Car-buying expert shows how to answer the 5 questions every dealership will ask you ‘like a pro’

@billythecarkid/TikTok HBS/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘Stand your ground’: Car-buying expert shows how to answer the 5 questions every dealership will ask you ‘like a pro’

‘I used to walk out of dealerships all the time.’


Jack Alban


“Lucius, I’m playing this one pretty close to the chest.” It’s a line that Bruce Wayne gives Lucius Fox in The Dark Knight after hatching his plot to fight Joker once and for all for the soul of Gotham.

It’s also a good piece of advice whenever you’re negotiating for a new vehicle, according to car buying expert Billy (@billythecarkid), who the Daily Dot has covered before. In a previous video, he urged folks to never negotiate for a vehicle in person at a dealership, and he echoes this piece of advice, along with five main questions he says every single dealership will ask customers.

He begins, “Today I’m gonna tackle the five questions all dealership salespeople ask everybody who comes to the door and I’m gonna teach you to answer them like a pro.”

1. ‘When Can you Come in?’

Billy says that the end goal of any car dealership is to get customers to come in before they’ve done their due diligence. This way they can glean as much information from you as possible. Then, they place you into signing on the dotted line for a car with a price that benefits them but doesn’t necessarily give you the best bang for your buck.

“Minutes after they verify the vehicle,” he says, “they’re going to hound you about coming in for a test drive and looking at it in person and doing everything in person for that matter.”

Billy says this is where you need to be strong. “Let them know that we’re just window shopping right now and we’ll let them know when we get to that next step,” he shares.

2. ‘Do you have a trade-in?’

According to Billy, the second-most commonly asked question pertains to the appraisal of a trade-in you may have. You’ll almost always get more money if you sell your car privately to another person, or, as Billy also suggests, checking rates from CarMax and Carvana as good options to try.

“It’s just a ploy to get you down to the dealership to make you purchase,” he claims. “In my opinion, this is a pretty easy objection to overcome.”

He advises, “Present anyone of those to the dealership and say, ‘This place was able to give me numbers site unseen can you at least match their numbers?’”

3. ‘Monthly payment goal?’

Billy advises against going into the muck of discussing what you want to pay monthly for a vehicle. According to Billy, the only thing you should be thinking about is what the cost will ultimately end up costing you.

“Your salesperson’s always going to try and get you fixated on the monthly cost instead of the overall cost,” he says. “That’s because the monthly cost can manipulated by the finance department.”

4. ‘Finance or cash?’

This is where playing things close to the chest will really work in your favor. Billy states that you should walk into a dealership with a pre-approval amount from another lender and interest rate. However, he says you should hold onto this card and allow the dealership to show you what type of financing they’re going to offer you.

“Next, the dealership’s going to ask you finance or cash,” he says. “Now in my opinion, unless there’s some benefit on the price or a discount or incentivized rate the dealership’s offering, I don’t have any reason to use the dealership financing but for negotiation purposes, I like to dangle that carrot in front of the salesman’s face.”

5. ‘Down payment?’

Again, Billy says you should keep things quiet on the down payment front—don’t let them know if you’re planning on putting any cash down. See what kind of pricing options they’re offering for the vehicle before you let them know that you’re willing to fork over any money. This way they can show your hand and then you can counter back.

“Basically, with almost any question the dealership asks you, always play dumb and mum is the word,” he says.

He gives some parting advice in the caption, writing, “Start by emailing, phoning or texting with the dealer. Until you locate the perfect vehicle and have everything just the way you want it, you shouldn’t step foot in the dealership.”

Several commenters who responded to Billy’s post shared some of the tips they had themselves for car buying.

“Trade in is always a no. bring your own financing. stand your ground. don’t fall for fees and addons. out the door price,” one person wrote.

Another agreed with the “bottom line” argument Billy gave in his piece, writing, “I just want to know how much the car will be in total. So I can compare to other dealerships/financing options”. Once they give you a price just pay cash!”

However, some people said that selling cars privately or using services like CarMax and Carvana didn’t necessarily work for them. One user said, “Carmax and carvana are 1500.00 lower than the local dealerships on my truck.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to Billy via Instagram direct message.

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