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How to Buy a New Mini -- The Art of the Deal

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How to Buy a New Mini -- The Art of the Deal

  #351  
Old 08-13-2017, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
.00191 is the going MF rate now. .00151 is not.

Just a FYI.

Kodan, didn't get a chance to review the PMs until now - did you firm up your deal?
I go in tomorrow to put my deposit down on the revised deal. Its 430.43 a month for 36 months 10k miles with no remaining payments due for current lease(well I pay on it till I pick up the new car). So basically I get a new car for 10$ a month more than my current payment about 3-4 months early with a very big PLUS is its not something I had to settle for options wise. Its exactly what I want.
 

Last edited by Kodan; 08-13-2017 at 09:35 PM.
  #352  
Old 08-14-2017, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Kodan View Post
You have so much knowledge and are so willing to share it. Do you mind if one asks what you do for a living? I think I am going full steam ahead with my deal I love the car I am getting and I can afford the payment . You are right I could maybe grind some more out of it but end of the day I am done with the sales side of the deal. Ready to start trying to figure out how to track my build and start being impatient for my baby to arrive.

Thanks again @2017All4 and @Zillon you guys were very generous with your time.
OH BTW I don't think I posted what I am getting. I am getting a 2018 Moonwalk Grey S 2 Door Hardtop / Automatic with paddles / Black roof and mirrors/ 16 inch black rims / Spoiler / Led Headlamps / Technology package / Harman Kardon Stereo / Heads Up Display
Glad it's all coming together for you. And I appreciate the kind words! My background is in the behavioral sciences. I'm retired now so I have waaay too much time to contemplate car deals. I do enjoy helping others gain info and insight that, hopefully, assists them in making better choices, and better deals. You've built yourself a really nice car from which I'm sure you will get full value. Congratulations. Just watch out for those sharks in the Finance office!!
 
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  #353  
Old 08-14-2017, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
Just watch out for those sharks in the Finance office!!
Yeah, they have trade schools to be a shark!!

When I negotiated over the phone, I insisted absolutely no upsell in the F&I office..
I wanted to read the bottom line to read the price we agreed upon.
When I read the contract, it showed “mop and glow,” and “etch-a-sketch"
for $500. But the bottom line still read the right price. I pretty much yelled out from the F&I office to my MA's office that I will not pay $500 for a wax job, and stickers. So my out the door price was $500 below what we agreed on.
Which turned out was my going in offer on the phone!! In which the response was, "were not even close"


For those unfamiliar with the terms mop and glow is some form of paint protection, and etch-a-sketch is window etching, but in this case serial number stickers on the inside of the body panels.They did remove the stickers, and told me that I wouldn't get the extended paint warranty!!
 
  #354  
Old 08-14-2017, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by TVPostSound View Post
Yeah, they have trade schools to be a shark!!

When I negotiated over the phone, I insisted absolutely no upsell in the F&I office..
I wanted to read the bottom line to read the price we agreed upon.
When I read the contract, it showed “mop and glow,” and “etch-a-sketch"
for $500. But the bottom line still read the right price. I pretty much yelled out from the F&I office to my MA's office that I will not pay $500 for a wax job, and stickers. So my out the door price was $500 below what we agreed on.
Which turned out was my going in offer on the phone!! In which the response was, "were not even close"


For those unfamiliar with the terms mop and glow is some form of paint protection, and etch-a-sketch is window etching, but in this case serial number stickers on the inside of the body panels.They did remove the stickers, and told me that I wouldn't get the extended paint warranty!!
Yup. Good story -- thanks for reminding us of how it works. "But we kept your payment where you wanted it!" they say. "Well, then, take out the adds I don't want and lower my payment", you respond. Well played. Game ain't over until it's over, and dealers play every second until the final whistle.
 
  #355  
Old 08-14-2017, 10:19 AM
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My monthly payment was not even part of the equation!!
She even said, oh, that will lower your monthly payments after removing the $500, no $h!t.

I learned a long long time ago, to remove the factors that go into the "four square" method they use.
Trade in? Nope, Private Party, if you must dump it, and its only a few years old< Carmax will beat the dealer every time.
What would you like your payments to be? Who cares, Ive already calculated what they will be beforehand, based on what I want to pay, and the interest rate I expect.
Down payment? Whatever is required to allow financing.

Too much pressure in a dealer's office, so the less you need to remember the better.
So I keep it simple, out the door price, down payment, with x.x% financing.

