Should you leave a deposit?

A deposit is a payment that shows a dealer you intend to purchase a vehicle from them. Do not leave a deposit if you are not 100% sure you will buy the vehicle. If you put down a deposit and do not buy the vehicle, the dealer may be able to keep the entire deposit.

In some cases, a deposit may be to:

  • Hold the vehicle for some time
  • Bring the vehicle in from another dealer
  • Bring the vehicle directly from a manufacturer
  • Arrange financing for the vehicle

A deposit should be documented in writing, so ask for a deposit agreement.  The agreement should include:

  • The amount of the deposit
  • Under what terms the deposit is refundable
  • Under what terms it will be non-refundable
  • If the deposit amount applies to the purchase price
  • What date the vehicle will be delivered or available

Be sure you agree with all the terms in the purchase or deposit agreement before you sign. Take a copy with you when you leave the dealer.

For more information on deposits, see the VSA Fact Sheet: Deposits.