Car Dealership Financing Shenanigans

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ChefJoe said:   Been watching, don't have much to add except if you're not planning on towing, the "extras" of that package are probably all unnecessary if you're just thinking "someday, I might like to rent a trailer for a short haul."  Also, the chance of those 600 miles being damaging are probably low...  mostly sales demo miles rather than drag racing.  If your plan is to drive it into the ground rather than sell it then model year differences won't matter too much.

While the plan is to drive into the ground, we never know what the future will bring. My college kids will be moving several times over the next few years. We also tailgate quite a bit and the electrical connection at the tailgate is very appealing.

Go see the 2014. You won't really be able to make up your mind long distance until you drive it.

Personally I would wait a month or two and get a 2014.  It sounds like the 2013 inventory is depleted except for your 800 mile demo unit.  Once the old inventory is depleted, the manufacturer will be more likely to start offering incentives on 2014s.  Another month or two will also allow dealers to start competing on the USAA/TrueCar discounts, so you might see a better offer there.  Since there is no chance you will lose a 2014 incentive by waiting, I would at least wait until after Labor day to see what the new month of rebates brings. 

taranisj said:   I believe in your case, the form was not required.  The money was obtained from a loan and should not be considered “cash”. Maybe there was a misunderstanding, and the person be rude to you thought you had a bank draft, which falls into the category of “cash”.  However, the salesman should have known and should not have asked you to sign any blank forms.  Signing blank forms is wrong and screams of a scam.
 

  
That was my thought--someone who didn't know the difference between "cash" as the green stuff vs "cash" as not credit.  Buying a car with the green stuff would cause a SAR.

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Body man BIL tells me that vehicles with trailering packages should also have improved suspension. Waiting until the 2014 dealer opens to discuss price.
You probably already know this, but an upgraded suspension due to a towing package, generally meaning a worse driving experience for day to day driving.  Stiffer springs or shocks are going to deliver a harsher ride and unless you are going to be at the upper towing limits are not worth in for most people.

Tom9999 said:   Personally I would wait a month or two and get a 2014.  It sounds like the 2013 inventory is depleted except for your 800 mile demo unit.  Once the old inventory is depleted, the manufacturer will be more likely to start offering incentives on 2014s.  Another month or two will also allow dealers to start competing on the USAA/TrueCar discounts, so you might see a better offer there.  Since there is no chance you will lose a 2014 incentive by waiting, I would at least wait until after Labor day to see what the new month of rebates brings. 
  
There is a Labor Day incentive of $500.  It's not much but it's something.  And football season starts Saturday.  There is much motivation to get this done to free up my fall weekends.  



 

LiquidSilver said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Body man BIL tells me that vehicles with trailering packages should also have improved suspension. Waiting until the 2014 dealer opens to discuss price.
You probably already know this, but an upgraded suspension due to a towing package, generally meaning a worse driving experience for day to day driving.  Stiffer springs or shocks are going to deliver a harsher ride and unless you are going to be at the upper towing limits are not worth in for most people.

  
Dealer says no difference in suspension with trailer package on this vehicle.  

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Dealer requested my SSN and for me to sign a blank financing contract 
  You should simply have given it right back to him and told him that that was your blank signature.

StevenColorado said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Dealer requested my SSN and for me to sign a blank financing contract 
  You should simply have given it right back to him and told him that that was your blank signature.

   That's just awesome.  Where were you Saturday?

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   
LiquidSilver said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Body man BIL tells me that vehicles with trailering packages should also have improved suspension. Waiting until the 2014 dealer opens to discuss price.
You probably already know this, but an upgraded suspension due to a towing package, generally meaning a worse driving experience for day to day driving.  Stiffer springs or shocks are going to deliver a harsher ride and unless you are going to be at the upper towing limits are not worth in for most people.

  
Dealer says no difference in suspension with trailer package on this vehicle.  

  So what is the tow package?  Just an installed hitch?

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   
StevenColorado said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Dealer requested my SSN and for me to sign a blank financing contract 
  You should simply have given it right back to him and told him that that was your blank signature.

   That's just awesome.  Where were you Saturday?

