1. Slow Down!
    Speed in the automobile business is a very dangerous thing.

  2. Budget Before You Shop
    Know what you plan to spend on a car before you begin to shop. Use the calculators in our Car Buying Guide to help you determine that sum.

  1. Do Your Homework
    Is safety and reliability important to you? How about mechanical reliability? Sellers can't tell you if the cars they sell are unsafe or mechanically unreliable. We can help.

  2. Don't Deal with Dealerships That Require You to Sign a Mandatory Binding Arbitration Agreement
    Call dealerships before you visit them and ask. If they have require such an agreement, tell them you plan to take your business elsewhere.

  3. Never Buy on Your First Visit
    All dealerships want to sell you the first time you're there. Why? They make more if you don't shop!

  4. Never Leave a Deposit Until the Seller Has Agreed to Your Price
    Sellers want your deposit so you can't leave.

  5. Don't Fall for "Spot" Delivery
    You know: take it home "on the spot," the first time you've seen the car. Spot delivery means your emotions, not your pocketbook, are ruling the transaction.

  6. Stop the Transaction if You Feel Pressured or Confused

  7. Always Compare Dealer Financing to Financing at a Bank or Credit Union

  8. Remember That the Price of the New Car Isn't Where Sellers Make Money
    Many dealers will sell you a car for "cost" but still make thousands on you—on financing, on your trade-in, on add-ons and products such as credit insurance and warranties.

For More Information

Our Car Buying Guide gives you more details on each of these tips.