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Better to Buy Used Cars in Most Major Cities

A new study by Interest.com has found those living in the largest metropolitan areas of the US such as San Francisco, Boston, and New York City - may not be able to afford a new car.

Detailed on Cars.com, the study concluded that out of the 25 largest metro areas in the US, only median-income households in Washington, DC can afford an average-priced new car, based on a 20% down payment, financing for no longer than four years, and principal, interest and insurance totaling no more than 10% of a household's gross income.

DC residents can afford a median monthly new car payment of $628 per month. After Washington, DC, are San Francisco, Boston, Baltimore and Minneapolis to round out the top five metro areas.

And the least likely area to afford a new car? Tampa, where residents are only able to afford an average monthly payment of $282. Regardless of what city you live in, I always recommend you use the free RydeShopper to get the biggest discounts on any new vehicle.

RankCityAvg. Affordable Purchase PriceAvg. Affordable Monthly Payment
#1Washington, DC$31,940$628
#2 San Francisco$26,786$537
#7Portland, OR$21,985$397
#9San Diego$21,781$433
#10New York City$21,464$431
#13Los Angeles$20,385$410
#19St. Louis$18,550$371
#22San Antonio$17,137$334

3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum Money

The 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 Network

Select 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).
Select Vehicle to Get Local Pricing

Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirect

TrueCar, 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 Checklist

Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan

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About The Author

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.

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March 2023

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