My R&R Car Adventures

by Adam

Welcome back, New Caledonia misses me.

It was a good and busy R&R.  Achieved a lot: bought a car, met with friends, ate a lot (refer to photos on previous post!).

Sunday morning, went to church, after church, had lunch at home.  In the evening, went for a walk with Julie to see cars at the dealerships.  It’s the best time to see cars, without car salesmen coming to “help” you.  Then we went to Bunnings, got a couple of items I needed for here in New Caledonia (magnetic torch and screwdriver), then went to Peter’s house to borrow his bicycle pump.  At the time, I was convinced that I was going to get the Hyundai I30 Wagon or Hatchback on a novated lease.  This was until we saw a 2 year old Hyundai Accent for sale in Morley, on the way home from Peter’s house.  It was advertised at $13,990 (exc. on-road costs).  Then it got me re-thinking: if I could save money, I should!  So I went home and did some research online, and it was a good deal.  However, in my research, I also saw advertised a brand new 2013 Kia Rio 5 door automatic hatchback for $15,490 drive away, both on carsales and gumtree (from the same seller).  Once on-road costs were added to the second hand Hyundai Accent, it was only about $1000 more for a new car.  I went online, read reviews, watched videos, and it seemed reasonable.

On Monday morning, I contacted the dealership and asked about the price (as they had a few prices advertised).  The manager told me that it was best to come in.  So I went there in the afternoon, and was met by friendly car salesmen…  We went for a test drive, and it was good.  Then we sat at his desk and started discussing about the car.  He asked what colour we wanted, since it was $500 more for metallic paint (white being the only non-metallic choice).  I wanted the white, as it was cheaper, Julie wanted the silver, as it looked nicer.  The nice car salesman said “How about I do metallic for the same price as the white?”.  Wow! Happy!  He showed us the silver car, and then I asked “When you say ‘same price’, what price are you referring to?”.  Then he said “$17990”.  I was disappointed, after seeing $15,490 online.  I told him that I saw that price online, so he let me show him where I saw the price on the carsales and gumtree website.  $15,690 was the cheapest listed.  I was sure that they had changed the prices, as the same advertisement saved on my phone still showed $15,490, until I opened up the page, it it showed a new price.  I queried this and he said that maybe the cheaper one had already been sold as many have been sold over the phone.

Anyway, he put $15,490 on the contract to purchase and we put it subject to finance, as I was going to take it out on a novated lease.  He brought it to the manager, who wouldn’t sign it, called us to his office and was showing us how they are making a loss on it, and that $15,690 is the lowest they can do it for.  I’ve read about these tactics before.  I was prepared to walk out, and get the Accent instead, but didn’t.  It was $200 more than what I had set out to pay.  I asked him to go lower, he said he couldn’t.  I asked him to give me accessories, he said he couldn’t, but could include a full tank of petrol.  The previous salesman said that $30 petrol was included, so a full tank was only a little bit more than originally offered.  He said that if he doesn’t sell it to me at this price, there are many other people who will buy it at that price and then I’ll miss out on this price (I’m sure this is the standard response).  I didn’t walk (everyone says I should have).  Then I thought, if I pay that $200 difference first with cash and then lease the rest, maybe it is ok.  So we agreed and he signed.

Next, it was the options lady.  She tried to sell us paint protection, interior protection, and tinting.  Paint protection and interior protection, for $1900 and tinting for $900.

Paint itself is protection, and now they want to sell protection for the protection?  Fantastic!  Layer of Titanium Dioxide coating – isn’t this what makes white paint white?  As for tinting, I thought that glass already blocks UV?  Later I went home and researched and found that not all UV is blocked, so you can still get burnt.  So I might get some after-market tinting done (for a lot cheaper!).

Anyway, I asked her to demonstrate the interior protection, but the chair she wanted to use wasn’t available, then she disappeared.  In the end, I think if I maintain the paint, I don’t need this special protection.  Interior protection, I could use Scotchgard.  All for a lot less than $1900!

Next step, we went to talk to the finance guy who discussed the rate he could give us.  I liked this guy best, because he talked real numbers, numbers that had meaning, practical and reasonable.  I told him that I wanted to lease, but will consider his offers.

That night, I sent the quote to the leasing guy, who then got a quote back to me 2 days later (on Wednesday).  I wasn’t happy with the quote – he had added in his paint protection, and tinting, which I didn’t want.  I re-did my calculations, as in my previous calculations, I thought that the tax savings were in addition to the amounts I was calculating with, but actually, was already included, so the saving wasn’t as great as I had first calculated.  There is a saving there, but in the end, I decided to go with the more expensive option – to pay it from my bank account rather than go with the lease.  That was the price to pay for flexibility, so that we weren’t bound to the lease.

While I was at the shopping centre on Thursday, I called up the dealership to ask if they accepted personal cheques, but they only accepted bank cheques.  So right away, I logged into my online banking and ordered a bank cheque.  Then the dealership called and said that he could have the car ready for us on Saturday morning.  Then I realised that I might not have the cheque in time!  That it might arrive after I have left!  So I called up the bank and they said that since it’s a direct bank, there’s no branches, so it’ll take 3-4 business days for the cheque to arrive! No! Sad smile

Fortunately, that night, I talked to my parents and they would help get a bank cheque from their bank (which has a local branch), and I would transfer the money to their bank account.  Then all I had to do was cancel the cheque from my bank.  I called my bank up, but they said that the cheque had already been sent (and money withdrawn from my account).  The only way was to print out an indemnity form and send the form and cheque back to them, pay the cancellation fee, and then they would credit the money back to my bank account!  So now waiting for the cheque to arrive so that we can send it back!

Saturday morning, went to pick up the car, nice and early.  We were very pleased with it.  I bought floor mats and then a rubber boot mat (at the advice of mum).  They fit perfectly Smile  Then drove the car back and let Julie practice her driving.  In the afternoon, we went to K-mart and bought a windscreen shade.