IBJ Podcast: Pete the Planner goes car shopping during an auto-industry shortage


Anyone who has driven past a car lot knows that dealers have virtually no inventory. So what do you do if you need a car?

IBJ personal finance column Peter “Pete the Planner” Dunn found himself in just that predicament recently. And he tells host Mason King that shopping for a car was like nothing he’s experienced before.

Buyers have no negotiating power. Zilch, he says. And that’s because there are as many buyers on a lot looking for a vehicle as there are cars. In fact, dealers are pre-selling the cars they’re expecting to receive.

The upshot, Dunn says, is to try to avoid buying or leasing a car right now. But if you have little choice, you might want to listen to this conversation before you head out to the lot.

For more, read Dunn’s latest IBJ column: Pete the Planner: Time bigger purchases (if and when you can)

Click here to find the IBJ Podcast each Monday. You can also subscribe at iTunesGoogle PlayTune In, Spotify and anyplace you find podcasts.

Looking for another podcast to try? Check out IBJ’s The Freedom Forum with Angela B. Freeman, a monthly discussion about diversity and inclusion in central Indiana’s business community.

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5 thoughts on “IBJ Podcast: Pete the Planner goes car shopping during an auto-industry shortage

  1. I had a dealer call and offer me a similar truck to the one I ordered 9 months ago that someone decided not to buy.

    5k markup to MSRP

    3k in dealer tint and paint protection

    Heightened Doc fees from normal.

    40k for a 32k truck? hard pass

    1. ‘Don’t blame you, James M. The thing to do is to start calling around the state to smaller dealers and see if they have one that’s unaccounted for.

    2. Bob, unfortunately the smaller dealers are adding 10k to the same vehicle when they happen to get one.

      Downside to supply side economics I suppose

  2. There has been a shift in the last 5-10 years from seller’s having all of the information about a product/service (and thus leverage over the buyer) to an abundance of information at a buyer’s fingertips at all times (now buyer’s have more leverage). The trouble is – most buyers aren’t using information to their advantage. It’s no longer a “Let the buyer beware” environment, it’s a “Let the seller beware” environment. Even in a market of shortages (houses/cars, etc.) you should be using information to your advantage as a buyer.

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