I had my first real car-buying experience when I was around 22 years old. I was single, kid-free and just starting my career. My car needs were really simple – cheap, compact, cute…just something to get me to and from work and occasionally out with friends. Of course, now that I’m a mom, my needs have changed drastically. Now, when shopping for a car, I have to consider not only the safe transport of precious cargo, but also our ever changing and evolving travel needs. From carpooling needs to packing equipment to nearly excessive miles from travel sports schedules, these needs become paramount when shopping for a family car.
I recently spent time at my local CarMax learning more about the car buying experience – this time, as a mom with many needs. CarMax is the nation’s largest used car retailer and what’s particularly special about shopping at CarMax is the inimitable way they go above and beyond to help families find the cars that are best for their unique lives. Here are just a few more ways CarMax helps make the car buying process especially special:
Getting to know you and your needs
When I first arrived at CarMax, I was welcomed by the team and introduced to Leroy, one of their top Sales Reps-and I quickly learned exactly why he earned that title! First, he took the time to listen and understand the things I wanted and needed, as well as the needs of my family with their equally busy lifestyles. We talked about how I’d be using the vehicle – how much I traveled, what activities were my kids into, how much space I needed (for transport, equipment, etc.), even down to how many car seats I needed to place.
You take as long as you need
The last thing you want is to feel rushed as you try to choose a vehicle that will make you happy. Leroy informed me that it can sometimes take several weeks for a car buyer to find exactly what they want and that’s perfectly ok with the team at CarMax. Additionally, if a car you love is at a CarMax across the country, you can ship a car from one CarMax store to another, with no obligation.
They really want to make sure you’re ultimately happy with the purchase you make and whether it takes you 3 minutes or 3 weeks, you have the freedom to take as long as you need. This no-pressure sales environment makes for a much more comfortable car buying experience.
You put the car to the test
In fact, with any vehicle you are looking at, they not only allow you to take it out on a test drive (or several), but they are also on board with letting you do almost anything you need to be absolutely sure this is the car for you. For a mom shopping for the perfect car, this can mean you go on ahead and install your car seats to make sure they fit like you’d like. Or even going so far as pulling seats down or out to make sure the trunk fits all of the many things you know will end up back there at some point.
Oh the dreaded car buying negotiation process! I guess there are some people who love negotiating, but I am certainly not one of those people. CarMax skips the pricing games and makes it easy to find the right car for you at a price you can trust. Your car’s nohaggle price is the same online as it is on the lot, and they offer flexible financing options you can choose from.
The CarMax mission has always been to make buying a used car easy, and they feel the same about financing. You can count on the financing process being quick and transparent. Most decisions come back in just minutes and if approved, you choose the available offer that suits you best. Most importantly, you’re not tied to any financing option CarMax find for you. If you can find better financing elsewhere, you have three days to change it, penalty free!
No buyer’s remorse
Fact: According to a national CarMax Survey,1 in 4 car buyers reported that the worst decision they made when buying a car was having ‘paid too much for a new car that depreciated.’ One particular statement Leroy made that put the entire car buying process into perspective to me was the fact that “A car is not an investment. It is a tool” and he assured me (as he does his own customers) that his goal is to help consumers find the best “tool” to help make their lives easier and as functional as can be.
Plus, let’s just say you’ve gone through the entire car buying process – chosen your vehicle, test drove, packed your trunk, purchased and drove your new-to-you car off of the CarMax lot. A couple of days later, for whatever reason, you find that’s not the car for you. Well, CarMax also offers a 5-Day Money-Back Guarantee, which means you can then bring it back for a full refund!
Finally…sometimes it’s just the little things….
I loved the fact that no car is sold exactly “as is.” Meaning, if you find a stain on a seat, they will remove it before you drive off. Any service needs of the car are taken care of and your car is presented to you with a level of quality and style you can feel great about.
CarMax has 180+ locations across the country & growing. Visit your local CarMax to test drive and compare a range of new or used cars, all in one place!
Have you purchased a car at CarMax? Share your experience below!
Disclosure: This conversation is sponsored by CarMax. As always, all opinions are mine alone.