A New Car

On December 30 we purchased a new car. And I mean NEW as in 2010 new. I’ve never bought a new car before – I am one that says (and completely believes!) that the moment you drive a car off the lot it loses value. Who knows how scientific that thought is, but it has kept me from buying new all these years.

What pushed us to buy new – the price difference and the financing.

We regularly do business with two banks and each of them offered 4.5% – 4.9% financing.I consider those to be good rates, and are in line with the car we bought six years ago. But several dealerships (if not all the major ones) are offering various financing deals – 0% for 60 months, a low % for however many months, etc.

My brother suggested a few vans to look at and we settled on a Toyota Sienna. One dealership in town had three 2010 models and after looking at the NADA guide online and one of our banks online calculators, we went to the dealership with a solid idea of what we were willing to pay. We spent a couple of hours with the salesman, we did a five minute test drive and looked at all the features and options available to us. We said okay we’ll give you this much for it, which after talking to the salesman (who didn’t seem interested after we told him our price) we got a sales manager.

Salesman always want you to agree to a monthly payment price, but in our buying cars we’ve always walked in with what we wanted to pay for a final price. That rarely makes salesman happy – or it seems that way anyway.

The first day of talking to them, we didn’t agree. They kept pushing a monthly payment option, showed us a couple of different ways we would get there, and we ended up leaving. I’m okay with leaving, and amazingly enough so was my husband. Usually he likes to just buy a car and be done. One deal to buying new was qualifying for the 1.9% financing – I figured that was hard to do and so if we could, it would be worth going for. Turns out my husband has stellar credit (thanks to me, the one who takes are of the finances!) and qualifying was easy.

We went to them before Christmas and spent the next few days enjoying family, finishing up last minute holiday things, hanging out, etc. My husband was only here for a few weeks and we decided that if I was going to buy the car, I would do so after he left because he left me with power of attorney.

The salesman called every day, and we were interested but couldn”t go see him at that time or I was busy or we were out of town. When my husband was still here we decided we would trade in our van – when we first went to the dealer we didn’t talk about a trade at all, just negotiated a price. The salesman gave me a lowball offer over the phone – one I knew was just a starting off point because I realize they have to look at the car. So the few days go by with the phone calls coming in until I finally said okay I’ll come in again and we can talk about this.

The kids and I ended up being at the dealership for about three hours. The price we negotiated stayed the same and I traded the van in. I ended up taking their initial lowball offer because it really lowered the payments – to a difference of $45 a month – and I didn’t have to deal with the hassle of trying to sell it on my own! Maybe I could have gotten more for it, but at that point I was happy because we got a good deal.

So with the good deal on the van, the trade in and the 1.9% financing – we walked away with a brand new car that ended up costing around the same (as in within a few dollars, according to the online caculator) as an older van with much more miles on it. Overall I’m very happy.

Recent Entries

Comments are closed.