Frequently Asked Questions
Here you'll find a list of some of the most common questions about CarBuckets.
Group Buying For Cars
How are buckets grouped?
CarBuckets are grouped first by the city/market where you live, and then by the make (i.e., Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, etc.). Within each bucket, there are a variety of different models (i.e., Camry, Prius, RAV4, etc.) all corresponding to one brand. Once a bucket is filled, dealers will go in and price each model at the trim of their choosing.
How long does it take for a CarBucket to get filled?
We close each CarBucket on the third week of the month or when a bucket is full of committed car buyers, whichever comes first. However, generally speaking, it will likely be on the third week of the month. It's strategic.
First, it allows us to gather and analyze all monthly incentive data, which begins to pour in slowly at the beginning of the month. Monthly manufacturer incentives are basically promo codes for the automotive industry. They're always changing! As soon as these incentives/promo codes start trickling in, we'll load them onto our site. You'll get to select your qualifying incentives, which will then be applied as discounts to your final CarBuckets price.
Secondly, you'll likely get steeper discounts waiting for month's end. It's no surprise dealers are more incentivized to give better deals at the end of the month.
Lastly, size does matter. We want each CarBucket to be as big as possible before presenting it to our registered dealers. Why? The bigger the group, the bigger the savings.
What happens if I join a CarBucket after a bucket has closed?
Not a problem. When one bucket closes, another bucket opens. However, keep in mind that we close each bucket on the third week of the month. If you join at the very beginning of the month or at the very end of the month, it's likely that incentive data is still pouring in. If that's the case, we'll message you when all incentives are in, so you can select your qualifying incentives. No one walks away from online promo codes. By Step 3, you'll know if incentives for that month are in.
Why do I only have five days after getting my CarBuckets price to test drive the car?
Dealers are constantly turning over inventory. Therefore, to keep business moving, they can only hold your car for 5 days. Otherwise, they'd want you to put down a deposit. Of course, if there are extenuating circumstances that prohibit you from making the 5-day window, reach out to us, and we will try to work with you. We are people too and we know that things pop up.
Can I join multiple buckets?
You can join as many CarBuckets as your heart desires. Keep in mind, there is also an added benefit to joining multiple buckets.
Benefits of joining competing brand buckets in same city
There are many different factors that affect car prices. Different brands have different manufacturer incentives and manufacturer production rates – both affect how low dealers can go when pricing new cars. If you like two brands of cars, we suggest joining two buckets to see which manufacturer offers the more attractive price. Just remember, if you join two CarBuckets, you are on the hook for two test drives.
Benefits of joining multiple same-brand buckets in nearby markets
Dealer inventories vary from market-to-market and week-to-week. Our advice is to join two neighboring markets to see which one offers the better value. Again, you need to test drive at each winning dealership to avoid a no-show penalty.
Choosing Your Car
Why do I have to choose two color options?
By choosing two color options, the searches broaden. All dealers have different inventories, so by selecting two color options you give all dealers the opportunity to bid on each customer.
Why do you need my credit card?
Your credit card is simply a hold to show your commitment in taking the test drive at the winning dealership. Your card will not be charged if you take the test drive. However, if you do not show at your test drive appointment, the credit card on file will be charged a $50 no-show fee.
Putting down your credit card information tells dealerships you are serious car buyer, willing to commit to a test drive at their dealership. This incentivizes dealers to outbid other local dealers for your business. What car dealers do not want is to give extremely attractive offers just to have you and others in the bucket say thanks, but no thanks, I do not want to buy a car anymore.
Bottom line: CarBuckets is free to use, and there is no obligation to buy the car. You are simply required to take a test drive at the winning dealership during the 5-day sales event.
How do I know my credit card information is safe?
We do not hold your credit card information. We use Stripe, which has the most stringent level of certification available in the payments industry. Feel free to learn more about Stripe's security levels, click here.
Can I reschedule my test drive?
Yes, you can reschedule your test drive on the Car Buyer Dashboard. You can edit your appointment time for any time slot available with the 5-day sales event.
Financing & Pricing
How do you get to my price?
At CarBuckets, we pride ourselves on full price transparency. Final price details will be emailed to you at the end of the second bidding round. In that email, you will fully understand how we calculated your final CarBuckets price. We take you step by step, starting with your new car's MSRP. From there, we incorporate cash rebates, dealer fees, dealer discounts, etc… up until we get to your final price, before taxes, tag and title.
Our CarBuckets' Dealers are prohibited from any form of price bumping at the time of your dealership visit. They must honor the price they quoted you during the final bidding round, for the car they quoted you on.
What if I want to lease a car?
CarBuckets is still the place for you. Your monthly lease payments are actually based on the purchase price you negotiate. So, join a CarBucket, select the lease option, and lock in your group rate. The group rate will knock down your monthly payment for the lease.
How do I know I am getting the lowest group sales price for my new car?
When we come together, big things happen. When you buy a large amount of anything, the individual unit price tends to be lower. It's simple economics: buying in bulk saves. At CarBuckets, we took that economic principle and created a patent-pending technology that introduces the concept to the retail automotive industry. Car dealerships are able to give greater discounts to the CarBuckets buyer than when selling to a single buyer. We've created a platform for you and for dealers harnessing the power of volume sales.
OK, I got the email with my price. What happens next?
You have five days from the time you receive that email to test drive the car at the winning dealership. Once you've completed the test drive, the dealership notifies CarBuckets, so you don't get charged the no-show fee. There is no obligation to buy the car.
If after the test drive, you are certain this is the car you want — well, you've got one smokin' price locked in thanks to the benefit of Group Buying for Cars. From there, it's business as usual.
I want to trade in my car. How do apply that value to the sale of my new car?
Great, we can help you with that. Join CarBuckets and go through the process. The key to buying or leasing a car is to first lock in the lowest purchase price possible for your new car. CarBuckets can help with that.
Once you've got that price, find out how much your current car is worth, before heading to the winning CarBuckets dealership. Go to Kelley Blue Book and fill out the trade-in appraisal questionnaire. This is the same tool most car dealers use to determine the value of used cars. Print it out, and bring it with you so dealers know you're an educated buyer who isn't there to mess around.
Ultimately, the price of the trade-in is determined by the dealership. However, prices from Kelley Blue Book are reliable ranges and give great estimates allowing you to have an educated conversation with dealers.