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Shopping for a car in 2022 is not like it was a few years ago when you could test drive a vehicle, go home, and think about the purchase and inevitably get a follow-up call from a dealer and then haggle on the price.

Research cars online first

What is a fair price for your desired vehicle? One way to find out is by spending quality time with Google.

There are, however, pitfalls to online car searches. With cars quickly selling, some dealerships may struggle to keep their inventory up to date on their websites.

Be flexible

With scarce inventory, it’s prudent to come up with a list of must-haves. Be as flexible as possible when it comes to everything from manufacturer to color and trim options. In this category of market, being brand loyal could end up costing you. You may be just as happy with a similar make and model as your ideal car, but that doesn’t stretch your budget as much.

It’s also wise to cast your search wide in terms of location. Looking beyond your ZIP code – even crossing state lines – may be what it takes to find your next vehicle. The flexibility level occurs in finding more cars with your desired features and the ability to compare prices.

Consider ordering a new car

If you don’t want to scour the internet or drive all over the place in search of your next vehicle, you may want to consider ordering your car.

This “secret menu of car buying” is a sound option for those with patience. Montoya notes that while order times vary, buyers can expect to wait six to eight weeks to get the keys to their vehicle if they go this route.

Make rising used car prices work in your favor

In today’s tight market, you’d be surprised how much your used car may be worth. With many people put off by the high prices of new vehicles, a larger group of shoppers are gravitating toward used options that fit into their budget. This scenario makes trade-ins desirable.

 

Bargain for what you can get

While you may not walk away from the showroom floor with thousands of dollars slashed off the price tag, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few perks to be had.

The key is to know which vehicle is needed and what we want, to be able to use it for the first time without any complications.

 

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