3 Tricks and Underhanded Tactics Dealers May Try to Pull on You When Selling a Used Vehicle

Selling a car can be stressful, so it should come as no surprise that a lot of drivers choose to just call up their local used car dealerships and take whatever they can get. Surprisingly often, the money they receive is far less than the car’s actual value, though. Read on to find out about three underhanded tactics used car dealers employ to trick drivers into selling for less and learn how to avoid them.

Nitpicking and Price Slashing

Since used car dealers make their money by purchasing vehicles at low prices and reselling them for what they’re really worth, it’s common for them to low-ball sellers or to nitpick on the car’s condition as a means of negotiating price. While it’s normal for both parties to have their best interests in mind, it’s never wise to trust an unfamiliar used car salesman by default. Instead, find out the value of your Bentley to even the playing field when it comes to negotiation.

Delay Tactics

When used car dealers notice that a driver is anxious to sell immediately, they sometimes employ delay tactics in an effort to get the seller to accept a lower price offer. At first, the dealer will offer an excellent price. He or she will then find ways to stall the process, increasing the seller’s desperation as his or her anticipated sell date looms close, then passes by.

At this point, the dealer will enlist the help of a friend to pressure the driver into selling at a much lower price. The friend might even own another seemingly-legitimate car dealership and use terminology like expedited sales or fire-sale pricing to seem legitimate. In reality, what they’re doing is taking advantage of a driver’s desperation and using it as a twisted negotiation strategy, so don’t trust a dealer who offers an irresistible price but refuses to pay up-front after seeing the car.

Empty Promises

Some drivers assume that calling around to different dealers to see what they’ll offer for their cars is the best way to get a good deal. More often than not, it’s a good way to waste a lot of time.

Most used car dealers are quick to make promises of excellent prices and quick sales over the phone to entice sellers to head in for an evaluation. Once they get there, though, the dealer will almost always offer a disappointingly low price after actually viewing the car. Unscrupulous dealers will find any excuse to lower the prices they offer due to minor cosmetic damage or even non-existent damage.

The best way to avoid this problem is by selling to a specialist online. Find a company that will offer top-dollar for quality, luxury vehicles instead of dealing with underhanded dealers.

The Bottom Line

Selling a car is stressful, but it shouldn’t have to be. Not all used car dealers practice these unscrupulous tactics, enough of them do that savvy sellers often avoid them entirely. Instead, they sell their cars online to reputable companies that specialize in buying a particular type of car.

It’s still important for sellers to perform their due diligence when choosing an online buyer, but the process is much easier. Just check with the BBB and read reviews from others who have sold their cars to the company in the past. It will save a lot of time and hassle.

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