Top Five Things Your Car Salesman Hopes You Don’t Know

Looking for a new (or used) car? Then be sure to keep your brain in gear with the friendly car salesman who greets you on the lot. Remember he’s professionally trained to alter your mind-set. Understand there are many things he doesn’t want you to know when buying your car. Here are five of the most important ones:

  1. He’s not there to help you.

The salesman meets, greets and works to put you in a compliant mood. He won’t, however, help you buy the car you want at the price you want to pay. He carries all information and negotiation offers to another person, usually a sales manager, who works behind the scenes and makes the decisions. Rest assured those decisions help the business, not you.

2. Use your smart phone.

Your smart phone or computer provides access to everything the salesman knows, and some things he doesn’t. Web sites furnish information such as the difference between the dealer’s cost and the mark-up, where the dealer bought the car and how long he’s had it. Take your smart phone with you.

3. Get a pre-approved loan before you shop.

Dealers hate pre-approved loans. Dealer financing gets them a kickback. Furthermore, a pre-approved loan restricts the buyer to a specific budget range.

4. Wait until the end of the month.

Dealers set monthly quotas for their salesmen, and some give bonuses for above-quota sales. Near the end of the month, desperation for sales grows and deals get better.

5. Don’t use the MSRB as your bottom line.

The dealer inflates every sticker price you see, including the dealer’s invoice. In addition, the manufacturer offers dealer incentives, dealer rebates and other goodies unknown to buyers. The same goes for those enticing extras such as fabric protectors, sealants and extended warranties.

Professionals know all the tricks to manipulate buyers and don’t think otherwise. The best defense against the car salesman or dealership is knowledge. Contact us for help in your research. What you do know can put you in the driver’s seat–literally!


Paul Campanella’s Auto & Tire Center is committed to ensuring effective communication and digital accessibility to all users. We are continually improving the user experience for everyone, and apply the relevant accessibility standards to achieve these goals. We welcome your feedback. Please call Wilmington Location (302) 777-7170, Pike Creek Location (302) 998-2234, Hockessin Location (302) 239-2512, Kennett Square Location (610) 990-4400, Swarthmore Location (610) 328-7884 if you have any issues in accessing any area of our website.