Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

American Dream – Buying a Car and Insurance

Buying A Car and Insurance

Bearing in mind all the issues discussed about finance in earlier chapters buying a car (auto) in the US can be an interesting experience.The US has taken the term ‘high pressure selling’ to a new level, so be warned, but better still be prepared. In the US you can buy a car and drive it off the forecourt within a matter of hours. The sales staff’s number one priority is to make sure they close as many sales per day. So even walking onto a car dealership forecourt can be a hazardous occupation. To be honest and from personal experience the best time to walk on their forecourt is just before closing time, which can be as late as nine o’clock pm. By this time of the evening most sales staff are tired out from chasing down every visitor to the forecourt lot. Also, you can go to the forecourt outside of office hours to get a feel for the prices and do your own calculations. How Best to Prepare:

  1. Decide on what type of car you are looking for.
  2. Use the ‘Blue Book’ as your guide to car prices. Many dealers will try to stick as close to the maximum Blue Book suggested retail price as possible.
  3. Surf the local TV channels on a Saturday morning to see what deals are out there. Educate yourself as much as possible.
  4. Telephone various dealers to see in advance if they have exactly the type of car you want and that it’s in the price range you’re are looking for. You can also ask them what interest percentage rate they charge.
  5. If you know your credit score tell them what it is as this will certainly influence the type of deal you will be offered.
  6. Use your calculator to work out various percentage rates and rough payment plans.
  7. Resist the temptation to impulsive ly turn up to a dealership, if you can.
  8. Most dealers are prepared to negotiate, but more often than not they will increase the interest rate, or lengthen the re-payment terms so as to protect their margins.
  9. Take a calculator with you so that as they juggle the numbers so can you.
  10. Most of the salesmen I’ve seen have this habit of going back to their ‘manager’ to see if he can get you a better deal. This is all part of the negotiation process, but this technique is used over and over again and can take literally hours as each time they keep you waiting for up to twenty minutes as they discuss their tactics on how best to sell you the car. Be prepared to walk away and you’ll see how quickly they get back to you.
  11. If you can, don’t buy on the night, the sales staff will try every trick in the book to get you to buy that day and may even drop the price further.
  12. Buy only when you’re ready.

Buying Car Insurance: Just as in your home country always shop around for the best quote. It may be very difficult to find any form of insurance unless and until you have passed your state-driving test. Although many people from the UK do try to use their international driving license, for the most part, the US system is only geared up to insure people with a state-driving license and the second they are presented with something out of the norm be prepared for a headache.In the US cars are insured on a six months basis at a time. Perhaps this makes the insurance seem cheaper or perhaps people change companies so frequently that more than six months would seem too long a commitment.

We have listed a number of US insurance companies for your convenience.

List of Insurance Companies

Insurance Quotes Nationwide

State National

Kemper National

Allstate Insurance

Nationwide Insurance

Farmers Insurance