Does timing matter when it comes to buying a new truck? The short answer is yes. While you wait for the right time to make your purchase, a little strategy and patience can get you a much better deal.
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Best months to buy a truck
If you’ve seen the slew of car commercials every year around the holiday season, you may already have an idea that December is the best time of year to buy a truck.
Just like for most retailers, Black Friday is often a critical day for car dealers. After Black Friday and through the end of the year, dealers and their sales staff are looking to make quotas and maximize their annual bonuses. This can lead to better deals for you, especially if you do your research and play your cards right.
Dealers want to end their year with a higher number of overall sales compared to the previous year. This means December is crunch time to get their sales numbers up. They also want to be able to move out the current year’s inventory to make room for new models.
Although December is usually the best time of year to buy, starting car shopping in January doesn’t mean you have to wait 11 months. There are some months that are better than others to buy.
In general, the months with the most discounts (in addition to December) are:
- May: During the month of May, specifically around Memorial Day weekend, many dealers and automakers offer savings in addition to other types of incentives, such as financing deals.
- October: October tends to offer more leeway when negotiating car prices. It’s close to the end of the year, and dealers have a greater incentive to move current models off the lot to make room for new inventory.
- May to September: You may find better deals when you shop for a car or truck between May and September. Many car dealers offer summer sales and savings opportunities during this period.
Best holidays to buy a truck
Holiday sales events are also a great time to buy a new truck. These sales are usually linked to discounts, as well as special financing and rebates. If you’re looking for an affordable vehicle, consider shopping around these holidays:
- Memorial Day: Memorial Day is the starting point for the summer season, and many retailers try to increase their sales volume during this time.
- July 4: Starting on the 4th of July, dealers begin to see a greater mix of current models and next year’s models. Not only can you potentially get a great deal, but there will be more variety for you to choose from on the lot.
- Labor Day: Labor Day weekend is the sweet spot for both competitive pricing and car selection. Even though you may save more to make a purchase in December, you’ll likely have a wider selection of vehicles this time of year.
- Veterans Day: In the fall, Veterans Day also offers great opportunities to find great deals on trucks. If you are an active duty military member or veteran, you may qualify for special discounts.
- Black Friday: Get ready for Black Friday and December savings by doing your research beforehand and finding out which model you are interested in so that you are prepared to take advantage of the best deals.
- New Year’s Eve: You might lock up a lot on a car around New Year’s Eve. This is usually the last day for sales teams and dealers to make their annual quotas.
Before you go to the dealership, consider working with your bank or credit union to get pre-approved for a car loan. You should also estimate what your monthly payments will be so you can compare your pre-approval to the dealer’s financing offers.
If you are looking to trade in your current vehicle, do some research to determine your vehicles value and find out if you can get a better deal through a private sale.
Best days of the week to buy a vehicle
Most dealerships are open all week, or at least six days a week, and the day you buy a vehicle can make a big difference. The busiest days of the week for traders are weekends as more people have these days off.
On weekends, sellers often juggle multiple buyers, and you may spend a long time in the finance office. However, some traders close their doors on Sundays, so Monday can also get quite busy.
If you are looking at a dealer that is closed on Sundays, choose to go on a Tuesday or Wednesday so you have more time to ask questions.
Finance & Insurance Editor
Elizabeth Rivelli is a freelance writer with over three years of experience covering personal finance and insurance. She has extensive knowledge of various lines of insurance, including auto insurance and property insurance. Her byline has appeared in dozens of online finance publications, such as The Balance, Investopedia, Reviews.com, Forbes and Bankrate.