Some of the Common Ways that a Dealer Will Mislead You
Unless you work with cars or it’s a serious avocation, you can easily be victimized by a less-than-honest car dealer. It’s not just the price, either. Here are some of the most frequent tactics that care dealers will use to try to take advantage of you:
- The old “bait and switch”—This one is as old as time. The dealer advertises a vehicle that meets all your needs, at a price that can’t be beat. Unfortunately, when you get to the dealership, the car is “no longer available.” Be careful if the dealer then tries to sell you one that’s “just as good or even better.” To avoid this happening, call the dealer before you go look at the car and confirm both the offer and that the car is still there. It’s also a good idea to bring a copy of the advertisement with you.
- Hidden fees or false statements about the total price—This happens on a regular basis—the salesperson quotes you a specific price and you verbally accept. When the deal is printed up, though, it includes hundreds or thousands of dollars in fees that were not previously discussed. If this happens, walk away and notify the Federal Trade Commission. It’s a violation of law.
- Unwanted options or accessories—Take a close look at the sales contract and make certain it doesn’t include things you didn’t ask for or didn’t want, such as extended warranties or rust-proofing. If the salesperson told you there would be no added cost, make certain the sales agreement reflects that.
- Financing irregularities—Don’t let the dealer mislead you about your eligibility for credit…know your credit score before you go to the dealer. Consider getting your loan from your own bank or credit union.
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At the Cintron Firm, LLC, we offer more than 14 years of experience to people in New Jersey facing a broad array of legal challenges. Send us an e-mail or call us at 201-791-1333 or (201) 535-0323 to set up an appointment.