I only want to see 2 numbers:
The total price paid for the car, and the monthly payments based on my expected interest rate.

I use an online simple interest finance calc to verify the payments, that nothing was snuck in there.

Thank god the rule of 78 has been abolished.
 
  #356  
Old 08-14-2017, 10:24 AM
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Im going to go with my son-in-law to buy a VW Sportwagon, I showed him how to do the research.

Waiting to hear the term "third baseman" directed about me at the dealer. Because that would be true!!
Thats when they try to separate us.
 
  #357  
Old 08-14-2017, 10:30 AM
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One question for the financial wizards. When is the price set on a factory order? Is their a chance to negotiate after order is place, but before taking delivery?


I have one on order and am wondering if I can see "my invoice" upon arrival and negotiate from there?
 
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  #358  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by TVPostSound View Post
Yeah, they have trade schools to be a shark!!
Schools of sharks!!
 
  #359  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by papashex View Post
One question for the financial wizards. When is the price set on a factory order? Is their a chance to negotiate after order is place, but before taking delivery?


I have one on order and am wondering if I can see "my invoice" upon arrival and negotiate from there?
I negotiated my deal BEFORE agreeing to place the order or submit the credit app. MINI Financial credit app can be used to 'lock' interest rate/money factor.

Disadvantage of waiting until the car arrives is they've got the car you want/need and they assume, usually correctly, that you won't grind as hard because there sits the little beauty you've waited all these weeks to get your hands on.

The dealer wanted my order. I wanted a very aggressive deal. I got my deal and THEN the dealer got the order. And the understanding at the time was that if incentives improved I had the option to avail myself of those -- because incentives (rebates, lease cash, etc.) don't roll over into the new month automatically.

But, as has been discussed in prior posts, meat ain't meat until it's in the pan -- there's no final deal until the customer signs on the dotted line and hands over the payment. So, in theory, you can drive as hard a bargain as you want on the day the car arrives at the dealer. IF, that is, you are willing to walk away if you can't come to agreeable terms.

My suggestion always is to lock an acceptable deal at time of order and preserve the option to do "as good or better," if incentives improve at time of delivery. Just depends on what you can work out with your dealer, IN WRITING.

Hope this helps.
 
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  #360  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by TVPostSound View Post
Im going to go with my son-in-law to buy a VW Sportwagon, I showed him how to do the research.

Waiting to hear the term "third baseman" directed about me at the dealer. Because that would be true!!
Thats when they try to separate us.
By the time I walk into the dealership to finalize the deal, they know and I know the numbers. Email and telephone are great tools. But, as your story reminds us, the dealer is always hard at work.
 
  #361  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
Glad it's all coming together for you. And I appreciate the kind words! My background is in the behavioral sciences. I'm retired now so I have waaay too much time to contemplate car deals. I do enjoy helping others gain info and insight that, hopefully, assists them in making better choices, and better deals. You've built yourself a really nice car from which I'm sure you will get full value. Congratulations. Just watch out for those sharks in the Finance office!!
I think ultimately I did better on my deal because of both you an Zillon. It really helped though that we have 3 dealers in our area and two within about 20 miles of my house. I got my deal paperwork signed off on (so I do have it all in writing) and I also got my order paperwork also signed off on by both sides. They even bumped one of their lot cars out of their production queue and gave me priority one(customer sold) status on the production. Guy literally went in their system and clicked on one and was like damn that one went into production today and he then edited the very next slot in their lineup. We both double and triple checked the edits he made so its all good. Now begins the waiting game for them to make the car. They originally said 8-10 weeks as a realistic expectation but the salesman said I should probably get it in mid October.
 
  #362  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Kodan View Post
I think ultimately I did better on my deal because of both you an Zillon. It really helped though that we have 3 dealers in our area and two within about 20 miles of my house. I got my deal paperwork signed off on (so I do have it all in writing) and I also got my order paperwork also signed off on by both sides. They even bumped one of their lot cars out of their production queue and gave me priority one(customer sold) status on the production. Guy literally went in their system and clicked on one and was like damn that one went into production today and he then edited the very next slot in their lineup. We both double and triple checked the edits he made so its all good. Now begins the waiting game for them to make the car. They originally said 8-10 weeks as a realistic expectation but the salesman said I should probably get it in mid October.

Now the waiting and the following of the boat.
 
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  #363  
Old 08-14-2017, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Kodan View Post
It really helped though that we have 3 dealers in our area and two within about 20 miles of my house.
This is the answer!

