January 6th, 2014
Buying a car is a big decision for many people. As it is a large investment, you want to be sure it is the right size and has the best features to suit your needs. Unfortunately, some people fall victim to fraudulent car sales and end up with a vehicle that is less than satisfactory. According to Forbes, car-buying issues with dealers are one of the top complaints among consumers to the Better Business Bureau. Fortunately, while buying a car can take time and effort, getting car insurance isn't as difficult and doesn't have to cost a lot if you shop around. Here are some of the top car-buying scams to look out for:
Cars without proper titles
Buying a used car can save you thousands of dollars and still net a quality vehicle. The most important part of the transaction has to do with the car's title proving that you are the new owner. Without a title, it is impossible to be sure who owns the car. Since the recession, car title fraud has risen. To avoid being a victim of fraud, ask to see the car title and take a good look at it. A dealership that isn't able to produce a title for you to examine likely isn't reputable.
Wrecked and salvaged vehicles
Many people buy cars because they like the way they look. However, it is essential to get the full story behind a car's history. Without it, you could be purchasing a car that was involved in serious accidents and comes with flaws. Wrecked and salvaged cars are sometimes fixed up to look new on the outside, but could have been totaled not long before. To make sure you aren't buying a car that was once in an accident or totaled, take a look at the title. Serious accidents should be reported on the car's history. To further make sure the car is in good shape, take it to a trusted mechanic for an inspection.
If you have less than-perfect-credit, dealerships may try to take advantage of financing a vehicle by adding on extra fees for acquisition or something similar. These fees could make the price of a new vehicle jump drastically. If you are buying a car and the price suddenly spikes, be wary that this could not actually have to do with credit. Instead of upfront fees, interest rates will likely be higher for financing a vehicle with bad credit. To avoid this scam, check your credit score and try to secure financing before you shop or buy.