The excitement of buying a car, combined with perhaps being presented with information one is unfamiliar with, can sometimes cause consumers to overlook the finer details of what they are actually buying, says Lebogang Gaoaketse, communications, social media and PR manager at WesBank.
This is especially with regard to additional products, also known as value-added products.
"It is important to be as informed as possible, and to be alert to potential dishonest behaviour by dealers who might want to take advantage of your inexperience and lack of knowledge by selling you products you don't want, need or understand," cautions Gaoaketse.
'In some instances, dealers might try to add these into your deal without you realising, or even understanding what they are, so be aware and do not be afraid to ask the relevant questions."
In the case of a new or pre-owned vehicle purchased through a reputable dealer, consumers are likely to be offered a motor plan, service plan or an extended warranty as part of the purchase agreement.
These are insurance-related products and are aimed at protecting you from unforeseen costs down the line such as a vehicle breaking down.
Additional products that may be offered to someone purchasing a vehicle can range from a tyre warranty to cover you against pothole damage to scratch and dent cover. These may vary among dealers and finance institutions.
Other than comprehensive vehicle insurance, these products are not compulsory.
Gaoaketse suggests carefully going through the terms and conditions of any additional products with the finance agent before signing on the "dotted line" This is to avoid any surprises later on.
"Check that any products or services that get offered to you by the dealer, or a bank, are from reputable organisations and are market related with regard to price, benefits and the relevant terms and conditions," says Gaoaketse.
"As a vehicle owner or driver, you are responsible for maintaining your vehicle and ensuring that it is roadworthy and safe."
* Compiled by Carin Smith