Car Buying for Beginners

Haggle over the price of the car and the terms of the loan to keep your monthly payments in check.

photo illustration of woman buying new car
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Over the course of 2021, a global microchip shortage triggered supply shocks affecting a wide array of products, from smartphones to home appliances. But no industry has taken a bigger hit than the auto industry: In August 2021, for example, reduced inventory at Ford dealerships led to a 33% decline in U.S. sales compared with the previous year.

With increased demand amid the shortages, many car buyers are paying top dollar for their new or used vehicle—and sometimes for the car loan, too. If you’re looking to purchase and finance a car before supplies return to normal, do some comparison shopping to be sure you’re not overpaying for your vehicle or the loan.

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Michael Korsh
Intern, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Korsh is a recent graduate and incoming graduate student at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He majored in journalism with a minor in psychology, and his graduate degree will be in the Medill Investigative Lab specialization of the MS in journalism program. He has previously interned for Injustice Watch, the Medill Investigative Lab and Moment Magazine, and he served as the print managing editor of North by Northwestern student newsmagazine. Korsh became a Kiplinger intern through the American Society of Magazine Editors Internship Program.