Protect yourself. Read these important car-buying tips before you sign!
You’ve known for a while that this day would come. And when your kids argued with you about the unfairness of curfews or doing chores, you might have even longed for it, but now that it's time for your darling daughter or son to head off to university or college, you realize you’re not prepared for them to leave home. Don’t worry about them…they’re more than ready. In an effort to stave off empty nest syndrome, you decide to get your offspring a car—nothing too fancy, just a cheap yet decent set of wheels, so they can drive home to visit at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Reading Week, or when they need to get four loads of laundry done.
You’ve found the used car of your dreams at a dealership at a price you can afford. In fact, you’ve been circling the dealership for a few days to check that “The Cruisin' Canary” (the perfect name for your car) hasn’t left the lot with the wrong owner.
Today is the day you’ve decided to take the plunge and move towards committing to your four-wheeled partner.
Well, all right then.
You can do this. You’ve got a plan.
You’ll saunter in, talk to the dealer, see how The Cruisin' Canary handles on a test drive and take things a step further.
You’re a smart consumer, you’ve done your research, you know your rights and have the OMVIC consumer inquiries phone number (1-800-943-6002 ext. 3942) on speed dial. You’ve got your wallet, phone, those pesky prescription glasses and mostly importantly, your power socks on, there’s just one more thing you need to take with you: the right questions!
With today’s modern, tech savvy vehicles - are rolled-back odometers a thing of the past? Or, are roll-backs making a comeback?
Rolled-back odometers are rarely an issue with vehicles sold by OMVIC-Registered Dealers, partially because the consequences can be severe. They could be charged/prosecuted, disciplined and/or lose their licence. And, of course, they have to take back the vehicle and return all monies to the consumer (note: there are time limits for contract rescission). While roll-backs are not a major problem with vehicles sold by dealers, rolled-back odometers are a significant and growing problem amongst vehicles sold by curbsiders and dishonest private sellers.
Thinking about buying a used car? There is a lot of information out there, so paring down that information to what is essential can seem like a daunting task.
Once you have narrowed down your options on budget and brand of vehicle and are ready to start visiting dealerships, knowing about mandatory disclosure requirements is essential.
So what exactly is a lien?
A lien is a legal “encumbrance” registered on a person’s property to secure a debt the property owner owes to another person/business (commonly a bank/lender). In the case of a car loan, a bank (or finance company) will register a lien against the vehicle giving them the right to take possession of it should the borrower default on the loan and to sell the vehicle to recoup the outstanding debt.
So it’s really important you DON’T buy a vehicle with an outstanding lien!
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