Looking to lease a new car? If so, then you may not realize that you can negotiate on many of your dealership's lease terms just as you would if you were buying outright. Still, there are some things you should keep in mind as you prepare to haggle with your local dealership. From there, you can drive off the lot with the best deal.
DO Start By Checking Your Credit Report
Your credit score plays a major role in your ability to qualify for special financing and other promotions that can save you money, so make sure to check your credit report before you head to the dealership. You can get a free copy of your credit report from any of the three major reporting bureaus once a year. As you review your report, check for any errors; these should be formally disputed and resolved to optimize your credit before you fill out a lease application on a new car.
DON'T Hesitate to Shop Around
Keep in mind that you're not obligated to do business with the first dealership you visit. In fact, it is recommended that you shop around with at least a few different dealerships on the same make/model of car to negotiate the best deal. You don't even necessarily have to visit every dealership in person. These days, calling or even emailing back and forth with dealership sales staff can be just as effective and saves you valuable time.
DO Know When to Ask For a Higher Mileage Allowance
When you lease a car, you'll have a specific mileage allowance. If you go over your allowance by the time your lease ends, you could end up shelling out a pretty penny for each mile you go over. If you know you do a lot of driving, focus your efforts on negotiating a higher mileage allowance with your dealership. Getting even a few thousand miles tacked onto your allowance can save you a lot of money in the long run.
DON'T Overlook Your Trade-In
If you have a car to trade in, make sure to check online to get a better feel for its value before you bring it to the dealership. Don't hesitate to even print out a copy of the estimated trade-in value and bring it with you, as this will show your sales team that you've done your research and won't accept anything but top-dollar.
A little knowledge goes a long way when it comes to negotiating the best deal on your new car lease. Keep these tips in mind as you prepare your visit to the dealership lot. Speak with a professional who negotiates car leases for help if you need it.