I looked on internet forums and came to know that people in other cities have been paying a certain dollar amount for a particular model of Honda Civic. I want to quote that price to the dealer here but I am uncertain how to answer if he asks me how I reached this number. If I tell that its by searching forums on the internet he can come up with any answer.

Is there any answer that keeps my credibility?

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    You are asking a very basic question about negotiation. It is a good question. The answer is never, ever explain yourself. Just state the words "$12,000 is a fair price for this." That's it. Whatever you say, the other person will (obviously) come back with "reasons why you are wrong". (What else would they do?) – Fattie Jul 17 '18 at 12:01
  • and how do i answer when the other guy says "How did you come to this fair price? " Should i just say "Doesn't matter' – Captain Jack sparrow Jul 17 '18 at 19:18
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    It doesn't matter what you say, just be polite yet firm. ANYTHING you respond, he will have an answer. If you say "I checked the market" he will say "you should have looked at X Y Z". If you say "I've been selling cars for 50 years and I know the price" he will say "oh, things changed this week". You "can't win" if you get in a supposed rational discussion! Just say "$12,000 seems like a fair rpice." If he says "No", politely thank the guy and leave. It's that easy! – Fattie Jul 17 '18 at 20:31
  • Make up a good story. Tell that you quoted that in another dealer, for example. They will not go to the trouble of verifying it. – Gabriel Diego Jul 18 '18 at 1:14
  • You might also be interested in my answer on another question about getting the best deal on a car purchase here: money.stackexchange.com/questions/615/… – JohnFx Jul 18 '18 at 2:31

The way you ask the question alarms me. Look at the dealership, how many cars are on the lot? How many are within a short drive? How many cars are for sale withing a 50 mile radius? Living in all but a rural area, the answer will probably be in the hundreds of thousands of cars for sale within a short distance.

Despite car dealership acting as this is not true, there is a far less qualified buyers than there are cars for sale. While the salesman will pretend it is not true, you are the final decision maker in a car transaction.

When it comes to credibility, most car salesman have close to zero. I have meet a few that are the exception to that rule, but most have none.

What I would do, in your shoes, is simply this. Hi, you have a X year Honda Y for sale. I will pay no more than $Z for that car. Lets see if we can make this deal happen. Decide your price ahead of time, and don't budge from it. Pay attention to what is important. If they want to charge you $1000 for pin stripping and $300 dealer who cares! All that is fine provided the final price is less than the price you are willing to pay.

If your price is very low, the negotiations make take place over a week or so. You will certainly have to leave the dealership without purchasing the car on the day you test drive it.

Remember that fear and anger are a car car salesman's friend. Don't let them get you emotional. Always remember there are at least a 100 different suitable cars just a short distance away.

In the end, how you got your number is irrelevant and I would point that out. It is just a tactic to get you to question your judgement.

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  • Very good points. If i may add I plan to do all of this over email since in person this will stretch to 5 hours. – Captain Jack sparrow Jul 17 '18 at 19:17

Question: "How did you get to that number?". Answer: "Don't worry about that.". (Which is just a more polite way of saying 'I'm not telling you, and there is no way that I would ever tell you').

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Maybe you could tell them that you got the number from a friend who got it from a friend. I did that once and got no further questions.

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