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Understanding Car Advertising

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The Code Behind Car Advertising

You likely see car advertisements all the time, on the Internet, while watching television, in the newspaper, and even through the mail. You also hear them on the radio. While they can sound exciting and potentially interesting, there is a code to such advertisements, one that most consumers don’t even begin to understand. Being fluent in this code can save you a lot of time, money and frustration, so read on for some insider tips on car advertising.

Cash Back

Sometimes, car dealers draw you in by promising to give you cash back on a new auto loan. In such a situation, you need to go over all of the fine print in the contract, which is something you should do anyway. Most contracts have verbiage that require the buyer to pay a minimum price for the vehicle to access the entire cash back amount. Oftentimes, such a ploy is used for car models that aren’t in super high demand, allowing dealers to move them off the lot and sticking you with a vehicle that doesn’t work for you. Always see in writing how you would get the cash back before you sign the contract.

Low Monthly Payments

Everyone wants low monthly payments on their car loan. Dealers know this, so they draw in shoppers by advertising that they’re offering just that, sometimes even saying that the monthly payment will be under a low dollar amount. The thing that you might not realize is that they aren’t figuring in the sales tax for the loan and its low monthly payment, which in turn will increase the amount to more than what is in the advertisement. If you read the fine print in such ads, such information will be divulged. Another trick is to advertise a low monthly payment, but in the fine print specify that a large down payment was factored into the equation.

No Money Down

One of the things you see all the time in car advertising is the phrase “no money down.” This declaration is enticing for those who really need or want a new car, but they aren’t flush with extra cash at the moment. Before you are bedazzled by such language, find out more about the car loan you would be assuming. By not putting any money down on the load, the bank might be charging higher interest because it views you as a bigger risk of defaulting. With a higher interest rate, you will end up paying more each month for the car, and in the end you will pay more money to pay off the car.

Zero Percent Interest

Another incredibly common ploy used to draw in car shoppers is the claim that the dealer is offering zero percent interest. Even if you receive something in the mail that claims you can get a loan for this basement interest rate, remain incredibly skeptical. A dealership would first have to run your credit to see if you would qualify for such a deal. Sadly, most of the population doesn’t have the credit score for it. Know your credit score before you enter the door. You also need to be aware that such a low interest rate usually does not last the life of a car loan. Instead, it is limited to only so many months, and then the rate goes up and so does your monthly payment. As long as you understand this going into the deal, you can prepared for what will happen later.

Steven Symes   By: Steven Symes
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