  Colorado. Come on over.  Send me a few pics so I'll recognize you.

So what is the tow package?  Just an installed hitch?

...and wiring for trailer lights.
Usually upgraded radiator and/or transmission cooler,
sometimes a bigger alternator. Bigger brakes or stiffer suspension would be less common.
Edmunds.com probably lists what comes in the 'package' or you could pick up a factory brochure at the dealership.

Vertical hitch which can be used for towing or bike racks, heavy duty cooling system, electrical harness and plug for connecting trailer lights. The more I think about the hitch, the more uses I see for it.

Couple of comments...I skimmed through the last 2 pages, so forgive me if I haven't got it down %100:

Regarding SARs, etc.

SARs are a FinCEN form (previously form 109, now eFile only) - http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-tege/fin109_sarmsb.pdf  - note the FinCEN in the upper left corner. And yes, it does request a SSN if available.

The 8300 form on the other hand - http://www.fincen.gov/news_room/nr/html/20120919.html  (also a FinCEN form) - can be used to file for suspucious activity as well. Since this is a car dealership, they would be filing the 8300 as the 109 form is meant for MSBs.

Take a look at the 8300 - http://www.fincen.gov/forms/files/fin8300_cashover10k.pdf  - and look at the section "definitions" under Cash and what constitutes it - it isn't just green cash.

So, there are quite a few reasons that an SSN might be asked for.

But, regardless of what the LAW says, as a private dealer, they have the right to ask for any information to protect themselves from fraud. Very few forms of payment are instantly verifiable (it may be counterfeit, etc).
So, you give them a check, money order, cash, etc... and then just expect to drive away in the vehicle? I'm not saying this is what happened with the OP (I'm not entirely sure where it went south), I'm just saying that it isn't unreasonable for them to request it. Now, OTOH, though it isn't illegal, it shouldn't be required. Drivers license should be enough for what they need.

Personally, I wouldn't make a big deal about giving my SSN to someplace I was doing such a large transaction with (I think some states the dealers need the SSN for the registration paperwork anyway). SSNs are so easily available to someone who wants to find it.

I'm not using this as an excuse for either them demanding it or their behavior towards the OP, but there are certain situations where an SSN might be required, and even others where they will be requested to protect themselves. If you aren't happy about it go elsewhere as is your right as a consumer.

In this case, I am definitely concerned about the Blank Contract, but not so much about the SSN. It was valid for them to be worried an e-check might no clear - however as participants in the USAA program they should have some way to call USAA to instantly verify.
 

In this case, I am definitely concerned about the Blank Contract, but not so much about the SSN. It was valid for them to be worried an e-check might no clear - however as participants in the USAA program they should have some way to call USAA to instantly verify.

Once they asked for the blank contract, they wouldn't be getting anything from me that I didn't consider absolutely necessary to verify payment or issue the title.

I always like to try and guess what car people are shopping for, so I'm going to say you are looking at a Chevy Traverse. Whatever it is, good luck.

Flame me up and keep it burning. A car loses 15 percent to 20 percent of its value each year. The depreciation in a car's first year tends to be even steeper. A new-car owner feels the sting immediately. A new car loses a big chunk of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot. Here's why. Source: bank rate.

imsparty said:   Flame me up and keep it burning. A car loses 15 percent to 20 percent of its value each year. The depreciation in a car's first year tends to be even steeper. A new-car owner feels the sting immediately. A new car loses a big chunk of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot. Here's why. Source: bank rate.
  The sky is blue, grass is green, and new cars lose value.  Can we state some more obvious facts that have no bearing on this thread.

I'm buying the 2014. I got a very good deal with the difference essentially coming down to losing the $1500 rebate on the 2013 and then adding in the trailering package. And no, it's not a Traverse.

