier 1 financing once the customer qualifies for the graduate discount money.