When you are finally ready to sign on the dotted line for that new car and the dealer asks (or tells) you about all those optional extras that you are sure to need, Stop! Optional extras do not come for free. The dealer may try to make out he is doing you a favor by having the car Scotchgarded for an extra five hundred, but you can buy the spray-cans and do it yourself for something like $5 per can.
And watch out for the ‘can’t get finance without anti-theft devices’ trick. It will pay you to double-check with your insurance provider or finance institution. It may be true or it may not, and you may also be able to get them installed somewhere else a lot cheaper. Remember, it’s when you move to the finance office to finalize the deal on your car that’s the most dangerous time. You’ve let your guard down because you thought it was all over. Wrong! Now is the time when someone will come along and try to sell you $700 worth of extras for $3500 – or more. The only time you won’t be subject to this scam is if you bought your car from a reputable online dealer.
Some other optional extras that you really shouldn’t need are:
* Credit Life Insurance. $200 for you and $30 for them. It is against the law for them to tell you that you must take this if your credit is bad. Watch out for Credit Disability Insurance. It doesn’t kick in until after 15 days so if you’ve been injured for 12 days you get nothing. If you want insurance get it from another place, not the dealer. Watch that they don’t try to sneak it in.
* Paint Sealant. $300 for a $10 job. This is usually just a wax from a bottle; no wax lasts for years. Read the instructions on the bottle.
* Rust proofing. They’ll charge you $800 when it cost them $40. Most cars come with rust proofing that’s guaranteed for 6 years or 100,000 miles. How much more do you want?
* Detailing/pinstriping. It’ll cost you close to $400 and them $30. If you really want it, get a quote from a private person. You’ll save a bomb.
See? You can save a lot with our easy tips to reminder. There are more extras – list goes on…and on. Dealers can make up to $3500 extra profit on extras like these, so keep your wits about you and know what’s on the paper before you sign.