edmunds.com/car-buying:Behind the Scenes at a Car Dealership

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edmunds.com/car-buying:Behind the Scenes at a Car Dealership

Postby st louis steve on Fri Aug 24, 2018 6:02 pm

Did you ever wonder why it can take so long to buy a car? Have you questioned whether the salesperson really has to check with his manager to get a deal approved? Do you want to know why a car salesman can't just give you his best price upfront?

We know there are things about car shopping that seem mysterious. And we're here to give you some insight into what's going on.


Between the two of us, we have nearly 20 years of experience in buying and selling cars. Matt worked in car dealerships for 12 years as a salesman, sales manager and Internet sales manager. Ron buys and sells cars for Edmunds' long-term fleet of test cars and has written dozens of articles about all aspects of car shopping. Both of us help friends and family with their car buying. We hope we can make your car-buying experience smoother — and maybe even fun.

With that said, here are our answers to six common car-shopping questions:

Q: Why is it taking so long to wrap up this car purchase?

A: Usually one of two things is going on — or maybe both: You're shopping on a weekend or you may not have all the documents and information you need to do a car purchase.

Foot traffic at car dealerships is lowest on Tuesdays and peaks on the weekends, when most people have their days off. While there may be plenty of salespeople on the floor, the bottleneck typically occurs at the finance and insurance office (also known as F&I — we'll talk more about that later).

In the finance office, a manager will likely offer an extended warranty or other products and, of course, this is where you'll sign the sales documents. Fewer people work there and each customer might be talking to one of the finance managers for 30 minutes or so. While all this is going on, your new car is being washed, gassed and prepped for final delivery. If that process doesn't sync up exactly, you might have to wait a while longer for the car to be ready.

The other thing that takes time is, obviously, the deal itself. The average car sale takes about four hours. Yes, it's a long time, and that's because there are a lot of pieces to it. The dealership needs to run your credit, get your loan approved, appraise the car you're trading in, figure out the pay-off amount to your current car and agree on a price for the new car you want to buy.

Now, if during all this, you forgot a key piece of the paperwork, things can grind to a halt. So be sure you have the following ready:

Payment: This can be a bank or credit union check for a pre-approved loan, or it can be a cashier's check, a personal check or even a credit card payment for a down payment when the financing is done at the dealership. To find out what forms of payment the dealership will accept, call ahead of time and ask to speak with a finance manager.

Driver license: You have to drive the car off the lot, so the dealer needs to know that you are a legally registered driver. The driver license also serves as identification for your check or other form of payment.

Title for your trade-in vehicle: If you are trading in a vehicle, you will need proof that you own it. The title, sometimes called the "pink slip," shows that you are the owner.

Current vehicle registration for trade-in: If you are trading in a vehicle, you will need a copy of your current registration. Locate this important document, verify that the registration is current and also check that the sticker is on the license plate.
https://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/behi ... rship.html
st louis steve
 
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