Man talking(l+r), Contract Agreement(c)

David Gyung/Shutterstock @tomislavmikula/Tiktok (Licensed)

‘The shadiest thing I’ve ever seen’: Car buyer catches dealership changing price on final paperwork

‘This dealership should be shamed to death.’


Nina Hernandez


A car buyer caught his client’s dealership changing the price on final paperwork. He’s calling the dealership and warning customers to double-check their paperwork before signing on the dotted line.

TikTok user Delivrd (@tomislavmikula) is a “personal car buying advocate.” He provides negotiation services to his car-buying clients. He recently posted a video describing the “shadiest thing” that he’s seen during his time in the business. The video amassed more than 339,000 views since it was posted on April 5.

Delivrd acknowledges that “shady” is a strong word, but he says that in this case, it is warranted. “I don’t use the word shady lightly,” he says. “I deal with more dealerships than 99% of the public, so I understand that they’re trying to make a profit, and I understand there’s nothing inherently wrong with that. But what this dealership just pulled with me and my client is arguably the shadiest thing I’ve ever seen, and I need to warn you about it.”

The TikToker adds, “I don’t call dealership names out, but this is the closest that I’ve done because I am so [expletive] off at their general manager.”

Delivrd then transitions the video to a screenshot of his client’s deal sheet from the dealership. He explains that it is a legally non-binding agreement that is nevertheless usually honored by both the customer and the dealer. “I always say, when a manager signs this form, it’s as good as gold,” Delivrd says. This is because the deal has already gone through the salesperson, the finance department, and a general manager.

The deal sheet shows that the 2024 Honda HR-V is listed at a market value selling price of $30,505 with a discount of $4,170, a doc fee is $85, $459 in non-tax fees, and an estimated $3,288 in taxes. The balance after all those adjustments is $30,168. 

Delivrd acknowledges that $4,170 is a steep discount. “It’s an incredible discount,” he says. “I understand that. I’ve done a lot of HRV deals. I’ve never had a deal like this. But that being said, we were competing against multiple different dealerships, and this is California. And California sometimes does bonkers deals.”

The issue is with sales tax

Delivrd explains that while the dealership is located in an area with a high tax rate, and therefore, the estimated sales tax was based on that rate. But the customer lives in another jurisdiction with a much lower rate. “A lot of times this is inflated, because they want to sell some products,” he says. “They kind of overshoot this number, and then they try to present some products.”

The problem in this instance is that when he and his client looked at the final numbers, the sales price was the same as it had been with the inflated estimated sales tax. When he looked a bit closer, he noticed that the selling price had gone up by the same amount the estimated sales tax had gone down. He called up the general manager to discuss the discrepancy.

“I said, ‘Would there ever be a case where you would reduce the tax rate and also increase the price of the car?’” Delivrd says. “He said, ‘No, that would be absurd. Whatever the car you agreed to is the price you pay. If the price goes down because of taxes, guess what? That’s just good news for you.’”

@tomislavmikula Can a Dealership do this?!? #newcar #carbuyingtips #dealership #carbuying #carsales #delivrd #greenscreen ♬ original sound – Delivrd

Delivrd says he got a call back from the general manager later who blamed the situation on a new employee. The TikToker wasn’t convinced by that explanation. “It was absurd, it was stupid, and it wasted a lot of time,” he says. 

Has a dealership ever tried to “pack” the estimated tax fee before? Sure. “Of course they have,” he says. “That being said, what they don’t do is try to adjust the price later on to try to maximize on profit. I have never seen a dealership do this. This dealership should be shamed to death. And it takes every part of my being not to call them out. But my goal on this channel is not to ruin people’s businesses. That being said, I just want to warn you that this could happen to you.”

Delivrd is just one car expert with tips for TikTok users on how to avoid being scammed at the dealership. Even non-expert car buyers have proven that you can save money by reading carefully and thoroughly before you sign the contract.

Viewers want the TikToker to name the dealership

In the comments section, some users disagreed with Delivrd’s choice not to name the dealership. One user wrote, “No good reason not to name them.” In response, Delivrd wrote, “100s of people work there. They have no involvement with the deal. My outreach is millions. It could ruin lives. Not worth it.”

Another user suggested, “Report that behavior to the manufacturer that is the face of that dealership. Let them deal with it. Very admirable of you not to call them out.” Delivrd replied, “Already did.”

Somebody else said, “I had a dealership increase the price $2000 from the listed price while we were negotiating and pointed to the site and I pulled a screenshot like ???? SHADY.” Delivrd responded, “I hate it.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Delivrd via TikTok comment and direct message for comment.

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