If you want to drive, then you are going to have to go car shopping at some point. A lot of people don’t really know what they’re getting themselves into when going car shopping. Take the mystery out of looking for a new or used car by following the handy article below.

Go into the dealership with a bottom line price in mind. The salesman might try to focus on the monthly payments or financing terms, but your goal should be to get the price you want on the car you want. You can always negotiate the financing terms later, or even finance with your own bank outside of the dealership.

Before you set foot into a dealership, do some research online. Check nearby dealership’s websites and record their listed price on the vehicle you want, as well as any special deals they might be offering. Having this information at your disposal will be a valuable asset when it comes time to negotiate with a salesman.

If you are in the market for a used car, a great way to tell if the speedometer is correct is to look at the gas and brake pedals. If someone says the car has 30,000 miles on it, and the brake and gas pedals are worn, it is a good indication the odometer was turned back.

Don’t forget to calculate ownership costs when selecting a new vehicle. That bargain priced SUV might not be such a good deal if it means you will be spending twice the amount you used to on gasoline to drive it. The same goes for sporty racing style cars or models favored by car thieves that both can come with increased insurance rates.

Research the value of your trade-in. Not only do you need to research the best price for the new car you would like to purchase, but you also need to know how much your trade-in is worth. Do your homework and find out the retail and wholesale values of your trade-in. Aim to get the retail value from the dealer.

Consider selling your car privately, rather than trading it in for the new car you want. You will almost always get more for your car through a private sale than you would through a trade in. Even if the dealership makes it sound like they are giving you a great trade in value, they will likely raise the price somewhere else to make up for the difference.

When overbearing salespeople are difficult for you to handle, take someone with you when you shop. A friend or family member can offer negotiation help and remind you of important information you will need to know. Talk to this person ahead of time, and make sure they understand how much you are willing to spend and what you have to have in a car.

Make sure to take your time. Even if you are really excited about buying a car, don’t run out and buy it on the same day. Make sure that you have taken the time to do research on safety, repairs and other factors before doing something you might end up regretting.

When buying a compact or subcompact car, make sure that it has enough room for each person who will drive it. The car may be your daily driver, but it may not have enough leg room for others in your household. If there is a chance that someone else will drive the car occasionally, bring them along while shopping.

Test drive more than one car before you buy it. Any new car is going to feel fantastic if you’re used to driving an old one. Think seriously about how the ride feels, where the buttons are located, and how much of the road you are able to see. Test-driving more than one car will help you realize where you want to be.

You should now have a lot of your questions answered about shopping for a new or used car. Just take all of the advice that the article above gave to you and use it well. Shopping for a car doesn’t have to be that stressful if you just know what to do first.