All4's tips and tactics are superb, however try running a lot of that through a dealer like Portland MINI. They have zero nearby competition and are very firm in what they will do for you. You can save a few bucks by driving 3 hours north but in the end not many people do that.

Doesn't take a lot of effort to bounce back and forth between three dealers, but then again you must have a hell of a lot more traffic to contend with on a daily basis.

Best of luck with the new car when it comes, here is your picture >> < <
 
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  #364  
Old 08-14-2017, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Minnie.the.Moocher View Post
This is the answer!

All4's tips and tactics are superb, however try running a lot of that through a dealer like Portland MINI. They have zero nearby competition and are very firm in what they will do for you. You can save a few bucks by driving 3 hours north but in the end not many people do that.

Doesn't take a lot of effort to bounce back and forth between three dealers, but then again you must have a hell of a lot more traffic to contend with on a daily basis.

Best of luck with the new car when it comes, here is your picture >> < <
Thanks for the compliment and thanks for making the excellent point that it is easier to negotiate when there are multiple dealers competing in close geographic proximity. Here in SoCal one wonders how the dealers can stand it -- you don't like the price or the smell of the dealer's coffee, fine, just head on down the road 20 minutes to the next dealer.

This is why strategies and preparation are essential, ESPECIALLY when you're living in a one-dealer town. The internet makes distance dealing more plausible than in times past -- for some brands, like BMW, one can do a deal anywhere and take delivery at the performance center on the East Coast, get a factory tour, and do some track driving.

In the case of MINI, if it's a new car one wants, many are custom ordered with 2-month delivery timelines. For people in a position to order a new car, and in a position to wait for delivery, shopping among dealers can make sense.

The only dealer in town may hold firm on price and let prospects walk -- but that will only work if enough prospects roll over and pay what the dealer demands. If enough customers hang tough, prices will get better in the one-dealer towns. And, it has been my experience, customers ready to do a deal today often end up doing better than the dealer says they can. It's not always the case, but often "no way," becomes, "I think we can work something out," when a well-qualified customer is getting ready to walk.

No matter what the situation, it's always a good idea to be well-schooled, well-prepared, know what you will say yes to, and to know the numbers cold.
 
  #365  
Old 08-14-2017, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
.00191 is the going MF rate now. .00151 is not.

Just a FYI.
interesting. Maybe I miscalculated, twice. But I replicated a couple of the special offers as spelled out on the MINI USA web site and I got .00151 and the numbers in the web site example matched mine to the dollar.

And I know over at BMW Financial Services the top tier MF is also .00151 on their deals.

I'm thinking there's a half point spread that dealers can add, or, of course, the lowest rates are reserved for the most credit-worthy, as in well over 700 FICO.

But, unless I'm calculating stupid (always possible), I'm thinkin' there's .00151 lease rates out there -- or maybe only in my altered reality
 
  #366  
Old 08-14-2017, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Minnie.the.Moocher View Post
This is the answer!
Doesn't take a lot of effort to bounce back and forth between three dealers, but then again you must have a hell of a lot more traffic to contend with on a daily basis.
It took ALOT of effort but I didn't bounce around to all three. The third dealer is ALOT farther away and the one and only experience I had with them was the worst experience I have ever had with any dealer since the early 1990s. They have changed owners since then but I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot pole unless it was a phenomenal deal and then I would still go to one of the other two dealers for after the sale support.
 
  #367  
Old 08-14-2017, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
And I know over at BMW Financial Services the top tier MF is also .00151 on their deals.

I'm thinking there's a half point spread that dealers can add, or, of course, the lowest rates are reserved for the most credit-worthy, as in well over 700 FICO.
I actually didn't even bother to ask them about that today. I was just kinda wore out from all the back and forth. I DID for an absolute fact qualify at the best BMWFS rates and both dealers said that .00191 was the absolute best rate I could get. Was still only .00040 off which was like 3.6% versus 4.5%. Like you said at one point I could try to grind off some more but my heart just wasn't into it. End of the day I got a new lease for 10$ more than my current one and I am getting out of it 4 plus months early. I am happy. Now I just hope I don't die from excitement waiting on the darn thing.
 
  #368  
Old 08-14-2017, 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
interesting. Maybe I miscalculated, twice. But I replicated a couple of the special offers as spelled out on the MINI USA web site and I got .00151 and the numbers in the web site example matched mine to the dollar.

