What You Should Know About Car Shopping: 1/12/18

CARS.COM — If buying a new car two weeks into the year sounds like a good idea, you're ... mostly out of luck. Dealers have been working hard to flush out their model-year 2017 inventory as they make way for 2018 models, so discounts are only going to get harder to come by as January drags on. That said, there's still hope — and if you can't wait to hit the lots, we're here to help. Check out our guide below for a quick start to shopping right.

Related: What's the Best New-Car Warranty for 2018?

What car should I buy? That depends on a lot of factors, but our reviews can help. Check out our recent additions: 

Which cars have the best deals right now? Check out our top deals for January. As always, your discounts may vary, so check with your dealer for specifics.

Should I buy new or used? Read up on the pros and cons of each. If you go used, review our used-car buyers' checklist and consider whether you want a certified pre-owned car.

How much can I afford? Read our primer. Then use our Price Comparison Tool while you shop to find what's right for you.

Should I finance, lease or pay cash? That depends, but this might help you decide.

How do I get the best lease rate? Bone up on common lease terminology, plus our tips.

How do I get the best financing rate? Our game plan lays out some advice. While you're at it, here's what you need to know about auto loans and what you'll need to get one.

Anything I shouldn't do when I'm at the dealer? Yep. Avoid these pitfalls.

Should I get an extended warranty? That depends. Here's what you need to know.

How do I sell or trade in my old car? Learn how to prep your car before you sell it to a dealer, how to trade it in and how to deal with taxes and other considerations. If you still owe money on your old car, read this. Finally, if you want to sell it private party, here's how to create the picture-perfect ad and how to seal the deal.

Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

 

 
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