Before you decide to visit a buy here pay here car dealership, it’s important to do some research. They specialize in financing vehicle purchases for people with bad credit or no credit. If you don’t have access to a conventional auto loan, you still need a way to get reliable transportation at an affordable price.
The problem is that too many buy here pay here car dealers don’t have your best interests in mind. These dealers have a reputation for dishonest and impersonal service as well as an inventory of poor-quality vehicles. The good news is that not all buy here pay here dealers fit this mold. Here are just four crucial things that you need to know about these independent dealers that can save you time, money, and a lot of frustration.
“No Money Down” Gimmicks Are Designed to Get You to the Lot (and Little Else)
Some buy here pay here dealerships are masters of the “bait and switch.” If they’re promising “$0 Down” or “99¢ Down” on a vehicle, those deals are only for certain vehicles, and only for customers “with approved credit.”
These dealers use these gimmicks to get you through the door, then it’s typically the salesperson’s job to get you in a different vehicle that you probably don’t want. If you’re serious about getting an affordable car, stay away from the hype and flashy sales tactics. In the end, a good down payment on a vehicle will help lower your monthly payments and keep you in the vehicle.
Most Don’t Care If Your Loan Fails
Here’s a hard truth that far too many buy here pay here customers are used to: most buy here pay here car dealers don’t care whether or not you can afford the vehicle. Their goal is to get your down payment and as many months of payments as they can squeeze out of the deal. If a dealer is too willing to put you into a car outside of your budget, you should be suspicious of their motives.
Once you can no longer pay for the car, they’ll shut you down remotely with the payment device and simply repossess the vehicle. The worst part of the deal is that you will still be on the hook for the unpaid loan balance and once again be without transportation. Always look for a car dealer that cares about your budget and wants to get you into the car you want with payments you can afford.
Most Buy Here Pay Here Dealers Do Not Report to Credit Bureaus
If you’re purchasing a car from a buy here pay here dealer, it’s because you have credit problems. The best way to improve your credit is by making timely payments on a loan. Unfortunately, many buy here pay here dealers do not report your loan or the payments to the credit bureaus. Many dealers don’t report your payments to credit bureaus because they have to meet certain guidelines, it is too much trouble, and too expensive to maintain. Ideally, you should look for a buy here pay here car dealer that reports to at least one credit bureau. Integrity Auto Finance, for instance, reports to all three.
Most “Free” and “Lifetime” Warranties Feature Hidden Costs and Limited Coverage
Cars feature lots of complex, mechanical parts, and from time to time, nearly all will experience one problem or another. This is true for all cars; even brand new cars come with a warranty. A guarantee with a used vehicle can give you peace of mind, but it’s important to read the fine print on any warranty; most buy here pay here dealers are not typically known for their comprehensive and transparent service plan . Their “free” and “lifetime” warranties sound appealing, but have a long list of exclusions and hidden costs. Some might slyly transfer the responsibility to the buyer, voiding parts or all of the warranty. When you buy from an independent dealer, make sure that they offer an honest service warranty plan with their vehicles.
If you need transportation and are thinking of using a buy here pay here dealer, it helps to use caution and do your research in advance. If you decide to use an independent dealer, avoid falling for advertising gimmicks, only spend what you can afford, find a dealer that reports to the credit bureaus, and make sure that you get an honest warranty. Honest, helpful dealers can help you get into the vehicle you want with payments you can afford.