Do Your Homework Before You Buy A New Car, Atlanta

Southtowne has seen it with Altanta car buyers before: buying a car on impulse. Whether it’s your first car, or you’re a seasoned negotiator, you should never buy a car on impulse. We’re not talking about a candy bar at the checkout counter here. The buying process takes time, research, careful thought and even some strategy.

Organize your purchase and create a checklist that includes a list of everything you will need to make a good decision.  Without organization, the purchase process will be overwhelming. In addition to finding the best car for the right price, you have to navigate through confusing payment options and deal with salespeople.  Be prepared! Your checklist should not be limited to just the actual car itself.   It should be all the things, relative to the purchase, that you want and need before you to sign on the line.  Planning ahead and being organized will pay off with a much better and easier car buying process.

Here’s my list of what you should educate yourself on before you even set foot on a dealership lot:


Financing
– Before you even search the Internet for that new Atlanta Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet or GMC, sit down and figure out how much money you really have for a down payment, and how much you can realistically afford to pay each month. Never tell anyone those numbers.  Knowledge is power and you want to keep the power. While most dealerships can and will arrange financing, your knowledge will allow you to find the best deal and let you know the price range and terms you should be looking for in your new car.

Research – Do your homework online and check out all the Atlanta Buicks, Cadillacs, Chevrolets and GMCs you might consider. The more you know the better choices you will be able to make. Be sure to know the manufacturer’s suggested retail price and any special offers available in your area.  Shop individual dealer web sites for specials as well.  Internet specials on the dealer’s website are many times the lowest the dealer is willing to sell for. Check multiple dealerships and offers.  You don’t have to drive 300 hundred miles to get the best deal.  Just use your knowledge of the offers available to work your best deal at the dealer close to you.

 

Equipment – Make sure you get the equipment and features you really want and need.  Many times a dealership will advertise a vehicle that has very little equipment.  In their defense, it’s because they want to be able to advertise the lowest price on that Nissan car you’re looking for.  If you aren’t comfortable driving a manual transmission, don’t buy a car without automatic.  Get power locks and windows with a security system if you can afford it. Buy only the high tech features that you will really use.  There are lots of expensive toys out there today.  Choose wisely.

Items To Remember – Check with your insurance company to see how a particular model will affect your premium.   What is covered by the warranty and is the warranty transferable when you decide to sell?  Is Roadside Assistance included with the warranty?  Check fuel efficiency on the models you are considering and weigh the benefits of gas, diesel, and Hybrid.  Then decide based on your own driving habits and budget.

The Car Buying Process – Now you’re getting to the relatively fun part of your car buying experience: the car itself.  Don’t take a car on a test drive unless you are serious about the car.  After you test-drive the new Atlanta Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet or GMC, odds are that you’ll want to buy it.  Also, don’t test drive the highest trim level of a car (equipment, engine size, features etc.) if a lower trim better fits your budget. To avoid making a mistake, test drive the exact trim you plan to buy.  Better yet, test-drive the exact car you are considering.  Car buying can be easy if you don’t make excuses like “The dog ate my homework.”

Can you add anything else to this checklist? What’s important to you when buying a new or used car? Let your Atlanta car dealer, the Southtowne General Motors Superstore help you with your new car research!

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