Yes, I know this has nothing to do with BRCA test results, surgery, or cancer, and to be honest it seems so trival in light of life or death issues, but it’s part of this BRCA girls life right now and I thought I would share. Like I’ve said before, maybe what I’ve gone through will help someone else….in this case, with their car buying experience…
“The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice”
The 3rd row SUV.
I just had to have the 3rd row seat SUV, the shiny one with the cool backup camera. You know the one I’m talking about.
For months before my surgery we researched and test drove all sorts of makes and models, narrowing our search down to two, and then we paused for surgery and healing.
Picking up where we left off, the glorious two, the super sexy Mazda CX-9 or the very considerate Hyuandi Santa Fe. With a budget in mind I began my search for the lucky car that would come home with momma. My deciding factor would be based around our BUDGET or at least that’s what I told myself. I stumbled across the one I wanted, and it was like lights shined down from heaven. A beautiful brown Hyuandi Santa Fe with the 3rd row seating. Aaaah!
Love at first sight!
The sticker price was fair and was ultimately what brought us in. The vehicle was perfect for us, it was everything I had hoped for. Best of all, after taxes, we would be within our budget! My family sat happily in the lobby area with the car sales man, small talking. He would leave for a bit and come back with different payment options, we chose the one that would work best for us on a month to month basis and didn’t think anything of it. About an hour or so into it, with restless kids, we were ushered into a small office to meet with the finance guy.
The finance guy.
The smooth talking finance guy, he’s good. <<BEWARE>> When we walked into Byran’s office we were immediately greeted with the excitement of opportunity. The dealership had just begun working with a new credit union who was cutting fantastic deals left and right and Byran was the man who would get us the deal we needed. Woohoo! Byran continued on, he talked about “throwing” this into our deal and that into our deal, he was definitely on our side, making everything sweeter for us! Things like an extended warranty (we need that right?), PERMA plate, Safe Care, and Alarm Replacement….(you need all that too don’t you?). Never ONCE did we discuss the final price of the car, it wasn’t the focus. Our talk simply revolved around our monthly payment and all the extra things we didn’t even know that we needed. Byran was the man! We signed and walked out of there as happy as could be.
Don't be deceived by the monthly payment!
Slapping my forehead because now I realize that the monthly payment doesn’t matter. What really matters is the last line on the contract, the TOTAL SALE PRICE.
The yellow contract.
At midnight that same night, with all the paperwork signed and the shiny new Santa Fe in our drive, I woke. Something told me to check the contract. I did so obediently. I pulled out the 2 1/2 foot contract and began to review it all. I went over all the fine print and through the itemized section line by line.
Total cash price, good. That’s what we agreed to. Taxes, fine we knew they were coming. Accessories….umm, we didn’t add anything. Why is that there??? As I continued, I got to line 7, the very bottom of the contract, the AMOUNT FINANCED….my jaw dropped, my heart began to pound. There had to be a mistake!!!!
I whipped out my phone, pulled up the calculator and started adding. Something I should have done while sitting in Brian’s office. I added $3500 for warranty, $1500 for PERMA plate, $1500 for Safe care…and it went on and on like this until I reached a grand total of aprox $10,000 above the cost of the car!!!!!
I cried and prayed. Could this be fixed???
I had to deal with all the emotions of it, the disappointment, the anger, the fear. The last thing I wanted to do was to walk into good ‘ol Byran’s office and ring his neck when in fact I needed someone to ring my neck. This was my money, my deal, my signature. My fault.
At the mercy of Byran.
“I want to take all the unneccessary off”, that’s what I said as soon as Byran invited me back into his office. I explained that I had a budget and that we blew it way out of the water with all the unnecessary. Could he help me? I mean an extended warranty on a year old car that still has warranty, why?? Byran tried to convince me, “it’s only $20 extra a month”. Maybe, “but if I wrote a check today for the car how much would I write that check for?”, was my response.
To his credit Byran sat back and finally listened, and he worked with me. We took it all off, got down to the price of the car + tax and I was in budget! Thanks Byran at Hyunadi Ontario, I am definetly sighing the sweet sigh of relief. Phew.
Don’t make the same mistake I did. Learn from me. Keep reading for some tips that might save you the next time you wander onto a dealership lot for that new or used car….
Here’s what I learned from what could have been one of the most costly mistake I’ve made and how you might avoid doing the same.
Don’t take kids with you when you’re ready to buy a car.
After an hour or so mine got tired of sitting still. My eldest was texting me and standing at the window trying to get my attention, way too distracting.
Have & keep your budget in mind, and check the line “amount financed” before you sign anything.
Look over your contract paying special attention to the “amount financed” and the “total sale price”, which includes your interest. Make sure this vehicle does not exceed your budget. If it does then you can not afford it. Move on.
Take the contract home before you take the vehicle home and go over it with a fine tooth comb.
I didn’t even know you could do this until I fine tooth combed my contract at midnight and saw this option. My advice, leave the shiny car there with the dealer, go home, take your time, review the contract. Sleep on it. If you still want it the next day, call them and tell them you are on your way and to get that pretty car ready!
Ask tons of questions.
My second time around, I asked Byran to explain each thing to me once, twice, and then he even drew me a picture. That’s okay! It’s your money! You need to understand what you are spending it on.
Research other options for the optional.
Before you agree to the cost the dealership adds for special services like roadside assistance, key replacement, maintenance plans etc. Do a little internet search, find out if the extra somethings might be obtainable from a different source without including it in the financing of the car.
The “optional” aren’t necessary no matter how necessary they might seem.
Something that Hyuandi Ontario did was charge us for things that they had put onto the car prior to us negotiating a deal. Things like “door edge guard” and “perma plate”, items found listed in the (optional) “theft and surface protection” area of our contract. These were things that had been done to the car prior to our interest in the vehicle and yet we were being charged for them.
Last but not least, get your financing squared away before walking onto the lot if possible.
Go with a check in the amount you want to spend and don’t go beyond that. Stay in budget. If the dealership is not willing to bend, then you keep looking. There’s something else out there for you!
Lastly remember, stick to your guns. Protect your money. Don’t pay more for a vehicle then you intended when you set your budget, and when you find that pretty new car, and you get the deal you desire you’ll ENJOY IT that much more.
Happy car buying to you & yours!