Showing posts with label Cars. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cars. Show all posts

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Game

The past few weeks Papa G had us searching for a new truck for him.
This resulted in having to play "the game".
I hate this game.
You know what I am talking about, the whole used car game.
All of the ridiculous rules:
Don't act like you like the car.
Don't say that you like the car.
Don't smile at the car.
or the salesman.
Don't show any emotion.
Don't give him too many details.
Don't let him know you saw it online and were interested.
Don't tell the truth right away.
Don't look at any other cars.
Don't try to negotiate right away.
Be firm.
Be prepared to walk away if they say no.
Don't have too much hope they will change their minds.
Don't act like you are so disappointed and would actually pay more than what you originally said because you love the car and it's perfect.
They can't know that.
Don't point.
Don't blink.
Don't breathe.

You know this game?
Hate this game.

Let me give you some background information on the history between Mr. B and I and car shopping. Last summer we traded in my 2 door car for a newer 4 door car. We barely negotiated, we barely checked all the features of the car. It was an 08, 4 doors, real low miles and drove nice. We bought it. We drive off the lot with it, get on the cruise control. No big deal we are only driving to FL and back. It's only an 08 why would we expect it to have power everything, Aux port to play iPod and have cruise control?? Apparently having cruise would just put it over the limit. Also, just discovered it doesn't have power mirrors either. So, uhh, clearly we aren't exactly the best contestants for this game, but we were just getting married and this was our first big buy and you live and you learn.

So we needed a truck to help us with the move and my dad was ready to buy a truck so it was a win-win.
He thought it was great to get a truck in Florida that way it hadn't been through the winters.
Only problem is he is in NH.
Therefore the car shopping was up to us.

Let me remind you, I hate this game.
Papa G is real good at it. It can be embarrassing at times because, to me, he just looks rude.
But hey, "it's all part of the game".

This version of the game was a little different.
We weren't the buyers.
Can they know this bit of information or is it top secret?
Can they know it was for him up in NH and not for us in FL?

In this game sometimes you need to bluff.
The plan was:
Tell them your dad from NH is buying you a truck. Don't tell them you're moving. They can't know that the truck is going to NH and not staying in FL because they might try and scam you. If they know you are taking it far away, something could be wrong with it and they won't tell you because it's really inconvenient to take it back to them so they don't care.

Lots of overanalyzing.
Which I typically do with about everything.
But this game is not my forte.

Plan seems easy, right?
We go to car dealership #1.
Under pressure, we forgot about the plan.
New plan is we {Mr. B & I} are looking to buy a truck.
Mr. B tried to play the game.
I hid and give him looks because it is ridiculous, we are losing the truck and we can be a little more flexible and honest than that.
I receive dirty looks back and "just wait, this is part of the plan".

The plan backfired.
This guy was not impressed with us at all.
He tells us he has nothing else for us.
We walk away.
As we were leaving the lot we found one that he didn't mention to us.
This plan failed big time because apparently he thought we looked to young to be able to afford these trucks.
This assumption would totally be right, if we were actually the ones buying it.
We go back in and tell him, Papa G is buying the truck for us.
It was night and day difference in his attitude.
Still no success, he wouldn't budge on the price.
So we walk away.
Lame game.

Lesson learned: Important to mention Papa G is buying the truck.
Car dealership #2:
The salesman is a nice guy.
Forget about Papa G's plan and told him the truth that the truck is for my dad.
Bad idea.
Sales guy doesn't want to sell to us because what if Papa G doesn't like it or finds something wrong with it that we didn't notice.
I assure him that he trusts us, I am taking and sending him video and it is fine.
Sales guy is still unsure, but nice and willing to help us regardless.
But he doesn't budge much on price.
We walk away from the most beautiful truck.
Hate this game.

Lesson learned: Don't say it is for Papa G.
Car dealership #3:
Go with Papa G's plan.
Papa G is buying us a truck.
Appear very spoiled.
We found a truck we loved, it was perfect.
We find out it's listed out of his price range, I call Papa G ready to me the mediator for negotiation.
Huge failure.
In the salesman's eyes I am sure the situation went something like,
"Ugh, Daddy won't pay anymore than than x amount of money",
therefore he is thinking, sorry daddy won't buy you this nice of a truck spoiled little bratts, your loss not mine.
Why, oh why would he want to negotiate the price when in reality it looks like we are looking out of what daddy wants to pay for his princess??
Horrible horrible plan.
Too awkward to change our story.
We walk out.
Lost a great truck.
Despise this game.

Lesson learned: Don't say Papa G is buying you a truck.
Car dealership #4:
Papa G calls ahead, informs them of the real plan.
Minus the fact that the salesman had ride in the back seat with us during the test drive repeating over and over how nice the truck is.
Thank you. We are aware. Thank you for the privacy.
Minus the fact that when we brought it to the mechanic down the street to make sure the dealership was honest the salesman had to come with us.
Minus the fact that the salesman was hovering around the mechanics, continued telling us it was a great truck and was driving me nuts.
It all worked out in the end.
After lots of trial and error, lots of traveling, lots of gas, lots of test driving, it was a success.
A beautiful truck, a good deal, lessons learned and a win-win situation.
Papa G is much better at this game. Even when it's over the phone.
He is a salesman after all. So it's kind of expected.
Practice makes perfect, I guess.

I still hate this game.
Why can't everyone just be honest and upfront?
Why can't the cars be priced accurately, you just say you want to spend x amount of dollars, show me what you have. Boom. Done. Thanks. Bye.

But it's not. So we live, learn and eventually drive off with a car knowing you most likely got screwed somehow, but hope that, for the most part, it was the right decision.