Here's a story you all will enjoy. Last night I went to the local dealer to buy what I thought was a 2014 they had on their lot. My mistake, they put the wrong color photo in the ad (color I wanted) but did list correct color (not color I wanted) in the description. I tell them I only want X color. They said they will locate one but come back and say there is not a 2014 around here, only one 2013. They push doing a dealer trade for that 2013. I know it's the one from the deal I walked away from. We have a conversation - I really don't know that I want that one, but I do let them give me numbers because at this point I don't know what I can get a 2014 for. They give me price for 2013 - they even knock a tiny bit off what "bad" dealer deal was. I tell them I will think about it but that I am not making any decision that night. Today I have a voice mail from local dealer telling me that they have "my car" on their lot ready for me...

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:    Today I have a voice mail from local dealer telling me that they have "my car" on their lot ready for me...
 

  Is "my car" a 2014 in X color or the 2013 from the "bad" dealer?

beltme said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:    Today I have a voice mail from local dealer telling me that they have "my car" on their lot ready for me...
  Is "my car" a 2014 in X color or the 2013 from the "bad" dealer?

  
The 2013 from the "bad dealer" that's now sitting on the local dealer lot.  

LiquidSilver said:   
imsparty said:   Flame me up and keep it burning. A car loses 15 percent to 20 percent of its value each year. The depreciation in a car's first year tends to be even steeper. A new-car owner feels the sting immediately. A new car loses a big chunk of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot. Here's why. Source: bank rate.
  The sky is blue, grass is green, and new cars lose value.

And don't forget old Satan Claus, he's out there, and he's just getting stronger...

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   
beltme said:   
Tinker2Evers2Chance said:    Today I have a voice mail from local dealer telling me that they have "my car" on their lot ready for me...
  Is "my car" a 2014 in X color or the 2013 from the "bad" dealer?

  
The 2013 from the "bad dealer" that's now sitting on the local dealer lot.  

Now I'm confused. Is there a third dealer involved in the final sale of the 2014 you mentioned?  

A few years ago I had a dealer tell me they would take USAA's draft check only to tell me they wouldn't take it at the last minute. They said I could fill out a finance form and drive it home, I got up to walk out, they suddenly took the check again but said I'd have to wait 3 days for it to clear, I said see you in three days and left. I'm sure if it was a common vehicle they would have let me walk out, but it was a commercial van they bought up from another state.

For my recent purchase of a SRX I just let them finance me then turned around and refinanced it with USAA a week later.

Sorry, sorry. The 2014 I'm buying is some miles away, from a third dealer that came into the picture yesterday. I had sent out emails yesterday afternoon to dealers that had 2014s on their lots when the local dealer hadn't responded to my email offer (sent Saturday after bad dealer fiasco) to come in and buy what I thought was the vehicle they had on their lot. The "winning" dealer responded to my price request without a reasonable offer, not a high BS number and a spiel about how I needed to come in to really talk numbers.

I know I could have asked local dealer to try to dealer trade for that one, but it's close enough that I can make the drive and then I can be the one to put the first miles on it.

foghorn19 said:   Instead of BBB, Yelp the cr@p out of the scammers. Have some friends and family leave Yelp reviews about your experience as well.
  Yelp is such a scam.  They'll hustle you if you own a business to remove bad reviews for $$/month.  And if you pay $XXX, they'll put the good reviews on top.

cr3s said:   foghorn19 said:   Instead of BBB, Yelp the cr@p out of the scammers. Have some friends and family leave Yelp reviews about your experience as well.
Yelp is such a scam.  They'll hustle you if you own a business to remove bad reviews for $$/month.  And if you pay $XXX, they'll put the good reviews on top.

Citation needed. With actual proof of this happening, not just a single newspaper article that was never proven to be true and officially refuted.

I suspect people just don't know how to use the website -- some reviews are filtered out and may not be displayed on the first page or at all unless you change the filter to display all reviews. But the average rating and the rating statistics do not depend on these filters, they cover all reviews.

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Sorry, sorry. The 2014 I'm buying is some miles away, from a third dealer that came into the picture yesterday. I had sent out emails yesterday afternoon to dealers that had 2014s on their lots when the local dealer hadn't responded to my email offer (sent Saturday after bad dealer fiasco) to come in and buy what I thought was the vehicle they had on their lot. The "winning" dealer responded to my price request without a reasonable offer, not a high BS number and a spiel about how I needed to come in to really talk numbers.

