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Tricks of the Trade: Consumers Should Watch Out for These Common Dealer Tricks

» Posted July 22, 2016Resources | Share This Post

When you are shopping for a new vehicle, you know that negotiating with a car dealer can be a major hassle. Most people feel like they cannot trust car dealers, and there is a good reason for their suspicion.

Car dealers often engage in unscrupulous behavior that is designed to enrich their own bottom line at the expense of customers. Business Insider summarizes some of the different kinds of scams and schemes used by car dealers that car buyers should be on the lookout for as they make their vehicle purchases.

Because of dishonest car dealers, consumers sometimes end up with vehicles that don't perform as promised. If you are having issues with your new car, an Orange County lemon law attorney may provide you with some legal options for relief. The attorney can help you explore all possible legal solutions.

Car Dealer Tricks That Cheat Consumers

According to Business Insider, some of the tactics used by car dealers that end up costing consumers money include:

  • Lying about big and small things: The majority of car dealers who were interviewed admitted to lying about a wide variety of things, ranging from whether there is a particular color of vehicle available to whether someone else is interested in the same car or not.
  • Shell games: Car dealers may find out what your hot button issues are and target you in those areas. For example, they may offer you what you want for a trade-in but then raise the price they charge for the new car.  Or they may manipulate the financing to get the monthly payment you're looking for by stretching out the length of the loan.
  • Bait and switch: Car dealers offer a vehicle at a low price, but then claim that car is sold when you show up at a dealership. They'll push aggressively to get you into a more expensive car when you show up to buy the cheaper one that was advertised.
  • Focusing only on monthly payments: Car dealers will offer to get you into a car for a certain monthly price and will end up hiding back-end products in the purchase without your knowledge.
  • Quoting low prices on trade-ins. Dealers often offer less than the car is worth to try to see if you're willing to accept their offer. If you don't accept and they end up raising the value, this can give you the illusion of a victory and can make you more likely to buy a new car.
  • Change figures on the lease agreement or purchase agreement. This is literally stealing, but it happens when car dealers change numbers around on lease contracts to enrich themselves and cost you more money. Dealers can also intentionally make “mistakes” in a purchase contract on things like loan terms or purchase price. These mistakes, of course, always favor the dealer.

You should not have to face financial loss because a car dealer or manufacturer sold you a new vehicle that turned out to have serious issues. Find out from an attorney what your options are under California’s lemon law.


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