Always Force the Dealer to Quote Price First
Therefore, it's important that you always get the dealer to quote you a price first when contacting them via phone and email (See my negotiation guide).
You are, after all, the customer and can easily walk away from the deal and take your business elsewhere. Dealerships hate it when they lose a customer to a competitor, so you should have no problem getting them to give you an offer first.
Many salesmen will try to get you to volunteer a price. They'll say things like "What's the best price you've gotten so far?", or "What price are you looking to pay?". Just tell them you just started comparison shopping and that they're the first dealership you contacted.
Any dealer unwilling to quote you a price over the phone/email is not a dealer worth doing business with, so don't even worry about it if they refuse. In my experience, dealers that are reluctant to quote prices are ones that know they are not competitive. They will do anything to try to get you to come to the showroom before quoting a price - don't do it!
My Recommendation for Car ShoppersTrueCar No-Haggle, Edmunds Price Promise and 1-800 Car Show are the quickest way to see the lowest car prices in your area. These sites show you no-haggle prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually really good. This should be the first step you take when negotiating your car price. Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan
About: Gregg Fidan
Gregg Fidan + is the founder of RealCarTips. After being ripped off on his first car purchase, he devoted several years to figuring out the best ways to avoid scams and negotiate the best car deals. He has written hundreds of articles on the subject of car buying and taught thousands of car shoppers how to get the best deals.