The Best Time to Buy a Car

No one wants to pay full price when it comes major purchases – that’s why Black Friday deals lead to such excitement.  Consumers want to be sure that you are getting the most out of their hard-earned money – and a car is one of the biggest buying decisions to be made. However, there are many different opinions on when the best time to buy a car might be.

At the end of the calendar year? Labor Day? Memorial Day? It really depends on whom you ask - dealerships seem to have a sale opportunity for every holiday of the year! With all of these sales, how do you pick the best time to purchase?

The real answer is simple: whenever you have the need or desire to get yourself a new ride. Buying a car is a decision that shouldn’t be made with a time limit. It can be a lengthy process, and no one wants to add any pressure onto their decision by adding an unnecessary time restriction. If you really want to buy at the absolute right time to maximize value, there are a few options that could leave more coins in your pocket.

  • The end of the month: Salespeople are often given quotas to meet by the end of the month. This means that the closer you visit the dealership near a deadline, the more likely a salesperson is to cut you a deal. However, you have be cautious when it comes to this strategy – if the salesperson has already met his or her quota for the month, you might not get the discount that you hoped for. A good tip to help you discern what kind of price you’re getting: test drive the car earlier in the month and check out the pricing then. If you come back later, you can compare the rates and see how much money you’re saving.
  • The end of the calendar year: If you’re trying to buy or lease a new car, then December is the perfect time of year for you to be purchasing. Data suggests that year-end sales events are the best time to pick up brand new inventory from the outgoing model year. Not only do dealerships want to end the year on the right footing with sales, but they also want to make room for next year’s new inventory. The only con to this strategy is that a lot of cars may have already been sold at this point in the year – be prepared to possibly have slim pickings on the lot.
  • October/ November: Car sales tend to follow a rule: the sales are at their best when new inventory is released. These months are when that usually happens, meaning that the best sales are usually at the end of the year. However, if you just can’t wait that long to get your hands on a car, May, June, July, August, and September have more favorable deals than the months at the beginning of the year.
  • Early in the week: Weekends tend to be the busiest time at a dealership, which means that salespeople might have less attention to devote to you. Avoid the hustle and bustle at the dealership and show up on a Monday or Tuesday. You will be rewarded with the employees’ time and attention, which might end up meaning a better purchasing experience for you.

Of course, a dealership near you may have a killer deal for President’s Day, or an irresistible Black Friday offer, but these are the general guidelines for getting more bang out of your buck when it comes to purchasing cars. With these tips, you’ll be able to keep more money in your pocket at the end of the day!