Scams to be Aware of When Buying, Selling or Trading Your Car.
by Grande Tomas | May 31st, 2020
When you’re buying a car, it’s important to be aware of the many scams that are out there. If you’re not careful, you could end up paying more than you should for your vehicle or even worse, wind up with a lemon. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the most common car buying scams and how to protect yourself from them. Stay informed and you’ll be able to buy your dream car without having to worry about getting scammed!
The Bait & Switch
The first thing you need to be aware of is the “bait and switch.” This is when a dealer advertises a car at a low price but then tries to sell you a different, more expensive model when you get to the dealership. To avoid this scam, always be clear on what model and make of car you’re interested in before you even step foot on the lot.
If the dealer doesn’t have the model you want in stock, be firm and ask to speak to a manager. If they still can’t give you what you want, it’s time to walk away and find a different dealership. Don’t let them pressure you into buying a car that’s not right for you just because it’s what they have on the lot. Stick to your guns and don’t let them take advantage of you.
The “bait and switch” is just one of many car-buying scams out there. But if you’re armed with knowledge and prepared to stand your ground, you can avoid being taken for a ride.
Another common scam is “yo-yo financing.” This is when a dealer offers you a low-interest rate to get you to sign on the dotted line, but then changes the terms of the loan after you’ve already agreed to it. To avoid this, always read over your loan paperwork carefully before you sign anything. If you’re not comfortable with the terms, don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal.
Car buying can be a stressful experience but armed with the knowledge of these common scams, you can go into the process more confidently. Do your research ahead of time, and don’t let yourself be pressured into making a decision you’re not comfortable with. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Trust your gut, and happy car shopping!
The Odometer Rollback
If you’re buying a used car, be sure to watch out for the “odometer rollback.” This is when a dishonest seller changes the odometer reading to make it look like the car has less mileage than it actually does. This can be difficult to spot, but there are a few things you can look for. One way to spot a possible odometer rollback is to look for mismatched tires. If the car has new-looking tires but they’re a different brand or size than the other ones, it’s possible that they were put on to replace worn-out ones with more mileage.
Another thing to look for is an unusually clean interior. If it looks like the car has been recently detailed, it could be a sign that the seller is trying to hide something. If you suspect that the odometer may have been rolled back, the best thing to do is to have it checked by an independent mechanic. They will be able to tell you for sure if the mileage on the car is accurate.
DID YOU KNOW: The Lemon Law
Did you know that there’s a law in some states that protect buyers from being scammed with a “lemon”? If you buy a new car and it turns out to be a lemon, you may be entitled to a refund or replacement. The laws vary from state to state, so if you’re thinking about buying a new car, be sure to do your research beforehand.
In general, a “lemon” is defined as a new car that has a serious defect that affects its safety, value, or use. If you buy a new car and it turns out to be a lemon, you may be entitled to receive a refund or replacement vehicle from the manufacturer.
The Lemon Law is just one of the many laws in place that exist to protect consumers from being taken advantage of.
The Test Drive Trap
If you’re taking a test drive with a salesperson, be aware that they may try to pressure you into buying the car on the spot. This is called the “test drive trap.” To avoid it, simply say that you’re not interested in buying the car today.
I once had a salesperson try to pressure me into buying a car on the spot after taking it for a test drive. They wouldn’t take no for an answer and kept trying to negotiate with me. I eventually had to walk away and find another dealership.
If you’re ever in this situation, just remember that you’re not obligated to buy the car just because you took it for a test drive. Say that you’re not interested and walk away if the salesperson is being pushy. There are plenty of other dealerships out there that would be happy to help you find the perfect car without any pressure. Test driving should be fun, so don’t let it turn into a stressful experience.
The Extended Warranty Scam
An extended warranty is an insurance policy on your car. It covers repairs after the manufacturer’s warranty expires. Many people think they’re a waste of money because most cars don’t have any major problems after the warranty expires. And if you do have problems, you may not even use the extended warranty because it likely won’t cover all of the repairs.
What’s more, you can usually get a better deal on an extended warranty by buying it from a third-party company instead of the dealership. So if a dealership tries to sell you an extended warranty, know that it’s probably not in your best interest. Just say no and move on.
The Trade-In Trap
When you’re buying a new car, the dealer will often try to lowball you on your trade-in. This is called the “trade-in trap.” To avoid it, research the fair market value of your trade-in before you go to the dealership. That way, you’ll know if the dealer is trying to give you a raw deal.
