Navigating Dealership Financing: What Not to Say to the Dealer

Car buying can be an enjoyable experience, but the process of car financing often feels burdensome. However, finding an auto loan doesn’t have to involve days of searching for a lender.

Your local dealership can assist you in obtaining an auto loan. While there may be concerns about dealing with dealerships, it is essential to approach the process calmly and cautiously. By avoiding certain statements during your dealership visit, you can increase your chances of securing an affordable financing program. In this article, we will discuss three things you should refrain from saying to the dealer to enhance your loan approval prospects.

Statement 1 – “I don’t know my credit score.”

Visiting a dealership without knowing your credit score leaves you vulnerable to potential exploitation. Dealers may take advantage of your lack of knowledge and offer high-interest rates. It is advisable to check your credit score before embarking on the car buying process. Obtain a copy of your credit report and review it thoroughly. This will enable you to answer any questions posed by the dealer confidently.

Statement 2 – “I want any car. You are my only hope.”

Emotions should take a back seat when visiting a dealership lot. Expressing desperation may give the dealer the upper hand during negotiations. It is important not to allow the dealer to choose a car for you, as they might attempt to sell you a subpar vehicle or push you towards a more expensive option. Stay focused and assertive in your car selection process.

Statement 3 – “I can afford XYZ amount of monthly payment only.”

Revealing a specific monthly payment amount to the dealer is unwise. If you disclose your maximum affordability, the dealer is likely to set the same amount as your monthly payment, leaving little room for negotiation. Instead, discuss financing options after selecting the car. By doing so, the dealer will be more motivated to make a sale and may offer you a better deal. Additionally, it is crucial to consider the bigger picture and not solely focus on monthly payments. A dealer may offer lower monthly payments but compensate with high-interest rates. Calculate the Annual Percentage Rate (APR) to assess the overall affordability of the loan.


When navigating dealership financing, it is crucial to be cautious and avoid certain statements that may hinder your loan approval chances. Take the time to know your credit score, research your options, and remain assertive during the car buying process. By refraining from disclosing specific payment amounts and expressing desperation, you can maintain control and negotiate for the best financing terms possible. Remember, dealerships can provide valuable opportunities for individuals with bad credit, so approach the experience with confidence and make informed decisions to secure an affordable financing program.

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