Local car dealers get creative with deals

SANDUSKY No money down? Two cars for the price of one? The offers soun
Annie Zelm
May 24, 2010

 

SANDUSKY

No money down?

Two cars for the price of one?

The offers sound almost too good to be true. But as a surplus of vehicles sit on lots and consumers sit on their wallets, dealers just might be desperate enough to roll out their biggest deals yet.

Want to buy? The Ohio Attorney General's Office offers tips for spotting deals that might be too good to be true.

Watch out for:

* A "buy-one-get-one-free" deal where the "free" vehicle might not really be free. You could end up paying MSRP or list price for the first vehicle and applying rebates and incentives to reduce the cost of the second vehicle.

* Rebates worth several thousand dollars with restrictions that would limit your ability to receive the money, for example, requiring that you currently own that same brand of car or that you are a recent college graduate.

* Offers that you can return your car if you lose your job but that require very specific circumstances, such as time period between purchase and unemployment, to be valid.

* "No-money-down" offers that don't include costs such as tax, title, licensing and document fees.

* Deals for "0% APR" or "No Payments" until a certain date that may actually require consumers to have a minimum credit score or that only offer that APR for a limited time of your ownership.

* Promises that you will receive a certain amount for your trade-in but that only apply to vehicles in a certain condition or if you purchase a vehicle above a certain price.