And I know over at BMW Financial Services the top tier MF is also .00151 on their deals.

I'm thinking there's a half point spread that dealers can add, or, of course, the lowest rates are reserved for the most credit-worthy, as in well over 700 FICO.

But, unless I'm calculating stupid (always possible), I'm thinkin' there's .00151 lease rates out there -- or maybe only in my altered reality
Not much I can really say without divulging too much info here, unfortunately.

.00151 does exist, but it's rare to see a dealer use it except on qualifying employee leases or qualifying corporate fleet deals. That's been my experience, and it seems to be the experience across the country, as well, looking at the deal Kodan just cut. .00191 is the rate we reserve for anyone 740+ here at Princeton.

Also, another advisory note on JCW-spec cars. They can take a LOT longer than the typical 6-10 weeks to order. I just had a JCW HT take 4 months from order to arrival. FWIW, rate lock expires at 60 days.
 
  #369  
Old 08-15-2017, 02:40 PM
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[QUOTE=Zillon;4322413]Not much I can really say without divulging too much info here, unfortunately.

.00151 does exist, but it's rare to see a dealer use it except on qualifying employee leases or qualifying corporate fleet deals. That's been my experience, and it seems to be the experience across the country, as well, looking at the deal Kodan just cut. .00191 is the rate we reserve for anyone 740+ here at Princeton.QUOTE]

Thank you Zillon.

So,what does this tell us?

A lot.

Dealers are allowed to add a margin on money factor rates, up to a limit, on leases financed through MINI Financial Services. That added margin, if the dealer can get it, is pure profit for the dealer.

The BEST available rate is usually the rate that is used to calculate the special offers found on the MINI USA web site.

So, who gets the best rate? Well, as the fine print says, only well-qualified leasees -- that means top tier credit, as defined by MINI Financial. Well into the 700's on FICO gets you 'qualified' for the best rate, but it doesn't automatically get you the best rate.

Of course, if the best rate is not offered to you, you have to ASK for it, and, if the answer is no, you have to ask why not. And, to find out what rate you are being offered, you often have to ask because lease contracts do not disclose the money factor rate -- yup, you need to calculate it yourself or ask the dealer.

Some have reported being told that the only time a dealer will give the best special offer rate is if ALL the other terms of the special offer are put into the deal just as spelled out in the fine print of the advertised offer. But the example cars shown in the offers are often at a specific price/equipment point that is difficult to find in the real world or is not a desirable configuration.

No matter what the dealer says, the examples in the special offers are just that, EXAMPLES. A dealer can agree to give you the special deal on any car in stock that qualifies for the offer, yet they can insist that, in order to get the special finance rate, the wimpy dollar amount of 'suggested dealer contribution' is the total amount the dealer will discount the car and the 'cash down' from the customer has to be as specified as well. THIS IS NOT REQUIRED but the dealer CAN use it as an out.

What honest dealers will say is, if they give a deep discount on the car, and the customer also snags available incentives, then bumping the lease rate for a top tier customer is about the only way left for the dealer to hold onto some profit.

So, let's say a rate bump 'only' adds $20/month to a 36 month lease. $20 multiplied by 36 months = $720. That's not a ton of money, but it is a lot of trips to Starbucks, driving through in your new MINI.

What dealers hope is that by the time a customer gets to the nuts and bolts of the financing aspect of a deal, a certain amount of fatigue has set in and the customer is deeply invested in getting the car, so if the dealer hangs tough, the customer will fold on rate.

In many people's experience, the best way to deal with all of this is to look at the total deal -- ALL the moving parts. Know the total amount of dollars you plan to spend on the deal --in the case of a lease that's drive off costs plus monthly payments plus disposition fee at the end of the lease. If you're locked onto a number, then a rate bump can be easily offset by a discount somewhere else in the deal.

If you're the kind of customer who fights hard to get the car at the right price, then maybe giving back $720 is more than you want to do. If that's the case, remember, just as you worked hard to nail down the right deal, so has the dealer. Hard to imagine too many situations when a dealer is about to close a deal and is willing to lose that deal over half a point in money rate. And few customers are willing to walk away from a deal over $20/month for a car they really want and have worked hard to get. And, in many instances, $20/month is close enough for a customer who feels he/she is getting a good enough lease deal on a car they love.

Thus, any dealer worth his/her salt is gonna make the customer work very, very hard for that half a point.