I know I could have asked local dealer to try to dealer trade for that one, but it's close enough that I can make the drive and then I can be the one to put the first miles on it.

  
Get it in writing with every number clearly spelled out.  I would actually ask them to draw up the purchase agreement and e-mail it over to review if this is any kind of investment in time and driving.  An e-mail quote is meaningless, as I have unfortunately found out.  They will say anything to get you on their lot to haggle. 

I had a dealer give me a great quote so I headed over there that night.  All kinds of sleazy shenanigans ensued - vehicle missing, here is another one just like it, oops we lost the window sticker, oops we really only meant to give you 3% off invoice, not 6%.  Wasted two hours of my time, but was only a 15 mile trip.  I walked.

Ask them to put together the purchase agreement. - not just a quote but the actual paperwork you have to sign to take ownership, complete with VIN and everything.  If they balk, offer a $500 credit card deposit contingent on them doing so and all numbers being the same when you get there.  Be very clear (in writing) that you will walk and dispute the $500 deposit if the purchase price changes by $.01.  If they still balk, I would not make the trip.  The deposit should show you are commited to the purchase and not going to waste their time.  Their investment of time gives you an indication they are not dirtbags - but still watch your back for any last minute shenanigans. 

scripta said:   
cr3s said:   
foghorn19 said:   Instead of BBB, Yelp the cr@p out of the scammers. Have some friends and family leave Yelp reviews about your experience as well.
Yelp is such a scam.  They'll hustle you if you own a business to remove bad reviews for $$/month.  And if you pay $XXX, they'll put the good reviews on top.

Citation needed. With actual proof of this happening, not just a single newspaper article that was never proven to be true and officially refuted.

I suspect people just don't know how to use the website -- some reviews are filtered out and may not be displayed on the first page or at all unless you change the filter to display all reviews. But the average rating and the rating statistics do not depend on these filters, they cover all reviews.

  Citation provided
http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/yelp-and-the-business-of-e...

Basically Yelp sorts the 'bad' reviews lower on advertisers.  It doesn't change their Star Rating (You must be 3 star to advertise and 100 reviews), but advertisers get to move the bad rating to page 2.
Not a scam, but it sure is extortion.

Yelp sucks for business owners. Unless the business pays Yelp's extortion fees, Yelp will filter the vast majority of good reviews on the basis of the reviewers not having a long history of posting reviews. But negative reviews go up unfiltered, regardless of posting history. It's complete garbage. Most people are not aware that a business showing 3 total reviews, 2 bad and 1 good, can potentially have 50+ filtered reviews, 98% of them positive.

DTASFAB said:   Yelp sucks for business owners. Unless the business pays Yelp's extortion fees, Yelp will filter the vast majority of good reviews on the basis of the reviewers not having a long history of posting reviews. But negative reviews go up unfiltered, regardless of posting history. It's complete garbage. Most people are not aware that a business showing 3 total reviews, 2 bad and 1 good, can potentially have 50+ filtered reviews, 98% of them positive.
  That's because they have found that sites full of 1 time reviewers paid for it.
I've seen the Craigslist ad, so I can believe it.

But back to subject, OP won't need to Yelp them bad, I've never seen a car dealer have a good Yelp rating.  I wonder what USAA did when OP complained?

forbin4040 said:   scripta said:   cr3s said:   foghorn19 said:   Instead of BBB, Yelp the cr@p out of the scammers. Have some friends and family leave Yelp reviews about your experience as well.
Yelp is such a scam.  They'll hustle you if you own a business to remove bad reviews for $$/month.  And if you pay $XXX, they'll put the good reviews on top.
Citation needed. With actual proof of this happening, not just a single newspaper article that was never proven to be true and officially refuted.

I suspect people just don't know how to use the website -- some reviews are filtered out and may not be displayed on the first page or at all unless you change the filter to display all reviews. But the average rating and the rating statistics do not depend on these filters, they cover all reviews.
Citation provided
http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/yelp-and-the-business-of-e... 

