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03 May 2006



ar shopping or buying. As some of the long time readers of the News knows, last year in July I bought a new car, a Chevy Blazer. It's great in every respect and I really like the vehicle, except at gas-time. I've played around with getting a new, smaller car and one that was easier on gas consumption.

Back when I bought it, gas was of no real concern... today is a little different. I am not going to pay $60 to fill the tank. It's just crazy. So I decided to take the plunge and head out for a new car. The first thing the salesman did was stick out his hand to shake mine. Obviously an old dealer trick to lull you into complacency. But like a dope I returned the shake. I think they learn to access a person in car-buying school by their handshake. A good firm handshake means the buyer is a no nonsense person and knows what they want. A limp handshake means the person is a push-over and will pay sticker price, no bartering, no hassles, let's jack the car up another thousand.

I drove into the Saturn dealership feeling quite confident that I had the upperhand. I was going to take charge right from the beginning and show the salesman that I was a person not to be messed with.

Then I realized that it was the beginning of the month and probably one of the worst times to look for a car deal. Why? Because the slate is wiped clean for the salesperson from the previous month. They are not apt to negotiate much at the beginning and you should look towards the end of the month when they are desperately trying to make their quota.

The second mistake was driving in with an SUV and thinking I was going to get top dollar towards a trade-in. Everyone was trading in their SUV for gasical reasons. Not a good strategy car for price dickering. I was beginning to feel as though I may be operating from behind an 8 ball.

To make a really long 4 hour story short. I drove back out of the dealership in the same car I drove in with. I may have over-done the "I am not going to be screwed" theory a little too much. I may have had myself soooooooo psyched up that I was not going to allow the dealer to get the upper hand that I was oblivious to whatever deal he layed in front of me. Dunno... I need to re-psych myself and give it another whirl today.

Observations and Questions
How do you feel about car buying? Any tips for strategies, that really work?

Birth Announcements and Dusty Death Notices
Born this day in 1903, Bing Crosby, (Harry Lillis Crosby), Tacoma WA, crooner/actor (White Christmas, Going My Way). And in the death notices we find in 1294, Jan I, Duke of Brabant/Limburg/poet, dies.
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