When is the best time to buy a new car?

11 minute read Published on Jun 19, 2024 by BrokerLink Communications

When is the best time to buy a new car?

If you’re thinking of buying your first car or even just buying a new car, then you might be wondering when the best time to buy it is. The reality is that buying a car at certain times of the year or even days of the week can offer some additional benefits. Keep reading to learn the best time to purchase a new vehicle.

The best times to make a car purchase

If you want to get the best possible deal on a new or used vehicle, then there are a few dates that you should know about. Once you know about these dates, you can strategically plan when to visit your local car dealership to purchase a new vehicle.

By buying a new car at one of the times of the year listed below, you might be able to save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on a new vehicle:

Near the end of the calendar year

Generally speaking, one of the most beneficial times to buy a new car is near the end of the calendar year. Why? Many car dealerships have end-of-year sales. As the year comes to a close, many dealers are feeling the stress of meeting their yearly sales quotas, and so you may notice that dealerships tend to have lots of deals and offers available at this time. Please note that end-of-year sales may begin as early as the late fall and end in late December.

Near the end of each month

If you can’t wait until the end of the calendar year to buy a new car, then consider waiting until the end of the month. Similar to how many dealerships in Canada have yearly sales quotas, many also have monthly sales goals that they want to hit. If you visit a dealership right before the month is up, a dealer might be more willing to offer you a better price in the interest of improving their sales record.

When new car models are released

Planning to buy a new vehicle when the latest car models get released is another great option. Typically, most automakers release their newest models in August or September. As these new cars are introduced to dealerships across Canada, dealers start reducing the prices of the last season’s models. Although they are no longer the latest model offered by that automaker, they likely still have plenty of fantastic features.

Keep in mind that this method only works if you are comfortable purchasing a vehicle from the season prior. If you want the latest model, then you might be better off waiting until the end of the year or the end of the month. In addition, while many auto manufacturers release their new models in August and September, this isn’t a guarantee. So, if you are already set on a specific make of car, stay up to date with the brand’s latest releases in case they release a new model earlier in the year, such as in the spring.

During the off-season

Shopping for a new car during the off-season is another time that you might be able to get a better price for your vehicle. What we mean by the off-season is as follows: If you want to buy a convertible or sports car, the off-season for car sales would be the winter since convertibles aren’t typically driven during the winter months in Canada.

If you are looking to buy a 4-wheel-drive pick-up truck or SUV, then summer would be the off-season since many buyers want to buy this type of vehicle in the lead-up to winter due to the hazardous road conditions. Ultimately, if you are interested in purchasing a specific type of vehicle that is more popular in a particular season, visit your local dealership in the off-season. Since the demand will be lower, there might be more wiggle room or more discounts on the price.

What is the best day to go car shopping?

Now that you know about the best times of the year to buy a new car, what about the best day? Believe it or not, the data suggests that there are certain days of the week that might be more beneficial for car buyers than others. Whether you’re in the market for a new vehicle or a used vehicle, keep reading for some of the best days of the week and month to buy a car:


Generally speaking, weekends are typically the busiest times for car dealerships. In contrast, the early days of the week, like Monday or Tuesday, are usually much quieter. Visiting the dealership on a quieter day will make for a better overall experience. This is because the staff will have more time to answer your questions and take you for a test drive. On top of this, you will have more time to negotiate a sale price that you’re happy with.

Long weekends

Long weekends, such as three-day weekends, are another great time of the month to buy a car. Although visiting a dealership on an average weekend may not be the wisest decision if you’re looking for the best price, visiting a dealership over a holiday weekend is an exception. Why? Many car dealerships have special and exclusive offerings on holiday weekends. For example, you might find all kinds of sales on Canada Day, Labour Day, Black Friday, and Boxing Day.

Labour Day is generally considered a good weekend to buy a new car since it may also coincide with new models being released by automakers as well as dealerships trying to get rid of last year's models. Buying around Black Friday or Boxing Day could also be advantageous since these holidays are near the end of the year when car dealers are trying to meet their quotas.

The best time to buy a new car is before you need one

As much as you can try to be strategic about when you buy a new car, the best time to make a vehicle purchase is before you need a new vehicle.

Waiting until your current vehicle is on its last legs is never a smart decision. If you do this, you could end up rushing the purchase process. Given how big and important a car purchase is, you should give yourself plenty of time to research and test out different options until you find the one that’s right for you. If you end up having to buy a car quickly because of a lack of planning, you could be forced to buy a car that you don’t love.

Even worse, if a car dealer can tell that you're unprepared or borderline desperate to walk away with a car, they could take advantage of this and refuse to negotiate on price. Therefore, before your current car lease is up or your vehicle breaks down for good, plan ahead by doing independent research online and scheduling a meeting at your dealership.

It is also worth noting that if you wish to trade in your old car for a new one, it will have much better resale value if it’s in good condition. This is yet another reason not to completely run your car into the ground before finally deciding to buy a new one.

Finally, buying a new car before you desperately need one means that other important processes won’t be rushed either, like registering your car or getting car insurance. Speaking of car insurance, if you need help purchasing a new auto insurance plan, reach out to BrokerLink today. One of our licensed brokers can give you expert advice on the best types of coverage for your needs.

What to do after buying a new or used car

Once you’ve taken the plunge and purchased your new car, there are two very important steps you must take: buying a car insurance policy and registering your vehicle with the transportation authority in your province. We outline both of these processes below. Remember that you will need to buy or update your car insurance plan as soon as possible, ideally before you even drive off the lot. You can find out more about insurance grace periods in Alberta and young drivers insurance here.

