Local

June 15, 2012

Legal Assistance Tip of the Week: Car buying

by Capt. Nicholas Reyes
AFFTC Judge Advocate

A car purchase is a major event in your life, both financially and emotionally.

As such, it is important to research the type of car you want very thoroughly and not make impulsive decisions that could later come back to haunt you. Under no circumstances should you simply walk into a dealership and purchase a car that same day. This article will highlight a few practices to follow in order to protect yourself as well as save money on your car purchase.

 

The art of negotiation

Car salesmen are very good at telling you what you want to hear and trying to pressure you to purchase a car.

When you go to the dealership, don’t tell the salesperson what you want your monthly payments to be right away.

This will be difficult, because that is exactly what they’re going to ask you. Be vague and negotiate off of the actual price of the car. You should know what you can afford in terms of monthly payments; however, there is no need to divulge that information right away.

In terms of credit checks, you should always know your own credit score. In my experience, salesmen would tell me that my credit was worse than it actually was, and then “do me a favor” by somehow getting me a better credit rating for the loan. That’s not to say this is typical, but just make sure you know your credit and where you stand.

The best thing you can possibly do when shopping for a car is to get car dealerships to bid against each other.

The easiest way to do this is to visit multiple dealerships and look at the same/similar car. Tell the salesman what the other dealership is charging and ask them to beat that price. The more dealerships you can involve, the better prices you will get (of course, this is based on what you can handle). Continue with this cycle until you get the dealership refusing to budge and then simply pick the best price that you have. Car salesmen will try and make you feel bad for doing this, but in the end, you are perfectly entitled to do this and it will save you a great deal of money. Understand the time commitment though, this process can take a couple of weeks of negotiating and test driving cars.

 

Used cars

The process above can be applied to used cars as well.

The biggest thing to remember on a used car is to make sure that you get the car inspected by a trusted, independent mechanic, preferably before you purchase it.

Most states have lemon laws that allow you to return the car after a certain number of days. In California, you have the option to purchase a two-day cancellation contract, which allows you to return the car within two days to the dealer for any reason.

 

Final tips

When purchasing a car, ask to look at the contract you’re signing. You should bring the contract to an attorney, either here at the legal office or your own, to make sure that the contract is fair and to clarify any terms that you might not understand. Do NOT purchase a car on the same day that you go into a dealership. Dealerships will try and pressure you to make the deal on that same day. Make sure that you have a number of different options, that way you can be flexible and won’t feel the pressure to make the purchase at the dealership. Car buying can be a harrowing experience, but if you do your research and come into the dealership well-informed, you should be able to get a good deal and take a lot of the pressure off.

 

For more information, contact the Base Legal Office at (661) 277-4310. Legal assistance attorneys are available 10-11 a.m., Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and 3-4 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday. Paralegals can provide power of attorney and notary services 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Friday.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Separated but not alone

MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho–As the dawn broke out over the mountains, I woke up to the sun peeping through my window. Once I got up I went straight to the kitchen to make my family breakfast yet in the back of my mind, all I could think about was, how am I going...
 
 
duck-blind2

Duck blind drawing slated for Aug. 8

Waterfowl hunters can participate in the annual duck blind drawing scheduled Aug. 8 at the Rod and Gun Activity, Bldg. 210. Base hunting permits may be submitted to drawing officials from 9 a.m. until the actual drawing begins,...
 
 
LPGA1

Free golf clinics with LPGA tour player

Air Force photographs by Rebecca Amber Ladies Professional Golf Association tour player Stephanie Louden demonstrates how to correctly use three golf clubs, a wedge, a 7-iron and a driver during the free golf clinic July 24. Lo...
 

 

NASA’S American Eatery (Bldg. 4825)

Aug. 3-7 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday Beef taco salad Tuesday Lasagna Side salad and garlic bread Wednesday Country fried steak Mashed potatoes and gravy Vegetables Thursday Orange chicken Fried rice and egg roll Friday Baked cod Macaroni and cheese Broccoli All Blue Plate Specials — $7.89 Drink not included. Medium Beverage, $1.99; Large,...
 
 

Air Force promotes fatigue countermeasures

Human fatigue results from sleep deprivation. Fatigue has become a growing concern in the Air Force as sustained and continuous operations, along with global deployments, are stretching the ability of our forces to meet growing mission demands. Some Airmen may question whether fatigue is really a big enough hazard to worry about. Fatigue can decrease...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Chrissy Best

Losing sleep: CSAF shares what keeps him up at night

U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Chrissy Best Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III speaks with 501st Combat Support Wing Airmen during an all call at Royal Air Force Croughton, England, July 16. Welsh explained the...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>