Basically Yelp sorts the 'bad' reviews lower on advertisers.  It doesn't change their Star Rating (You must be 3 star to advertise and 100 reviews), but advertisers get to move the bad rating to page 2.
Not a scam, but it sure is extortion.
That's the single newspaper article I mentioned. It's the only source for this. As I explained, the filtering may be hiding the reviews, but change the filters (from Yelp-sort to any other sort) and you'll find all the reviews. And the averages aren't affected by the filtering.

Tell them you'll buy the 2013 model if they'll add on a tow package. You'll still get the incentives for the 2013 model, and those should easily offset the costs of them adding on an aftermarket town package. Heck, seeing as it's the end of the month and they have quotas to meet, they may even toss in the tow package, or at least discount the heck out of it. If they can't discount the tow package, then ask them to toss in an extended warranty on the vehicle when you add on the tow package. Everyone wins in the scenario. Trust me.

The tow package is more than the aftermarket hitch. Can't add in the better cooling aftermarket. I am really fine with paying the $1500 difference to get the 2014 model year. And I plain just don't want *that* 2013. It's too bad if the local dealer here is stuck with it on their lot, but I didn't tell them to get it for me. When I told local salesman he shouldn't have done that as I told him I needed time to make my decision, he told me that the other dealer wanted one of their cars so they traded for "mine". Liar.

Tom9999, I appreciate your concern. I have it covered. Of course, I won't have keys in hand until tomorrow but I think it will all be o.k. And as for your story, I had a similar story when I was first buying my first new car years ago - and happened at the local dealer who has gambled on taking the 2013 for me. So even though it's decades later and they are in a different location and probably have different owners, I don't feel at all bad that they gambled on getting that car and lost.

forbin4040 said:   
DTASFAB said:   Yelp will filter the vast majority of good reviews on the basis of the reviewers not having a long history of posting reviews. But negative reviews go up unfiltered, regardless of posting history.
  That's because they have found that sites full of 1 time reviewers paid for it.

  Then the policy should be the same regardless of whether the review is positive or negative.  It's not the policy, because it's not in Yelp's best financial interests to make that the policy.

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Vertical hitch which can be used for towing or bike racks, heavy duty cooling system, electrical harness and plug for connecting trailer lights. The more I think about the hitch, the more uses I see for it.
Unless you are towing something large, and doing so on a regular basis or for long distances, you probably don't need the cooling upgrade.  It's probably a transmission cooler, not upgraded engine cooling.  You can get a hitch installed at U-haul or a local shop for around $200, so use that as a comparison of how much it's worth to you.  

LiquidSilver said:   
imsparty said:   Flame me up and keep it burning. A car loses 15 percent to 20 percent of its value each year. The depreciation in a car's first year tends to be even steeper. A new-car owner feels the sting immediately. A new car loses a big chunk of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot. Here's why. Source: bank rate.
  The sky is blue, grass is green, and new cars lose value.  Can we state some more obvious facts that have no bearing on this thread.

  okay. huh. bearing on thread is that the book value of the 2013 is marked down 10 to 15 percent more than the book value of the 2014. So buying the 14 is a no brainer. Buying the 13 and you will live to regret it. Yawn.

Home with the 2014 model. Dealer was great, numbers matched what we agreed upon, no games. Was a great experience.

Will speak to general manager of "bad" dealer tomorrow. Can't wait to tell him I closed a deal elsewhere.

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Home with the 2014 model. Dealer was great, numbers matched what we agreed upon, no games. Was a great experience.

Will speak to general manager of "bad" dealer tomorrow. Can't wait to tell him I closed a deal elsewhere.

  Why?  He will just yell at you again.  Don't bother Tink, Speak to USAA, that's means more to them than some 'girl' who got a deal.

Tinker2Evers2Chance said:   Home with the 2014 model. Dealer was great, numbers matched what we agreed upon, no games. Was a great experience.

Will speak to general manager of "bad" dealer tomorrow. Can't wait to tell him I closed a deal elsewhere.

  Congrats on the new truck. 

 Don't bother with the GM.  He may act apologetic (may), and you may feel better for telling him off, but nothing will change. He either explicitly or tacitly approves of such behavior because he believes it brings in more money. 

As others have said, talk to USAA. 



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