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When you’re buying a used car, you may be wondering how to get the best deal possible! In some cases, used car prices can be negotiable but some dealers may be reluctant to budge on the price offered. It is worth noting as a car finance broker ourselves, we can’t help you negotiate used car prices as we don’t directly sell cars and instead introduce you to a lender who offers finance. However, if you’re looking for tips on how to haggle for a used car from a dealer, we’ve got you covered!

men doing deal on used car

How much can you negotiate on a used car? 

The percentage you can negotiate off a used car price can depend on how good you are and which dealer you visit but there is no average percentage you can get off. Car dealers no doubt have drivers trying to haggle with their prices every day and for many, it can get tedious! For this reason, you should always be realistic and friendly when trying to negotiate the price of a used car. Trying to get 50% off the original price probably isn’t going to work out well so you should go in with an open mind. UK dealers are however free to set their prices so you may just strike lucky when visiting the right one. If you don’t want to leave it to lady luck, check out our top tips on how to haggle for a second-hand car. 

How to negotiate used car prices with the dealer? 

1. Set your budget.

Whether you’re buying your first car or you’re a seasoned car-buying veteran, the first place you should always start is your budget. Knowing how much you can spend on a car, either through car finance or by paying with cash, is essential to the buying process. Once you know how much you can afford to pay for a car, you can shop for cars within your budget and use it as a guideline for haggling. 

2. Research, research, research. 

Before you even step foot in a car dealership, you need to do your research. With your budget in mind, perform a quick online search of cars you buy in your local area. Doing so gives you a rough idea of the market price of a car you’re interested in, to make sure you’re not getting ripped off. Knowing which cars are available to you also gives you better negotiation power. You could haggle the price of a car with the dealer by comparing the vehicle with a similar one at a rival garage. 

3. Is it the right time to buy? 

is it the right time to buy a car?

Did you know the time of year you choose to buy a car can affect its price? New car registrations come out in March and September each year and buying a used car just before these months can bag you a bargain. Many dealers will want to clear some of their old, second-hand stock to make room for the new models which could be used to your advantage. 

Check out the best time to buy a used car

4. Know the worth of your part exchange. 

Part exchanging your car at the dealer is a great way to get rid of it, make your next purchase cheaper and save you time. However, it can be worth getting a valuation for your car before heading to the dealer to get an idea of its worth. Part exchanging at the dealer can be convenient but, in many cases, you may not get the best price offered. Dealers will want to make as much money as possible out of you so may offer a lower price. Knowing how much your car is worth can help you to negotiate the price of your next car.

5. Check the car’s condition and mileage. 

get a car from a dealer and haggle the price

Second-hand cars are pre-loved or for some drivers, not very loved at all! So you should expect to use cars to come with some defects or imperfections. However, small faults can be used to your advantage. Take a few moments to inspect the vehicle and look for any dents, scratches, scuffs, corrosion, or anything that seems to be missing. Also, take note of the current mileage of the vehicle and the age of the car. As a general rule, cars should be driven around 10,000 miles each year so a car which is 5 years old should have around 50,000 miles on the clock. A higher-than-usual mileage or imperfections in the condition of the vehicle can be an easy way to haggle the cost.

6. Be friendly, and polite and stick to your budget. 

When you haggle for a used car, you don’t want to go in all guns blazing. You must be realistic with which kind of discount you’re looking to get and driving a hard bargain doesn’t mean you have to be nasty either! Always be friendly, polite, and confident in your bargaining. Don’t offer up your budget straight away, instead try to offer a price lower than your limit, work your way up to your budget if they don’t budge and then stop there. Remember, negotiating a used car price doesn’t have to be hard and it can be as easy as asking “What discount will you give me?”.

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