So you’ve written down a list of all your must-have and nice-to-have features and found one or two models that tick a lot of the boxes. You’ve checked them out properly in person to make sure they’re not too bulky and not too much of a pain in the backside to set up. And you’re ready to head into the dealership and start talking numbers.
But are you ready to start that conversation? There are a few ways that might really help you not only get a better sale price, but also make the whole process a heck of a lot smoother and an all round better experience. We know negotiations aren’t everyone’s cup of tea and it can be stressful for many, which is why we’ve made the following list of 5 solid tips for when it’s time to get down to brass tacks.
Tip 1. Walk in well-researched
When you’ve done lots of homework, you’ll be much more confident while discussing prices. This includes making enquiries about the model(s) you’re interested in across a few different dealerships and requesting their best possible price directly (they might be reluctant to give this to you, but if they do try your best to have them email you the quote so you’ve got it in writing).
If you’re after a few extras that don’t come standard, it’s important to be well aware of the difference in prices between the base model and your desired (made-to-order) van. Determine whether it’s actually worth it - can you make additions down the track for less? The point here is that having a standard model to compare prices between dealerships is much more straightforward.
Tip 2. Timing can be crucial
Brands bring out new and updated models each year, and if you’ve chosen the latest and greatest you can bet you’ll be paying a premium price for it. Instead, consider going with the last year’s model because it’ll be discounted because of the newer model’s release. And going back to being well-researched, jump online and do some Googling to check if the model you’re looking to buy is going to be superseded in the near future. If so, wait until that happens and you’ll be able to get a better price.
The time of year can also play a role in how open to negotiation the dealership is. Arrive in the middle of winter on a cold, rainy Tuesday afternoon and you may well be the first customer (who’s ready to actually buy) they’ve had for a long time which might help your chances of securing a great deal - they do have sales targets, after all.
Tip 3. Be willing to walk away
Emotions have the power to completely take over a situation, and dealers know this. They’ll get you inside the van, have you breathe in that incredible smell, and get you to picture yourself on your next caravan holiday to invoke an emotional response to get you to pay more.
Don’t let them! Stay grounded and keep your emotions in check. Taking a few deep breaths in through the nose, out through the mouth can help to centre you.
If you’re unhappy with the final price they present to you and refuse to go lower, or you feel confused by how they present a figure (they’ll do this with extras and financing), stand up and thank them for their time and be on your way. Go home and have a think about things - there’s no absolute necessity to buy that day (no matter what they say).
Tip 4. Don’t be a Karen
Becoming frustrated and getting angry with the dealer isn’t going to help. Whatever happens, keep a cool, clear head and be polite. Kill them with kindness, as they say. They’re more likely going to be willing to help you and get you the best price if you’re nice than if you’re rude and combative.
And remember - they’re people too, just trying to make a living!
Tip 5. Have your finances in order
In a very similar vein to car dealerships, caravan dealers will do their best to push their own in-house financing on you. Do not even consider opting for this. Ever. While it might look attractive at first glance (0% interest for the first X months, etc.), drill down into it and there are gaping holes that’ll end up costing you a lot more than you think.
Instead, sort out all your finances prior to even setting one foot in the dealership. Not only will this let you sidestep their finance talk immediately, but it’ll also provide you the bargaining chip in that you’re ready to buy - as long as they can give you the right price.
Get fast and simple caravan finance today
At Stratton Finance, we’re here to work with you and secure you the best possible caravan financing deal out there. Use our online finance quote tool to find out your estimated monthly repayments and when you’re impressed with the results (we know you will be!) you can call us directly on 1300 787 288 to talk about things in more detail.
Alternatively, feel free to send us an enquiry and you’ll hear from us shortly.