If you’re in a car accident, it makes sense that you would spend plenty of time finding the right car wreck lawyer. With this reasoning, you would think that most people would spend plenty of time finding the right dealership when purchasing a car, but that’s rarely the case.
Instead, most people are more focused on the car they want. It’s not necessarily a bad thing to think carefully about the kind of car you want, but where you buy the car is just as important. You don’t want to feel bullied into a sale, you don’t want to have to deal with outrageous interest rates, and you may want to return for service later.
Instead of focusing too much on the exact make and model you want, focus on finding the right auto dealership with these tips.
Consider Your Financing Options
One of the first things you should consider is your financing options. You don’t want to settle on the perfect car at the perfect dealership only to discover that they are unable to help you finance your new vehicle.
It’s important to consider all of your options because there are many ways to finance a car. Some dealerships offer financing options with multiple lenders, enabling you to find a low-interest loan, but other dealers may not offer as many options, which means you may get stuck with a higher interest rate than necessary.
You will also want to consider if you can get a loan directly from the bank. If you can, you can go to any dealership.
Search for Reviews and Ask for Recommendations
Once you have an idea of a few dealerships that you might want to work with, it’s time to go online and check out customer review sites. This is where you will find information about how other customers were treated when working directly with the dealership that you’re interested in.
In addition to checking out reviews online, you should also ask around. Talk to your friends, family members, and coworkers to see which dealerships they went to when purchasing their vehicles. You may discover a highly recommended dealership, and you may discover one that you want to stay away from as well.
Make Sure They Are Easy to Get Ahold Of
When you’re ready to reach out, make sure you can do it easily. There are many ways a dealership can allow customers to contact them including:
- Phone calls
- Social media messages
- Online chat through their website
The dealership doesn’t have to offer all of these options, but they should offer a few of them so getting ahold of their sales department is easy. This information should also be found online. If you’re having a hard time finding an email address or the right phone number to call on the website, it’s a sign that you may want to move on to a different dealership.
Drive by the Lot
If you’ve never driven by the dealerships you’re interested in, now is the time to get in your existing vehicle and take a drive. You don’t necessarily have to get out of your car and wander around the lot—as that’s likely to alert the sales staff—but driving by can tell you a lot about whether you think you will be comfortable shopping there.
Is the building well-maintained? Are you comfortable with the side of town where it is located?
Tempted to try an out-of-state lot to save money? Make sure you consider whether you would ever want to make payments in person, or if you would ever need to return for service, as it can be very inconvenient and expensive in the long run to work with a dealership that’s far from home.
Consider Their Inventory
It really doesn’t matter how great the dealership seems to be if they don’t sell the kinds of cars you’re interested in purchasing. You do have to consider the inventory they have to offer. However, it is about a lot more than finding a dealership that sells the exact car you want.
Instead, focus on looking for certain safety features, and look for a dealership that offers used cars as well as new cars. You may discover you can get a great deal on a slightly different model if you buy used rather than buying the exact car you originally wanted.
Expertise and Experience
You should also consider expertise and experience. That means working with a dealership that focuses on selling and servicing certain models, and a dealership that has been in business for at least a few years.
You’re more likely to get the right parts and the right service if you work with a dealership that is used to working with your make and model, and choosing a dealership that has been in business for a while demonstrates that they offer service that is good enough to keep them in business for years.
Discover What Makes Them Different Than Other Dealers
Car salesmen get a bad rap, and in some cases, it’s well-earned. Bad dealerships with a sales staff that use slimy sales tactics still exist in the world. You don’t want to feel pressured into a sale, and you don’t want to drive home and discover that you’ve purchased a lemon.
Do a little research to discover what makes them different than other dealers. Visit their website and read their about page or see if they have a philosophy that they have posted online.
If you’re having a hard time finding this information, don’t hesitate to give them a call and ask why you should choose their dealership over other dealerships in the area. They should be able to tell you right away, and if they can’t, it’s a good sign you should move on to another business.
You should definitely consider what kind of car you want, but don’t let the dealership you work with become an afterthought. Enjoy the entire car buying experience by taking the time to work with a trustworthy dealership.