If you’re looking for the best deal when buying a car at a car dealership, you might be asking the wrong question.
Zach Shefska, Chief Executive Officer of CarEdge.com, took to his TikTok account (@zachshefska) to dispense advice about getting the “out-the-door price” when negotiating for a car rather than whatever the car dealership might be advertising.
The video came out July 26 but has lately been making the rounds on TikTok via users’ For You Page shares. It’s now up to more than 629,000 views and 30,000 likes.
“You want to show the car dealer you mean business?” he asks to begin his video. “Four words: Out the door price. Let me explain.”
@zachshefska When you’re #buyingacar negotiate the out the door price! #cardeal #usedcar #newcar #cardealers #cardealershiptiktok #cardealership #caredge #learnwithtiktok #learnontiktok #learnwithme #buyingacartip #cardealer #carbuyingtips #carbuyingadvice #buyingacartips ♬ original sound – zachshefska
He explains that a car that costs $58,000 after taxes and fees may be advertised at $40,000, masking the true selling price of the vehicle.
“The out-the-door price includes the selling price of a vehicle plus all fees and taxes,” he continues. “Imagine you’re gonna write a check to actually buy the vehicle. That’s the out-the-door price and that’s what you need to negotiate with dealers.”
Shefska used the video as an entry point to tout his website—specifically, the calculator on the site helping consumers to determine the out-the-door price for a new car.
One commenter revealed how this car-buying advice video might have come in handy sooner, confessing they bought a car that “was originally 25,376 but I’m paying 41,563 with 17.60 % APR. It just happened today.”
Someone responded, “Why would you buy a car at 17% interest?” with a laughing emoji and a dead-from-laughing emoji.
Others used the occasion to register their frustrations with the car-buying process.
One commenter noted, “They’ll negotiate but when it’s a high demand vehicle, then no,” adding, “Someone else will pay that price.”
“$449.00 on a Doc fee that takes 15 minutes to [submit] paper work,” another observed. “here in California the maximum amount is $85.00.”
Some viewers said they’ve tried to get the out-the-door price before going to the car dealership and were met with resistance.
“I asked a dealer for the OTD price via email recently and they said they would only give that to me in person at the dealership,” one said, adding, “Shady.”
Someone else remarked, “They always make excuses that they don’t give that price out unless you’re at the dealership.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to Shefska via email.