September May Not be a Good Time to Buy a Car
Normally when sales are this bad, dealers are desperate and willing to negotiate deals. Not so in this case. The "Cash for Clunkers" program ended up depleting dealership inventory at a time when manufacturers had already scaled back production.
The result? There are now less than 1.5 million new cars available for sale in the entire United States. This is by far the lowest figure ever recorded since stats were first compiled 18 years ago.
The good news, from a car buyer's perspective, is that dealers are reporting very low foot traffic in their showrooms. In addition, car manufacturers have been ramping up production in order to replenish depleted inventory.
The problem is, it's going to take at least a month before inventory piles back up at dealer lots. For now, most dealers are ok with the fact that there are very few buyers. They simply don't have many cars to sell, so from their prospective, they're not losing any money.
Wait just a couple of months and we're pretty sure dealers will begin getting desperate again as their inventory starts piling up.
Note however, that not all cars are low in inventory. Cars that didn't qualify for the "Cash for Clunkers" program can still be found in large quantities. It's mostly the fuel efficient cars you want to stay away from at the moment.
3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum MoneyThe key to getting the best deal is to gather price or lease bids from as many local dealers as possible. Then shop that best price around until no one can beat it. Here are the steps:
Step 1 Get Prices From My Trusted NetworkSelect the vehicle you're interested in to see if there are local dealers in my network who will provide you with their best upfront price. You will get direct access to an internet sales manager who you can further negotiate with online (no need to visit dealership).
Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirectTrueCar, and CarsDirect are my top 2 online price quote recommendations. These services show you pre-negotiated prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually pretty decent. But remember, you can still negotiate further.
Step 3 Complete my ChecklistFollow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan
Each week, I'll keep you up-to-date on the latest car deals and news that might affect your purchase. This includes...
- Best Rebates, Incentives, and Lease Deals
- Latest Car Buying Scams and Tricks
- The Best & Worst Time to Buy a Car
- Which Cars You Should Avoid