How not to buy a car

Check out the video below for the results of a Dateline investigation into one car dealer's slimy sales practices. Here are 2 tips for how to avoid getting taken at the car lot based on the clip:

Don't negotiate based on payments: When you're buying a car, keep your eye on the total amount that you're paying, not the monthly payment. If you can't get super low-interest financing, consider paying for a car in cash. If you can't afford to pay cash for a car, you have to wonder whether you're buying more car than you can afford. The young lady in the video thought she was getting a good deal when she negotiated a lower payment but the dealer extended the terms of the loan by 12 months, meaning she was paying thousands more for the car when she thought she had been a shrewd negotiator.

Don't lie on your loan application:
This one seems obvious but it's pretty common. First, lying on a loan application is a felony in some cases. Second, exaggerating your income to qualify for a bigger loan is a great way to get yourself in over your head. So don't lie. Watch the video for a good cautionary tale.

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