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Success Story: Melissa

April 5, 2021
Written by: Ray Shefska
Categories: Success Stories

We love to hear success stories from the members at Your Auto Advocate. It’s great to see how people are putting our tools and information to use and securing excellent deals on their new purchases, sales, and trade-ins.

Today, we’re going to share a success story from Melissa. She doesn’t quite have her car in-hand due to the chip shortage, but she’s already secured a great price for her trade-in. 

We’ll go over how she researched her negotiation, pushed when the dealership wouldn’t budge, and how she feels about the entire transaction. Let’s take a look at how Melissa negotiated the process and what she learned along the way.

Background:  A Well-Researched Car Purchase

Melissa tells us that she started researching which car to buy in 2020, but that she only recently found Your Auto Advocate in early 2021.

One of the first things that she remembers learning from us was that she needed to negotiate her trade-in and new car purchase as two separate transactions. Prior to that, she never thought it would be important to separate the two, and since she was about to trade-in her car, she was happy to learn a new trick.

Do you have a vehicle to trade in? Read the full guide to trading in your car.

After she signed up for Your Auto Advocate and became familiar with our dashboard, Melissa began to use our “trade in valuation” tool powered by Black Book, the same valuation book dealers use.. She tells us that she immediately put that into good use, since she was working with several dealerships at the same time.

On one of our live streams, Melissa had her deal picked to go through an examination with our trade-in analyzer. This is a segment in our live streams where we pick a member’s deal and analyze it live.

During this stream, she learned about some pre-trade negotiation strategies. Melissa also benefited from another Your Auto Advocate member,  Larry R, who shared some insights into what the tax benefit would be if she traded her vehicle in versus selling it to Carvana or Vroom.

With all of these facts and figures in place, Melissa was ready to head to the dealership to complete some final negotiations on her trade-in. 

At the Dealership:  One More Push

Although she had done a lot of the legwork upfront via email, Melissa made an appointment to visit a car dealership to finalize selling her trade-in. She decided to try to get more value out of her trade-in. 

The salesperson was visibly upset, since they had already prepared the paperwork. As such, they were dismissive of her attempt to negotiate. They tried to push her to sign the documents and move along with the sale that had been negotiated via email.

She didn’t give in, however. Melissa made it clear that she knew used vehicle prices were skyrocketing due to the microchip shortage and that this wouldn’t stop anytime soon. She told them that she knew that car dealerships tend to make more money on used cars than new cars and it would be worthwhile for them to pay more for the trade-in. 

Her point was further cemented when she let them know that she had already received multiple quotes from online price books and other dealerships for her vehicle, so she knew what her trade-in was worth.

Having the trade-in value that was provided by Black Book, the same value the dealer was using, helped Melissa to understand the value she should be receiving for her trade-in. Her persistence paid off and the dealership ultimately caved in and gave her another $200 for her trade-in.

After the Fact:  A Deal Handled Perfectly

Melissa reported that on the same evening she traded her vehicle in, it showed up on the dealer’s website. The car dealership was asking for $3,690 more than what she received for it. Considering that a good part of that difference usually comes from reconditioning costs to prepare the vehicle for a new buyer, she was happy with the amount that she received from the deal.

Melissa is still waiting for her new car to be manufactured and shipped out. Unfortunately, the chip shortage has customers all around the world waiting for their cars to arrive. Melissa did not mention the make and model of the car that she’s buying, but we hope that she likes her new car when it comes in.

A Happy Member and a Trade-In Deal Negotiated Well

Melissa was very pleased with the value that she received for her trade-in. She’s grateful that she found our tools and was prepared to bring up the effect of the chip shortages at the dealership. 

In her opinion, she’s saved over $4,000 compared to what she would have paid without Your Auto Advocate. We’re glad you negotiated a great price on your trade-in, Melissa!

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3 Comments

  1. Geraldine

    As a autistic women. I feel so taken advantage of by car industries. What can I do to get a good deal? Going to dealership is torture to my noise sensitivity. And looking at folks is even harder. I have no friends or family to help me. I have informed dealerships in the past of my special needs. Big mistake. What can I do? I have great credit and a job. But no references for credit application. I also very emotional because I’m afraid at dealerships. I literally ran out crying at my last attempt. As I get older its hard to get in and out of my 2013 Nissan Frontier Pro 4×4. What can I do?

    Reply
    • Zach Shefska

      Geraldine, thank you for taking the time to write this comment. I empathize greatly with you. Have you considered working with an auto broker? Based on what you’ve shared with us, I think that would be a very helpful and valuable option.

      Reply
      • Geraldine

        Auto broker? Is that what your company does?

        Reply

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