The trade-in trap is just one of the many ways that car dealerships try to take advantage of customers. If you’re not careful, you could end up paying way more for your new car than you need to. Do your research before you go to the dealership, and don’t let them bully you into a bad deal.
When selling your car locally it is important to be aware of a few things. First, do your research and know the value of your car. Second, find a reputable dealership that will give you a fair price for your vehicle. And finally, don’t let the dealer take advantage of you! If you follow these simple tips, you will avoid the trade-in trap and get the most money for your car.
If you want to avoid the trade-in trap Driveway Auction is the best way to sell your car locally. We get real buyers to compete for your vehicle. More competition equals more money. With our auction process, you are in control, set the reserve price, and decide when to sell. To learn more about how we can help you avoid the trade-in trap click here.
The Engine Light Tape Trick
Criminals will use electrical tape to cover lights on car odometers before selling them. This is done in order to make the car appear to have fewer miles than it actually does. The scammers will then replace the odometer with a different one that has lower miles. This makes it difficult for potential buyers to know how many miles the car has actually been driven.
If you’re considering buying a used car, it’s important to be aware of this scam. Always inspect the odometer carefully to make sure that it hasn’t been tampered with. If you have any doubts, you can always ask a mechanic to take a look at it for you. Stay safe out there!
To avoid being scammed, it is important to check the carfax report or get a third-party inspection. This way you can be sure that you are getting accurate information about the car’s mileage. By being informed, you can protect yourself from being taken advantage of by these unscrupulous criminals.
The Low-Ball Trade-In
The “lowball trade-in” is another common scam. This is when a dealer offers you a very low price for your trade-in, even though they know it’s worth more. They do this in hopes that you’ll be so upset about the low offer that you’ll pay more for the car you’re buying. To avoid this, always do your research ahead of time and know how much your trade-in is worth.
If you’re not sure how much your trade-in is worth, there are a few ways to find out. The first is to check its Kelley Blue Book value. You can also look up the prices of similar cars online, or ask a friend or family member who knows something about cars. Once you have a good idea of what your car is worth, you can negotiate with the dealer from a position of strength.
Remember, the dealer is not your friend. They’re in it to make money, and they will take advantage of you if they can. Don’t let them lowball you on your trade-in! Do your research and know what your car is worth before you go to the dealership. That way, you can avoid getting scammed and overpaying for your new car.
The Add-Ons Scam
The “add-ons” scam is one to watch out for as well. This is when a dealer tries to sell you extra services or products that you don’t need, such as an extended warranty or gap insurance. These add-ons can end up costing you a lot of money, so just say no if you’re not interested.
If a dealer pressures you into buying an add-on, just walk away. There are plenty of other dealers who will be more than happy to sell you a car without all the extra fuss. Remember, it’s your money and you have the right to spend it however you see fit – so don’t let anyone else tell you what to do with it.
The “Oh, I Only Brought…” Scam
This one drives me nuts and I see it all the time when selling to independent third parties. It’s not uncommon for someone to agree to buy your vehicle only to show up at your residence and tell you they brought less cash than originally agreed upon. They flash the cash in hopes that you will take the discount. This works all the time because a lot of sellers just want to be done with the process. Holding the cash in hand can often cause us to make poor decisions.
If you find yourself in this situation, just remember to stay calm. It’s important not to let the buyer pressure you into accepting a lower price than what you agreed on. If they are insistent, you can always ask them to leave and try selling your car to someone else. There’s no reason to give in to their demands – after all, it’s your car and you should be getting the full amount that you agreed on.
Be wary of any dealer who pressures you into making a decision before you’re ready. A good dealer will give you time to think things over and won’t try to rush you into signing on the dotted line. If you feel like you’re being pressured, walk away and find another dealer who will give you the time and space you need to make a decision.
By following these tips, you can avoid getting scammed when buying a car. Do your research, know what to look for, and don’t rush into anything. With a little knowledge and caution, you can buy your next car with confidence! Happy car shopping!
Have you ever been the victim of a car buying scam? Share your story in the comments below! And be sure to share this blog post with anyone who might be in the market for a new car. Together, we can help put an end to these scams!
Have a Great Day! 🙂
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Check out this article specifically about the Electrical Tape and Odometer Scam.
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