How to outsmart a car dealership?

Here are 20 things your car dealer would never tell you and that you should know. Don't assume that dealer financing is the best deal. The seller is likely to focus on the monthly payment, since it gives him room to play with other variables (such as the amount of interest and the duration of the loan). Dealers typically receive a fixed fee or commission for the auto loans they coordinate, so they might be interested in more than just selling you a car.

If they start talking about how low your monthly payment can be, be careful. Tell the seller that they can talk about financing later; first, they'll want to know what the best price is. Once you've been quoted for a price that you're happy with, talk about financing. Or seek funding through your personal bank.

In addition, the seller may ask you to evaluate your operation, take your keys and literally hold your car hostage until you accept a deal. In fact, they're used to meeting would-be car buyers who express a strong interest in their trucks. Once this has been established, a dealer can process the purchase of your car with bad credit and eventually deliver the car to you. If he or she isn't, you can be sure that they won't give you the upper hand when it comes to negotiating the final price of the car.

It's always best to do some serious research about the car you want before you even walk into a dealership. If you're buying a car with a credit score lower than 600, you can expect payment terms to be relatively less favorable. The manufacturer's website is undoubtedly one of the best places online to learn more about the car you want. If you can afford to wait, the best time to buy a new car is usually at the end of the year, when dealers discount vehicles to meet their annual sales targets and liquidate their lot for new inventory.

In many cases, car buyers request a test drive so they can determine if the vehicle is right for them. Instead, you should consider having a more pleasant disposition throughout the entire car-buying process. Some dealerships also offer discounts depending on the person buying the car, such as a college student, a member of the military service, or even a member of a specific credit union. According to a Forbes report, these devices also have GPS so that the dealer knows exactly where the car is.

And if something doesn't seem right to you, proceed to return the car to the dealer as soon as possible. As John Schleck, executive of centralized and online consumer lending at Bank of America, explained: “While it's not a 'secret', prospective car buyers will be pleasantly surprised to learn that they can enjoy a discount on the interest rate on their auto loans thanks to the relationship they have with their current bank or lender. In addition to this, you can also test all the features of the car and decide how important each one is to you.