Is it time for you to buy a new car? Are you dreading it? If so, you’re in good company. A good number of women admit that they don’t like the car-buying process due to how they are treated on the sales lot.

However, a negative car-buying experience doesn’t have to be your plight. If you are willing to take a few important steps before you head out to buy a car, you can save yourself a lot of money and a lot of grief. Here are three tips to keep in mind before you buy your next car.

Do Your Research

According to Nolo, women have a disadvantage when it comes to buying cars, even though women buy 54% of all cars that are purchased in the U.S. and exert influence over 84% of the car purchases.

They’re disadvantaged because a great number of car salespeople think that women don’t really know about the car-buying process or about cars in general. Car salespeople have a reputation of charging women more money for the same car as they do men.

The best way to combat this type of behavior is to really do your homework. You need to know what kind of car you want. You also need to be aware of the cost of that car in your area. Get Internet quotes from various dealers and compare.

Approach salespeople with confidence, and don’t be afraid to take notes. It’s best if they know you’re informed and that you’re ready to walk if you can’t get what you want.

Buying Power

A Forbes article reminds readers that sometimes during the month are better than others when it comes to car-buying.

Usually, if you shop for a car at the end of the month, you’ll get a better deal than at other times. That’s because car salespeople have quotas. If they haven’t met their quota by the end of the month, they’ll be more inclined to bargain.

Additionally, you want to be careful not to mention your trade in up front. When the final moments come, get a price finalized. Then and only then, offer up your trade-in.

As a side note, you’ll want to make sure that the title on the trade-in is free and clear. For example, you need to clear up any auto title loans you have on it and make sure that there are no co-owners on the car, who can impeded the purchase.

Learn Proper Sales Tactics

All salespeople have been taught some fairly common car sales tactics. These are designed to keep you on the string for as long as possible so that they wear you out.

Just know that going in, they are probably going to do some psychological profiling on you as well do things like tell you that if you don’t buy today, then you’ll lose out on a big sale.

Or the salesperson might take a trek to the back office to talk to the manager. Aside from wasting your time (to wear you down), it gives him/ her an avenue by which he/ she can introduce more “goodies” that will add to the bottom-line cost of the car.

When you are exposed to tactics like these, it is to your benefit to remind salespeople that you can buy a car from someone else. Such a tactic on your end may not be necessary, but be prepared to use it should the sales situation start to feel pressured.

Conclusion

The car-buying process is often stacked against women. Salespeople have been known to take advantage of them, often trying to charge them more or to pressure them to buy the same day.

In light of this, it’s good for you to go into the process armed with research. Don’t be afraid to let the salesperson know that you’re knowledgeable about cars. If that doesn’t work, then be prepared to go someplace else to get your car. That above everything else, should make them sit up and pay attention.