What's your time worth? If it takes an extra hour, you're making $720. If it takes 2 extra hours, that's $360/hour. Good wages if you can get them. But they don't hand out that kind of money without making you work very hard for it.
 
  #370  
Old 08-15-2017, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
But they don't hand out that kind of money without making you work very hard for it.
Yeah I worked really hard at getting the deal I ended up with and while it wasn't a super fantastic deal it was finally one I could live with and I let them make money in a couple of areas(even though they claimed repeatedly they were losing money on me). That's I think the one thing I HATE about the whole buying a car process. Just play fair with me offer me your best deal for my financing rate and lets call it a day. Both sides would IMHO leave the process happier but the dealer wants to grind for that little extra and the buyer wants to grind for that little extra off. I am happy getting a new car ordered that I absolutely will love for 10$ a month more than what I am paying no matter what the rest of the terms were/how much the dealer was making. Had they started off with that offer from the beginning it would have saved everyone a lot of time and frustration though and I know for a fact they didn't lose any money at ALL on the deal.
 
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  #371  
Old 08-15-2017, 05:43 PM
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That tiny bit of rate is typically the last saving grace a dealership has on making any money on a deal.

The salesperson, meanwhile, has already been shafted, since we don't see any of the rate profit, just the gross profit from the margin between invoice and MSRP.

This all comes back to playing fair. Being firm is OK, but being a ****, is not.
 
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Kodan View Post
Yeah I worked really hard at getting the deal I ended up with and while it wasn't a super fantastic deal it was finally one I could live with and I let them make money in a couple of areas(even though they claimed repeatedly they were losing money on me). That's I think the one thing I HATE about the whole buying a car process. Just play fair with me offer me your best deal for my financing rate and lets call it a day. Both sides would IMHO leave the process happier but the dealer wants to grind for that little extra and the buyer wants to grind for that little extra off. I am happy getting a new car ordered that I absolutely will love for 10$ a month more than what I am paying no matter what the rest of the terms were/how much the dealer was making. Had they started off with that offer from the beginning it would have saved everyone a lot of time and frustration though and I know for a fact they didn't lose any money at ALL on the deal.
While I'd prefer to come out with a home run deal on the first pencil - I don't like wasting my time or my clients' time - the reality is that people are conditioned to the back and forth movement until some 'middle ground' is met and a deal is struck.

It depends on the customer. Tell me where you want or need to be, and if I can make it happen, I'll make it happen.
 
  #373  
Old 08-15-2017, 06:14 PM
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Zillon and Kodan, I want to thank you both for all of your recent additions to this thread. Lots of insight to be gleaned from your comments and from your candor.

I do hope that anyone in a position to use Zillon's services for their next car will do so.

Kodan, we share your excitement -- get ready for the long wait. It will be worth it and you landed yourself a good deal that worked for you, and for the dealer.
 
  #374  
Old 08-15-2017, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
While I'd prefer to come out with a home run deal on the first pencil - I don't like wasting my time or my clients' time - the reality is that people are conditioned to the back and forth movement until some 'middle ground' is met and a deal is struck.

It depends on the customer. Tell me where you want or need to be, and if I can make it happen, I'll make it happen.
Many car salespeople have shared with me that experience has shown them if they give their best numbers during the first round either the customer will not believe it, or the customer will think they should have done better, or the customer will take the numbers and go shopping.

Your advice is still good -- tell the salesperson what will get to yes and let the salesperson do what he/she can to make it happen. To make this work, customers have to be prepared to pull the trigger if, in fact, the salesperson gets them there.
 

Last edited by 2017All4; 08-15-2017 at 06:40 PM.
  #375  
Old 08-15-2017, 07:30 PM
Kodan
Kodan is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 152
Received 4 Likes on 4 Posts
Originally Posted by Zillon View Post
While I'd prefer to come out with a home run deal on the first pencil - I don't like wasting my time or my clients' time - the reality is that people are conditioned to the back and forth movement until some 'middle ground' is met and a deal is struck.

It depends on the customer. Tell me where you want or need to be, and if I can make it happen, I'll make it happen.
See though for me that back and forth is the worst part. If my dealer had even come CLOSE to what I ended with I would have pulled the trigger far sooner. I went in thinking I would pay $30-40 a month more than my current lease at minimum had they given me that out of the gate I would have jumped but once I felt like their offer wasn't making sense I made them work more for it. Maybe they didn't think I was really serious or something. Once they knew they might lose me a customer things that were set in stone first sit down with them suddenly weren't so set in stone.
 

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