Being pre-approved for an auto loan through your credit union can be an exciting time. You will know that you can walk onto a car lot and eventually walk away in the vehicle of your dreams. What you can certainly be excited about the process, you don’t want to make some of the mistakes that could cost you thousands of dollars more than you really need to pay.
When you walk onto the lot, don’t be in a hurry to get the process done. Make the dealer show you several cars and take their time. The longer you are taking to make a decision, the more the dealer will believe they do not have something that will genuinely meet your needs, even if your dream car is sitting right there on their lot. The faster you push this process along, the more you will end up paying.
When you do see your dream car, don’t show your enthusiasm. Instead, make a comment about something that appears to be “wrong” with the vehicle. Not being 100% invested in, but considering it will entice the dealer to knock something off the price to get you into the vehicle if you show some interest.
You then want to be prepared to walk away from the vehicle. Don’t make any deposits and don’t hand over anything to them that can keep you on the lot. You want to ensure that you can walk away to think about it and leave your number with them. They will call you in a few days and negotiate a new price and you can go down there and “reconsider” the deal.
As you begin to finalize the process, let them know you have already been pre-approved through your credit union and that you would prefer to handle financial through them. You can provide them with the letter and they can verify the information. This allows you to avoid any extra time being spent at the dealership and it lets them know the deal is ready to go.
If you are trading in a vehicle, have it ready along with vehicle appraisals from two sources, if possible. You can compare this information to what is in the Kelly Blue Book also. The goal is to maximize what you receive for your trade in, since the dealership will try to recoup some of their losses through the trade in.
When you take a sensible approach to the auto buying process with your credit union loan, you will find that you can end up in the vehicle of your dreams. Best of all, it can be very affordable for you, thanks to the credit union loan you obtained.