We all know that salesman will go the extra mile to get you in the car you want, but it also might be at a price you don’t want to pay. Hidden fees come in all shapes and sizes when you shop for a new or used car – especially when you finance or trade a car in for your new ride. You can avoid all of those hidden fees that you might not be aware of, until it’s too late, with a few simple tips and tricks. The question is: where can you find an honest dealer who is willing to give you the best price, with the best finance option, and the most money for your trade-in? The answer, in short, you’re not. You need to do these things separately and on your own. Once you’re armed with the knowledge the car buying part is easy, so how do you avoid hidden fees when buying a new or used car?

Estimate The Price Of The Car

You’ll want to estimate the price of the car you want before you even talk to a dealer? That way, when you start talking to someone about a car – you know the true value before they start talking to you. This is one of the most important things to know, because it can be the biggest of the hidden costs. If a car’s true value is lower than the sticker price, you know the dealer is price gouging. You might not want to even do business with this dealer. So how do you get a used car estimate before you walk into a dealership? Check out www.cars.com. They can help you learn exactly what you should be paying for the car you are looking at before you even talk about trade-ins or finance.

Beware of the ‘Trade-In Trap’

Once you’re armed with the right sticker price, you’ll want to take the precausion to avoid the trade-in trap. Many people think it’s perfectly fine to mention a trade-in to a dealer the moment they enter the dealership, but it can be the biggest car buying mistake you can make. Why? Car dealers will give a great deal on your trade-in, but then add that price to the sticker price which makes your trade worth nothing. That’s why it’s really important to know the actual true value of a car before you walk in. That way, once the price is quoted and agreed up – you can talk about a trade-in because you’ll know whatever they offer has to come off the price that’s already there.

Talk About Taxes & Fees

Ask about every single detail upfront which includes taxes and fees. Everything from license fees to tax is completely separate. This price is not in the sticker price or true value of the car, these are hidden or extra costs added to your final bill. Be sure to get everything in detailed writing before you agree. Also, you might want to look up your local taxes and factor that into your budget – because this won’t necessarily be included in financing and you might have to put money down out of pocket.

Don’t Talk Finance With A Dealer

The best way to avoid a lot of hidden costs is to find a bank or finance institution on your own. You’ll get a better deal if you go in before you talk to a dealer. That way you’ll know how much you can borrow and what your payments will be. The dealer can’t put any hidden costs in because the bank won’t agree. The dealer also can’t mark up your finance rate or put you in payments you can’t afford because of taxes and fees, or anything else for that matter. Which keeps you at the price you can afford when buying a new or used car.

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