The best time to buy a car is usually around the end of the year, as sellers will try to meet their quotas and may offer deep discounts. however, you should also consider holidays and the beginning of the week. If you’re looking for the best time to get off the lot at a significant discount, holidays like the 4th of July and new model releases are your best bet.
three of the best times to buy a car
Time is of the essence when buying a car. and certain months of the year and days of the week are better than others.
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Monday may be the best day of the week to buy a new car. other potential buyers are often at work, so car dealer reps zero in on anyone who walks in the door.
“Monday came around, everyone made a lot of good sales and enjoyed the activity of a busy weekend,” says brian moody, executive editor of autotrader. “If you call or email a dealer on a Monday, there’s a chance you’ll get a better deal or just more attention. if the person has more time, he could add something extra, like free oil changes or free car washes.”
2. end of year, month and model of the year
As for the best time of year, October, November and December are safe bets. Car dealers have sales quotas, which are usually broken down into annual, quarterly, and monthly sales goals. the three goals begin to come together at the end of the year.
“the end of the month, the end of the quarter, the end of any period is usually a good time to go,” says moody. “That’s when there may be bonus opportunities for the seller or dealership to give them an added incentive to want you to drive away in a new car.”
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In addition to the end of the calendar year, it’s important to keep an eye on the end of the model year: the time period when newer versions will start hitting the road. Moody says that fall is usually when manufacturers start releasing new cars, but there are a few exceptions. “If you pay a little attention to see when the press starts sharing new car reviews,” he says, “it means the launch is imminent.”
If you’re considering purchasing an older model, Moody suggests waiting for an updated version. “While you may be able to close a deal on the older model, it’s wise to consider waiting for the updated version. it’s very rare that a completely new version of a model comes out, and it’s $5,000 more,” he says. “It’s usually a few hundred dollars more, but it comes with all sorts of new features and better fuel economy.”
Holiday sales can also offer deep discounts. here are some holidays that are especially good for buying a car:
- Presidents’ Day: The first few months of the year tend to be slow for all consumer activity, including car sales, but some manufacturers are working to stimulate spending during the presidents day weekend.
- memorial day: summer is usually one of the most expensive times of year to buy a car, but dealers tend to cut prices around memorial day . next year’s models tend to come out mid-year, driving down the price of cars already on the lot. however, beware of large crowds. As the weather improves, there may be plenty of other shoppers looking to take advantage of the early summer deals.
- July 4th: Many dealerships will work to attract car buyers around the celebration of the united states independence. however, if you don’t need a car right away, consider whether you can expect potentially bigger discounts to become available closer to the end of the year.
- Labor Day: The unofficial end of summer is officially one of the busiest times to shop for a new car. According to Zo Rahim, manager of economic and industry information at Cox Automotive, the Labor Day week accounts for more than 2 percent of all new car sales in an entire calendar year.
- Black Friday: Car dealers participate in the Black Friday sales craze just like the rest of the retail industry. In addition to the incentives offered by the manufacturer, you may be able to get better deals from your vendor. “For example, around Christmas, the person helping you will want to come home to her family and be more anxious to close the sale,” says Moody.
- New Year’s Eve: If you can make it, New Year’s Eve can be one of the best days of the year to buy a car. Salespeople could face monthly, quarterly, or annual quotas on New Year’s Eve, and if they meet their sales goals, they could earn a hefty bonus. this could make it easier to find a favorable deal.
how to get the best deal at the dealership
Regardless of when you decide to buy a car, you’ll need more than the perfect time to get a great deal. You need to have a complete understanding of your finances to know if you qualify for the best auto loan rates.
“Know what you can afford,” says Moody. “If you see a zero percent financing offer, it’s for people with excellent credit.” Getting a few quotes from independent auto loan companies can help you gauge whether the dealer is offering you a good deal. And if you’re buying a new or certified used car, check for rebates instead; could save you more money than interest-free financing.
Take the time before you buy a new car to improve your credit score, and do your research ahead of time to save as much money as possible. Doing some initial research can help you avoid common car-buying mistakes and give you bargaining power when you get to the dealership.
car purchase market considerations for 2022
Global parts shortages as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and supply chain issues have caused car prices to skyrocket. cbs reported that the shortage could continue until 2023.
the j.d. Power’s June 2022 U.S. Automotive Forecast found that the average transaction price for the first six months of 2022 reached a record $44,907, this is 17.5 percent higher than in 2021. Thomas King, President of the Power Division data and analysis from j.d power explains that “the inventory shortage that has reduced volumes, however has pushed up prices and profits, shows no signs of improvement”.
“June 2022 is on track to be the eighth month in a row that retail inventory closes below 900,000 units,” King says.
This lack of inventory means that as dealers try to recoup lost profits, prices will remain high. In April 2022, Kelley Blue Book found that buyers in the non-luxury segment paid an average of $1,030 above the sticker price, and these prices continue to rise for both new and used cars, according to Experian.
If you’re looking to buy a new or used car, this reduced inventory and competitive market will likely mean you’ll pay a higher base price and receive fewer discounts until the shortage is resolved.
the end result
Waiting for the best time to buy a car requires patience. If you can delay a purchase, time can be your friend. Cars almost always depreciate, so choosing the right time of year to buy a car, or the right month or day, can help you save thousands of dollars.
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