When looking at a newspaper ad from a dealership, the first thing I look for is the fine print. Known as "the disclaimer", that little block of tiny text at the bottom of an ad is a crucial part of understanding what the ad is all about. See that advertised payment of $129? Sounds good, right? Well, without examining the fine print you may not have realized it was a bi-weekly payment. That is, $129 every two weeks. Oh well, $260 or so per month is still in your budget. Not so fast. Did you notice that the down payment required to get that payment was $3500? No? It's right there in the disclaimer. Oh, and now that you're looking, do you know what those three letters, OAC, mean? They stand for On Approved Credit. Which means that unless your credit history is absolutely spotless, there's a good chance you will not be approved for the terrific low interest rate that was used to calculate those payments.
See how that $129 that caught your eye can change pretty quickly? It's much better for everyone involved that you come to that realization at your kitchen table rather than when in the salesperson's office. After all, it's all there in black and white. Now grab a magnifying glass and start seeing those newspaper ads in a whole new light!
Blaine Plester, Marketing Manager