Buying a new car? Feeling daunted at the prospect of dealing with a car dealer? 

In keeping with our previous features ‘buying a used car’ and ‘importing a car’ here is our guide to preparing to meet your car dealer; from handy hints and tips to the legal loopholes that you need to be aware of.
 
Before you go into any car dealership:
 
 
- Know what you want. Research the car that you want and the price that you are willing to pay for it. If you’re selling a car to buy a new one you also need to take this into account. Autotrader is a useful site to give you realistic representations of the sectors current prices.
 
- Research the best dealer for you. Like all business the automotive industry is competitive; find the best price that you can and stay with a reputable company. Many websites now have review sections, and many independent sites review different companies - do your research before you go.
 
- Check your credit rating/financial situation. Buying a car is generally a big purchase so you need to be sure that you can afford it. If you’re buying a car on credit it is usually advisable to secure the funding before going to a dealer.
 
- Know your rights before you go. 
Like all trustworthy businesses reputable car dealerships are subject to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) standards regulations. The motoring sector arm of the OFT is Motor Codes Limited and they are responsible for keeping an eye on registered company’s dealings.
When a car is being sold there are three criteria required to meet the OFT standards. They are: 
 
      1. The car has to be of satisfactory quality. 
      2. The car has to be fit for purpose
      3. The car has to match the description given.
 
If any of these regulations are broken after your visit you may be able to make a formal complaint, but remember these guides and do not buy if you are unsure.
 
-Find the right person at the dealership. You need to know the invoice price of a car ( what the dealer has paid for it) and you need to speak to the most knowledgeable person at the dealership. This can be done by making an appointment with the Sales Manager before heading down.
 
- Failure to prepare is preparing to fail. Do your research before you go and be ready to walk away from the first offer that you receive in favour of finding a better one in the future.
 
And finally.. while you’re there:
 
- Haggle, haggle, haggle. There are lots of deals out there; make sure you get the best one for you.
Take a look at our guide on buying a second hand car for while you’re there here.
 
This guest post was provided by the content team at Central Contracts, the UK car leasing specialists.
 
 

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