What to consider when buying a car insurance policy

We outline a few important factors to consider that will help you find the right car insurance plan for your needs:

Buying from an insurance broker or insurance company

The first consideration is who you want to buy your car insurance policy from. In Canada, customers can purchase policies through both insurance brokers and insurance companies. No matter which option you choose, you will be in good hands, and your purchase will be perfectly safe and secure. That said, many customers enjoy the ease and convenience of working with an insurance broker who shops around for them and can give them an objective opinion on the best policy for their needs.

How much you can afford to spend on a policy

A second factor to consider is how much money you can afford to spend on a car insurance plan. The reality is that car insurance policies can be expensive, especially if you add a wide range of coverages. Your budget will ultimately determine many aspects of your policy, including your coverages, policy limits, and deductibles. If you need help keeping your rates low, contact BrokerLink for tips on how you can save money on your premium.

The coverage you choose to add to your policy

Some types of coverage are mandatory, such as third-party liability car insurance, but many other types are optional, like accident forgiveness coverage. As the policyholder, you get to choose which types of extra coverage to add, if any. You will get to set the limits and deductibles for each type of coverage.

Mandatory auto insurance coverage in Canada

Auto insurance is a legal requirement everywhere in Canada. That said, the coverage requirements in each province vary. In Ontario, all drivers must have the following four types of coverage:

Third-party liability coverage

Liability car insurance will pay for the cost of an accident if you cause one. In other words, if the insurance companies deem you at fault for a collision, you can file a third-party liability claim, and your insurance provider will help pay for the associated expenses.

Expenses may include legal fees, repair bills, and medical fees. Ontario drivers must have no less than $200,000 worth of liability coverage in their car insurance plans, though many choose to purchase more than this.

Accident benefits coverage

Accident benefits coverage can cover medical or rehabilitative care if you are injured in a car accident. More specifically, if you are injured and seek medical attention, any expenses not covered by health insurance can be paid for by your car insurance policy. Such costs may include prescription medications, physical therapy, and rehabilitation. Lost wages and funeral fees can also be reimbursed through a policyholder’s accident benefits coverage.

Direct compensation coverage

Direct compensation coverage will pay for property damage repairs for your car if your car is damaged in a collision. In order to receive a payout from your insurance company, you cannot have been at fault for the accident.

Uninsured automobile coverage

Uninsured automobile insurance is designed to protect drivers who get into hit-and-run accidents or accidents with at-fault motorists who do not have car insurance policies. It can also be claimed if you get into an accident with a driver who doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the cost of the collision.

If you choose to drive your new car without updating your current auto insurance policy or buying a new policy, you could face serious repercussions. For example, if you are caught driving without insurance, you could be fined between $25,000 and $50,000, have your vehicle impounded, and have your driver’s licence suspended for up to a year.

Registering your new or used car in Ontario

The second step you need to take after buying a new car is to register it in your province. In Ontario, the car registration process takes place through the Ministry of Transportation. Car registration is a relatively straightforward process as long as you have the necessary documents and information. Therefore, you should begin the registration process by collecting the following documents and pieces of information:

  • A valid Ontario driver’s licence
  • A completed used vehicle information package (if applicable)
  • Proof of purchase, e.g. a receipt or bill of sale
  • Proof of car insurance from an insurance company that operates in Ontario
  • The original vehicle permit from the seller with the transfer portion completed
  • The licence plate portion of the permit, if you have the licence plates already
  • The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) number (learn how to check your VIN number here)

Once you have the necessary documents, all you have to do is visit a ServiceOntario Centre near you to officially register your vehicle. You can make an appointment online or simply show up and wait in line. After filling out the necessary paperwork and showing the documents you’ve gathered, you will pay the vehicle registration fee and then be issued a new licence plate, vehicle permit, and sticker.

Please note that the cost of registering your car in Ontario is as follows:

  • $120 for one year or $240 for two years in Southern Ontario
  • $60 for one year or $120 for two years in Northern Ontario
  • $42 for one year in Southern Ontario and $21 for one year in Northern Ontario for motorcycle registration

In addition, if you are buying a car from a dealership rather than from an independent seller, the car dealership might be able to take care of the registration for you.

Contact BrokerLink to find out more

Buying a new car is a big decision, and like most people, you probably want to do everything in your power to get the best possible deal on your vehicle purchase.

Thankfully, one way to do this is by planning when to purchase a new car. Data shows that there are certain times of the year when car sales tend to be cheaper than others. If you can afford to wait until one of these times, you could end up saving a good chunk of money.

Speaking of saving money - if you want to save even more money on your car purchase by lowering the cost of your auto insurance plan, reach out to BrokerLink today. We have a whole team of dedicated and licensed car insurance brokers who know the ins and outs of the industry and can give you all sorts of tips on ways that you can reduce your rates.

For example, a BrokerLink insurance advisor can suggest ways to modify your policy that will lower your premium, such as by raising your deductibles, and outline the different types of car insurance discounts that are out there, from safe driver discounts and driver’s education discounts to winter tire discounts and anti-theft device discounts. A broker can even talk to you about bundling, which is when customers buy two or more policies from the same provider and get a discount on both policies. Ultimately, there are tons of ways that you can save money on car insurance, and BrokerLink can explain them all to you!

As brokers, we can also shop around for a car insurance plan that offers the best coverage at the most competitive price. A few types of car insurance coverage that a BrokerLink insurance advisor can help you find are:

What are you waiting for? Get started on your car insurance journey today. Give us a call, check out our website, or visit us in person at any one of our locations across Canada. No matter how you choose to get in touch, a licensed broker will be available to answer your questions and provide you with a free car insurance quote. Speaking of free quotes, you can request a free quote right now using our online quote tool. It only takes five minutes!

Get an auto insurance quote [phone]