So there we were on Sunday, gazing down the barrel of another busy week getting kids to all their activities but with no car to do it in. Well that’s not quite correct, Peter has a car but he also has a job which requires him to have a car.
How did we manage that? You may well ask. Quite a dreary story really. We put both cars up for sale; lost faith after a month of no real inquiries so didn’t bother to look for a replacement. Then in one mad week both cars sold and here we are, up the proverbial creek in a barbed wire canoe.
We drove around car sales yards on Saturday looking at cars, one of my least favourite things in the world to do. It would have to be right up there with going to the dentist. Just as a dentist will stand over you with steely grit and determination ready to extract that rotten tooth, so it is with car sales people. Only it’s not a tooth they are extracting it’s their next commission cheque and it’s coming out of your wallet.
To make matters worse this laborious task was made even more onerous given that Molly and Lulu were staying with Pete’s sister for the night. We would have much rather been enjoying our time without encumbrances albeit for one night. Oh you can put away that judgmental look; we love our kids we simply value any time we can get to just be a couple and nothing more.
Now here’s small tip for those of you just setting out on the unenviable task of car buying. The absolute last thing you want to do after taking a car for a test drive is admit that you actually like the car to the salesperson or before you can say “drive away with no more to pay” they will whip you into their office where they will say things like:
“What can we do to put you into this car today?” This is actually code for “Please buy this before your friends warn you against buying from me.”
Another one I hate is:
“Let me talk to my manager about what we can do for you.” In dealer language that means, “Let’s see if you’ll fall for this figure.”
And the one I got the other day with a car I liked was:
“Don’t take too long to decide, I have someone else looking at it tomorrow morning.” Probably code for, “The mechanic is going to carry out some repairs on it in the morning.”
By Saturday night we had narrowed the field to two cars and with more research on Sunday we have decided which one we will purchase. As per life’s standard little ironies it will be the first car I looked at last week.
Which brings me to another wee tip that has nothing to do with buying cars and everything to do with living a happy life: STOP thinking there might be something better around the corner and you need to pursue it because if you don’t you could miss out on the ‘deal of the century’. Chances are it won’t be the ‘deal of the century’. Chasing rainbows takes far too much time and energy and causes way more stress than you need. When something acceptable presents itself go with it and use your spare time to pursue pastimes that leave you contented.
Do you have a car buying experience you would like to share?