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Old Yesterday, 10:38 AM
 
Location: D.C.
1,973 posts, read 1,645,475 times
Reputation: 3114

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I only negotiate for "OTD" pricing, meaning "out the door". That is the only number I look at, and I make it abundantly clear to them from the very start. I am fair, I tell them that I don't work for free and I don't expect anyone else to either. But try and slip in a fee at the very end, and it's over for good.


My co-worker bought an Atlas about 2 months ago, her first VW. I initially told her about the dealership near our house which is one of the larger ones. She went, they liked the Atlas, she was texting me as they negotiated, was happy with the price, and then bam, nearly $2,000 in fees. $800 for the doc, $500 for a delivery fee (had to horse trade with a different dealer in PA for the color she wanted), fee here and fee there. I told her to walk away and instead, sent her to the dealership near my office where I've taken my VW's for the past 8 years to be serviced. I sent a text to my service tech at that shop as a head's up, asked that he take care of her instead. She got the car and color she wanted, and saved that $2k.


End of the day, if they want their fee, that's fine, they just deduct it from their cost on the vehicle in general. I don't really care how they itemize their bill of sale to do their profit split accounting. It is OTD for me and nothing else.


That dealer who tried to get her to pay the $2k in fees, that salesman guy had been calling me for over a year. He called me recently to "check in". I told him no way would I be buying a car from them over that treatment. He only knows me because I was about to replace my current GTI with a new Toureq they had discounted substantially in the early summer of 2017 ($50k instead of $65k), as they were discontinuing the T'req in general. Got to the fees and ridiculous trade value on my GTI....and instead went down the block to the benz dealer and bought a used CPO instead while keeping the GTI, all for the same price...
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Old Yesterday, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
10,437 posts, read 10,652,612 times
Reputation: 13450
Quote:
Originally Posted by UpstateJohn View Post
Ive never paid any doc fees, or any other fees they add on. Ive paid sales tax, and tag fees, but doc fees, etc. Nope. Walked out a couple of deals because of it. Of course my local Chevy dealer matched the deal, and doesnt charge those fees so they are m go to Chevy/GM dealer, and the Ford dealer I use, on rare occasion, doesnt charge them either.
Same here. I've even paid the dealer fee for the DMV and the convenience of not having to spend half a day waiting in line. Outside of that, any fee that is a dealer discretion is a deal killer. I'll find the car I want being sold by someone who isn't charging those fees. Unless of course they've made concessions elsewhere in the negotiations that essentially offset the deal. I've not actually ever had this happen and likely don't have the patience to let it reach that point. But if I said up front "either drop these fees up front or offset them entirely by adding to your offer for my trade in" if they agreed I'd at least give them the chance to do that.
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Old Yesterday, 10:54 AM
 
424 posts, read 318,262 times
Reputation: 438
Quote:
Originally Posted by NC211 View Post
I only negotiate for "OTD" pricing, meaning "out the door". That is the only number I look at, and I make it abundantly clear to them from the very start. I am fair, I tell them that I don't work for free and I don't expect anyone else to either. But try and slip in a fee at the very end, and it's over for good.


My co-worker bought an Atlas about 2 months ago, her first VW. I initially told her about the dealership near our house which is one of the larger ones. She went, they liked the Atlas, she was texting me as they negotiated, was happy with the price, and then bam, nearly $2,000 in fees. $800 for the doc, $500 for a delivery fee (had to horse trade with a different dealer in PA for the color she wanted), fee here and fee there. I told her to walk away and instead, sent her to the dealership near my office where I've taken my VW's for the past 8 years to be serviced. I sent a text to my service tech at that shop as a head's up, asked that he take care of her instead. She got the car and color she wanted, and saved that $2k.


End of the day, if they want their fee, that's fine, they just deduct it from their cost on the vehicle in general. I don't really care how they itemize their bill of sale to do their profit split accounting. It is OTD for me and nothing else.


That dealer who tried to get her to pay the $2k in fees, that salesman guy had been calling me for over a year. He called me recently to "check in". I told him no way would I be buying a car from them over that treatment. He only knows me because I was about to replace my current GTI with a new Toureq they had discounted substantially in the early summer of 2017 ($50k instead of $65k), as they were discontinuing the T'req in general. Got to the fees and ridiculous trade value on my GTI....and instead went down the block to the benz dealer and bought a used CPO instead while keeping the GTI, all for the same price...
This is my philosophy of buying cars as well.
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Old Yesterday, 10:58 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
4,489 posts, read 1,499,354 times
Reputation: 6465
Quote:
Originally Posted by burdell View Post
If anyone in any business tries to charge me unexplainable fees, I walk.

