is the Name of the Game
The Internet offers a quick,
efficient way to request auto lease quotes from multiple dealers. We
recommend clicking on each of the links below to harvest two
or three quotes before setting off to do battle.
Top 10 Leasing ScamsTM
Unlike Dave's top 10 list, this one isn't funny.
Rather it's a shameful list of dirty tricks most often used by dealers and
salesmen to rip-off unsuspecting customers. Your most potent weapons against
these assaults are knowledge, diligence, and skepticism. In short, trust no one
and check everything yourself.
Here are some general pointers on protecting
- Know the terminology
of leasing, specifically the terms gross cap cost, net cap cost,
cap reduction, residual, and money factor.
- Before you begin to negotiate, insist
on disclosure of the money factor and/or lease interest rate, residual
value, fees, rebates and incentives.
- Make sure your cash down payment and trade
equity are properly applied as a cap reduction payment (reduces the cap
- Account for and understand all adjustments to
the gross cap cost. In general, gross cap cost - cap reduction + capitalized
fees + capitalized taxes = net cap cost. Net cap cost is used to calculate
the monthly payment.
- Account for every penny of the cash required
at signing. Ask the salesman to break-down this figure in writing. Typical
components are first payment, security deposit, sales tax, sales tax on down
payment, luxury tax, DMV fees, and acquisition fee.
- Always, always, always calculate
the payment yourself. It is not hard and can be done easily with a hand
calculator. If the payment on the contract does not agree agree with your
calculations, do not sign anything.
- Trust your instincts. If something doesn't
sound or feel right about the deal then don't do it.
- Finally, consider using a service such
as The Leasing Hot Line who
will analyze the lease over the phone for about $30, or analyze the deal
yourself with consumer leasing software such as Expert
If you catch a dealer pulling one of these scams,
contact your local Attorney Generals office and take your business elsewhere
(yes, there are honest dealers out there - you just have to find them).
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Software, provider of auto leasing software and resources.
Leasing Hot Line, Top Ten Leasing Scams, and Leasing University
are trademarks of Chart Software.