Should You Use a Car Buying Service, Car Buying Concierge or Car Broker?

Maybe you had a friend or co-worker tell you they just bought a new car using a car buying service, a car buying concierge or an auto broker, and you’re wondering - should I do that next time?

These services help customers avoid the worst part of buying a new car -- dealing with salespeople and dealerships. You simply call the company, let them know what you want, and they handle the rest.

Difference between auto broker and car buying services / car buying concierge

One key difference between a car broker and a car buying service or car buying concierge is - who pays. Typically with auto brokers, dealerships will pay the auto broker a “finders fee.” This can range from $500-$2,000 depending on the type of car you’re buying.

The problem for the customer is that they won’t know how much the auto broker is getting paid. Because of that, you never know if you’re buying a car from the dealer with the best price or the one who paid your auto broker the most. That is why most people will steer clear of auto brokers.

How to pick a car buying service or car buying concierge

Next comes picking the right car buying service or car buying concierge. Couple of things to consider -

  • Cost - Some car buying services charge as little as $500, and some as much as $1,200. Some charge more based on the MSRP of the vehicle you want to buy. Some charge for extras like handling trade-in values, finance payments or lease payments. Your best bet is to find one that charges a low flat rate that includes everything.

  • Experience - Some car buying services are staffed with people who have worked in dealerships so they understand the dynamics of sales departments and car deals. Others are staffed with individuals who have never worked in the auto industry. Verify that the car buying service is staffed with individuals that have years of experience in the auto industry and in different positions.

  • Service - Some car buying services take care of the entire purchase. They will find the vehicle that with the features you want, negotiate a great purchase price, handle your trade-in value, negotiate finance rates or lease payments. Others simply help you find a vehicle, and others will find the vehicle and negotiate the price but nothing else. It is important to make sure you find a car buying service that will help you with every aspect of the purchase process.

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