An educated consumer is a protected consumer. And as part of its commitment to improving consumer education and awareness OMVIC has launched a targeted four-week awareness campaign to inform Ontario car-buyers about the all-in price advertising requirements. With the launch of the campaign also comes OMVIC’s newest consumer resource: this blog!
Remember the fun and excitement of buying a car? OMVIC is bringing it back with all-in pricing
“The campaign message is simple,” explains Terry O’Keefe, OMVIC Director of Communications and Education, “all-in price advertising is putting the fun and excitement back into car-buying! Why? Because there are no more hidden fees or added surprise costs.” The advertised price, is the price.
OMVIC’s province-wide campaign includes online and TV advertising that highlights the fact consumers can experience the fun and excitement of buying a car thanks to the all-in price advertising law. And what exemplifies fun and excitement better than the sight of a dog joyously enjoying a car ride, head out the window, tongue lapping the air and fur flying in the wind!
Click to view OMVIC’s new TV commercial!
No more hidden fees or added surprise costs – how all-in pricing works
All-in price advertising is the law; a law meant to provide transparency to consumers and to create a fair and level playing field for dealers . If a dealer advertises a price for a vehicle (new or used), that price MUST include ALL fees and charges the dealer intends to collect.
The only additional fees an OMVIC-Registered Dealer can add are HST and licensing. Note: licensing refers to the actual cost of vehicle registration and plates (it cannot include extra fees added by the dealer).
What is an advertisement?
An advertisement is any inducement to buy or lease a vehicle. This would include, but is not limited to, ads:
- In print (newspapers, magazines, etc.)
- On the internet (dealer site, online marketplace, etc.)
- On social media
- On radio or TV
- On signs (including those in or on a vehicle)
What must be included in an all-in price advertisement?
Examples of fees or charges that must be included in an advertised price include:
- PDI-PDE (pre-delivery inspection/ expense)
- Administration (Admin) fee(s)
- Government levies (air tax, etc.)
- Safety and e-test (unless the ad contains a mandated "Unfit Vehicle" or "As-Is Vehicle" statement)
Further, if a dealer intends to charge for products or services they have pre-installed on a vehicle, those costs MUST also be included in the advertised price. Examples include:
- Nitrogen/ tire protection package
- Security or theft deterrent products/ services (etching, etc.)
Note: OMVIC does not regulate vehicle manufacturers; therefore advertisements placed by manufacturers do not have to comply with the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act and all-in pricing is not required in manufacturer ads. That said, some manufacturers voluntarily comply with the all-in pricing provision and commendably provide transparency to consumers.
The best consumer protection, is education
So what should consumers do if a dealer tries to add charges on top of the advertised price? According to O’Keefe, “If a dealer tries to charge fees in excess of the advertised price, walk away, shop elsewhere and report the dealer to OMVIC.”
It’s vital consumers educate themselves and learn their rights as a consumer. Learn how and when consumers are protected by OMVIC and Ontario’s consumer protection laws.