I've created a configurable product with associated products, one of which is in sale. For some reason, the sales price is not showing in the frontend when going to the product; it still shows the original price. I guess this has something to do with that Magento does not use the price from the simple product. Has anyone faced same issue, is there a feasible way to get it to actually apply the special or does it have to be just edited by hand?
You already have the answer in the question.
I also think this is a "flaw by design". For configurable products magento does not use the prices of the simple products. Instead it uses some relative price differences based on the configurable attributes.
As a possible solution you can use this extension.
I haven't used it before because I didn't need it, but I see a lot of people recommending it.