How Dealers Rip You Off

Recently I was at a used car dealership to buy a new vehicle. After moving to a new city to start a new job soon, I wanted a car that would not only look good, but drive reliably, last a long time, and be priced a reasonable rate. Luckily, the first dealership I walked into had accommodating staff, free coffee, and seemingly great deals for the new year. There was also a vast inventory of shiny Maseratis and Mercedes that tempted me to buy as soon as possible. While I probably won’t be shelling out nearly fifty thousand dollars at this point for those used cars, the process made me wonder. What traits of a used car salesmen should a person in my position be looking out for? Is it the lines they roll to make me laugh or gain my interest? Or are they simply playing a numbers game to get my business? Let’s look at what experts warn any used car buyers to watch out for while they visit their local dealership.

Watch out for shady dealerships.

Bad Car Dealers

We all know what bad car dealers appear like. They could be wearing a plaid suit that screams for attention, offer you a can of soda to keep you engaged, and fire off their seasonal deals to get you to buy within the hour. They can seem too brash, crack poorly constructed jokes, and sound too pushy to get you to buy a car that’s too good to be true. According to what the experts say, it’s best to trust your gut when you’re talking to these people for the first time.

The first thing to do when you talk to a car salesmen is to ask for the car’s history, what their warranties are, and whether or not you can bring the car in for inspection. They should readily have the full history of fixes and mileage of each car, provide a long term warranty to test the car, and allow customers to bring their cars to mechanics that are independent of their particular business. If the person seems to give you a blind eye or discredit your need for these services, swiftly walk out the door. A wisely organized car dealership should not be hiding any important information about their cars from their customers. Falling victim to any words of affirmation about the car’s perfect quality is how dealers rip you off. Stand strong while you have this conversation and make sure it’s done as soon as possible.

The second step to take is to watch out for the dealership’s financing plan. A bad car dealer will gladly provide you payback plans that can include extremely high interest rates. These rates can range from 19% to even a hefty 29% each month after purchasing the car if you don’t have enough funds to buy it outright. If you’re wondering why these rates are so high, the dealership is a small business and might be using tactics that aren’t the wisest to gain as much of their sale as possible. This is another way you can get ripped off as the used car is likely nowhere near the total price you will be paying once the financing plan is over. Save your hard earned coin by avoiding these financial traps that dealers promote in case someone falls for it.

Car Dealer Tricks

By now you’ve noticed all the traits that make a poor used car dealership. To balance out the negativity, I’ve compiled the top aspects of a great and reputable dealership to remember. If you find that a dealership is showing these signs, keep them around and don’t hesitate to provide them your business. If a dealership has a good selection of inventory, their cars should be cleanly shown inside and outside the lot, well displayed, and all from recent model years. After you take note of these cars, focus on how the staff interacts with you and every other customer. The salespeople, service advisers and top managers must possess excellent communication skills and a high level of product knowledge. They should make you feel at ease and comfortable to ask any questions you wish while you shop around for your dream vehicle. The facility should also be up to date and just as nice to look at to show off their cars. Lastly, since most car shoppers now spend more time than ever before to do online researching during their purchase process, the car dealership should have an actively running social media page, up to date website, and a database of their cars in inventory so you’re clear of what their values are. You’ll also be able to look at what customer reviews are and what points of the business may be a hassle to deal with.

Used car dealerships can provide great deals if you’re careful.

Drive For Your Life

Buying a great used car doesn’t have to be a stressful or scary process if you do your homework before jumping into a long term commitment. The car should be well-made, last you for several years, and the service of the dealership of your choice should facilitate a great post purchase relationship. Remember that sometimes bad car dealerships will provide you attractive financing plans or cars that seem to have no mileage at all. Make sure you look up the car’s exact history and push for plans that aren’t requiring to “pay less now” for much more later. It’s even better if you go car shopping with another person you trust so they can gauge how the business feels for them as well. They should be able to sense if the staff are knowledge and reliable than be swindling or hard to approach.

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