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More Car Dealer Scams To Be Aware Of

Jan 21, 2008
In one of our previous articles we listed the "Top 5 Car Dealership Scams To Avoid," but it doesn't stop there. This article continues with a few other car dealer scams that we've heard happening around the car market. Again, there are a lot of credible car dealerships that won't try these but it's always a good thing to know these in case you get a dirty car dealer or salesman.

6. The Dealer Mark up Scam

This is an unnecessary fee that the dealer charges for no reason other than greed. This fee can be seen on the orange sticker marked on the manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP). The additional dealer markup is nothing more than requiring more money for no real reason. They can include all kinds of extra fees in the additional dealer markup.

When you see an extra dealer mark up fee, ask the dealer to get rid of it. If they refuse, it is pretty much up to you, but remember that if you do pay the extra dealer markup, you are overpaying for no real reason.

7. The Payoff Your Loan Scam

This is when the dealer offers to pay off the balance of your current car loan no matter how much money you still owe. It is a common sales strategy. When the average buyer hears it, they think that by purchasing a new car with a new dealership, they will automatically owe no more money on their current car. That couldn't be further from the truth.

What really happens is that the dealership does help you get out of your current contract; however, they normally are forgetting to tell you how high your fees are going to be for breaking the lease agreement with your old dealership. You will now be responsible to pay fees that are in the thousands to make up for it.

You also will not be able to refinance for a new car until those fees are paid. Of course the dealership can add the cost on to your contract with them at a substantially higher rate. The dealership only agrees to this deal because they want to get more money off of your current car. They aren't really doing anything for you at all.

The dealership will also give you far less then the car is worth on the trade off. Basically this scam works because they will up your monthly fees, and then sell your trade in for a more money than its worth. The dealership then extends your monthly payments so that they can make it appear that you are paying a small amount monthly when you don't even realize that you have committed to an extra year of payments.

To avoid this scam, you have to bite the bullet and ride out your current lease until the end. If you are really determined to get a new car, then you should try selling your current car on your own. Just sell it so that the buyer just takes over the lease payments.

8. The Used Car Sold "As Is" Scam

This is when a dealership will sell you a car that has been in a car wreck, but they will tell you that the car has been completely refurbished. When you see the car it has a sticker on it that says "as is" on it and no warranty is included with your purchase. This is the dealer's way of telling you that you can't bring the car back, you are assuming all risks for the car, and that it is not under warranty.

To avoid this scam, don't buy a car without a warranty or one that says "as is" on it. By doing this, you might as well buy a car from a stranger on the street with the same deal.

9. The Bounced Check Scam

This is when you walk into a dealership with a bank draft and the dealership charges that they can't accept your draft because your bank bounces checks often so they now refuse checks from that bank. Of course, this leaves the table open for them to get the extra money they want by offering to sell you a car at a higher interest rate.

You can avoid this scam first by getting your drafts from First Again Auto Finance. Then let the finance manager know that you are aware of the scam that they are pulling and that First Again Auto Finance is in the business of giving loans so the checks don't bounce.

10. The Forced Credit Application

If you are hoping to pay for a car outright or in cash with a bank draft or check that is what you should do. Some dealerships will not let you. You will hear one of these lines so that they can try and get you into paying monthly terms for more money. "State laws require that you must fill out a credit application before I can sell you this car." Or "Everyone that buys a car from us fills out a credit application first." Or maybe "It's the company's policy."

If you hear any of these lies, then know what's going on. When you are paying cash why would you think that you need to fill out a credit application? It doesn't make sense. No state will force you to apply for credit when paying cash. Would you have to fill out a credit report if you want to buy a sofa or groceries while paying cash? See how silly this is. To avoid this scam, just laugh in their faces.

If you can identify these scams then you stand a great chance of saving a ton of money down the road on your new car. Stay tuned for our next two posts as we explain some other car dealership scams that have the "Special Offer" tag on them.
About the Author
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