The car buying process can be a long and arduous one. The real question is, how do you find the best deal? Well, if you’re not careful, car dealerships will scam you into paying more than what your car is actually worth. In this blog post, we’ll discuss six tricks that car dealerships use to scam consumers and how to prevent these scams from happening to you!
Car Dealerships that Lie about a Vehicle’s Prior Accident History
Dealerships may lie about a car’s history of accidents and offer it as a clean title. In this situation, they are committing fraud because the car is not what you’re expecting to buy. Worse yet, if the vehicle has been in an accident that damaged its frame or other major component parts-which isn’t visible without inspection-the consumer may not be aware of the problem until it’s too late.
Ask for a carfax report to determine whether the vehicle has been in an accident since it was first registered or leased by its present owner, and also if there have been any incidents of airbag deployment.
They Lie to You About Your Credit History
A car dealership may lie to you about your credit history or refuse to provide a copy of your report. This is because they know that the more options available for financing, the less chance there will be that you’ll purchase from them at their inflated price. Ask for all three reports and review each one carefully before making any decision.
Even better, you can request a copy of your credit report before going to the car dealership. By doing this, you can know how much money you have available and what sort of credit score you’re working with before going into negotiations.
They Only Have You Focus on Your Low Monthly Payment
Car dealerships can trick you into a bad deal into offering you a low monthly payment. For example, a car dealership may quote you a monthly payment of $200 per month for 60 months. However, when you add interest charges, the total amount you end up paying far exceeds the car’s value. Pay attention to the entire deal and not just the monthly payment.
They Give you an Unfair Deal on your Trade-in
Another trick car dealerships use is to give you an unfair deal on your trade-in. The problem with this tactic is that it can inflate the price of a new car and leave you in debt for years so that they make more money off your old car.
Before buying, be sure to do research online about how much cars similar to your trade-in are worth. For example, you can go to Kelley Blue Book to get information about what your car is worth. You can also get a private party value to see if you’re better off selling it yourself.
Misleading Sticker Price and Features
It’s important to keep in mind that the sticker price on a car is just an estimated cost and can be misleading. Dealerships may also lie about how many miles are left on a vehicle or what features it has (or doesn’t have) using decals, fabricating documents, inflating car prices, and other fraudulent tactics.
They Sell You a Lemon
A dealership may also knowingly be selling you a lemon car, and you may not even know it. These are cars with hidden problems or defects that will only be discovered after the car is driven for some time. If you find yourself in this situation, you can request help from an attorney that practices lemon law who will go over your options to see if there’s a legal case.
The key to avoiding this scam is researching the car accurately. This includes looking at reviews, checking the vehicle history report from a service like Carfax or AutoCheck, and understanding what features are standard with your car model. Consumers can also check out the Kelley Blue Book values for certain models of vehicles that they’re considering purchasing new. I
Car dealerships are designed to make money, and they’re going to use any means necessary to do so. As a consumer, you should stay vigilant, do your research, understand how car dealerships operate. Think of buying a car as going into battle. You need to arm yourself with as much knowledge before you go in and be prepared.