The most I'd give a car dealer, and it's being generous, is $100 'Doc' fee to cover their cost of sending someone to the DMV + the actual cost of tag & registration.
Virtually no dealer sends anyone to DMV. They have a direct terminal and other direct connections to do it right from the dealership or office. Doc fees are a 100% scam. And dealers will guard them as jealously as a teenage daughter. I once walked out on an all but concluded $60,000 purchase because they would not delete a $100 doc fee. And they let me.
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Old Yesterday, 11:12 AM
 
708 posts, read 1,255,067 times
Reputation: 854
Doc fees vary greatly from location to location. First, many states regulate the maximum amount and other things about them. Second, even within what a state allows, dealers regionally compete with each other, so in one area, the fee may be high, but somewhere else the fees may be much lower. It is crazy how much this "profit fee" changes from place to place.



However, a number of states do say that if you are going to charge a doc fee, it has to be the same fee charged to every customer, so it truly may be not negotiable.



@NC211 has the right idea, you can negotiate a final price, and not care how the dealer accounts for it. This way, they legally get their "doc fee" and you get the price you want. I generally ask what the doc fee is up front and subtract that from the price I'm targeting so I end up where I want. However, for all those saying "I'm walking if they try to charge me a fee" often means you will walk at every dealer in certain states.


I have no idea what the Government fee was for, unless it truly was a tax of DMV fee (not likely) for the OP.
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Old Yesterday, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
4,489 posts, read 1,499,354 times
Reputation: 6465
Quote:
Originally Posted by z28lt1 View Post
I have no idea what the Government fee was for, unless it truly was a tax of DMV fee (not likely) for the OP.
It's dealer padding because the poor dears have to deal with the government in the process of operating their business.

You can find similar fees on cable, internet, phone and garbage service bills. They are simply padding by the company, but will be elaborately explained in ways any monte dealer would find familiar. A key phrase in the first description is, "Oh, that's required."
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Old Yesterday, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
25,259 posts, read 60,603,872 times
Reputation: 27962
Their other trick is to charge insane amounts for "Dealer upgrades" Alarm systems are common. Additional window tinting. etcetera.

One dealer wanted to charge me $600 for a custom theft protections system. Basically it was an ignition cut out switch operated by an electronic key that they said you could take with you (until the exposed electronic parts ont he key got damaged and you ended up with a car that you cannot start). I refused to pay for it. They said it was already installed not he car. I told them to remove it, I did not want some aftermarket junk spliced into the wiring system designed by professional engineers. I would not buy a car with that switch installed. the said they removed it. Later I found they simply broke it off the mounting and tucked it underneath the dash.


Another car, they had a charge for $20 for a Custom license frame. It was a frame advertising the dealership. I told them we did not want it and we wanted it removed. they said the car was discounted on the assumption we would keep the frame and advertise for the dealership. If we wanted it removed, we had to pay and Extra $150 as their marketing department could no longer subsidized the discount. We simply went to another dealer.
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Old Yesterday, 12:11 PM
 
Location: By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea
55,420 posts, read 39,152,629 times
Reputation: 27585
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
Virtually no dealer sends anyone to DMV. They have a direct terminal and other direct connections to do it right from the dealership or office. Doc fees are a 100% scam. And dealers will guard them as jealously as a teenage daughter. I once walked out on an all but concluded $60,000 purchase because they would not delete a $100 doc fee. And they let me.

Time flies, I guess I'm woefully behind it, been 20 years since I worked in a motorcycle dealership and would talk with car dealers in the dealer line at DMV.
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Old Yesterday, 12:13 PM
 
174 posts, read 43,363 times
Reputation: 317
If they tell you documentation fees are required, walk out. Or, if they put accessories on the car and mark them up 100%-400%. A lot of times you can get those same accessories online, for a fraction of the cost.
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Old Yesterday, 12:14 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
4,489 posts, read 1,499,354 times
Reputation: 6465
Quote:
Originally Posted by burdell View Post
Time flies, I guess I'm woefully behind it, been 20 years since I worked in a motorcycle dealership and would talk with car dealers in the dealer line at DMV.
Small dealers probably do bulk transactions by going to the DMV, but even they seemed to have live terminals last time I looked (in CA and CT, maybe five years ago).

These fees are just gouging with the flimsiest of pretenses. The way "lifetime rates" on phone or cable stay the same rate, but grow $5 and $10 surcharges and fees.
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