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Tips on Buying Cars/Shady business by dealer


Hi Ray:

First, thanks so much for your kind offer to be of help.

I leased a car at a Nissan dealer in my area. 20  days later, when stopping by to pick up an extra copy of my temp. registration, the finance manager told me, "Uh... we need you and your wife to sign a brand new lease agreement contract because we made a mistake in the estimated taxes and fees." I've had the car for 20 days already and the original deal was fully consummated!

While the change won't affect my payment, and all the other figures would remain the same except the estimated fees going up $1,400 (apparently the "bad" contract already had the higher amount calculated into the payment, but the improper number was typed on the contract), I don't think I should be inconvenienced nor need to do anything more--let alone sign a brand new agreement... have my wife come in and do the same... sign in 15 places... take about an hour to re-read the 4-point type on the multi-page document... nor give them the possibility of for whatever reason, reneging on the agreement that's already fully executed or slipping in a different clause that's not on the original contract. (The original contract was on paper. The new one they want my wife and I to sign would be digital, so I'm not sure if ALL the wording/terms are exactly the same... that is, without spending an hour or two to compare.)

I offered to come in and initial a handwritten change on the ORIGINAL PAPERWORK. They said, "No... the bank won't accept it."

So I offered to sign an addendum which would change only the one dollar amount in question. Nope, they won't do it.

Ironically, if anyone would go back to a selling dealership and ask that a change be made to a contract--20 days later… “just to change one dollar figure”… they'd be laughed out of the place and reminded to reread the “No Cooling Off” clause and, "Sorry! You should have read everything BEFORE you signed it."

Seems to me that they need to resolve their paperwork issues on their own and not involve me in their personal business matters. If the bank won't accept it, that's a business problem... not a customer problem. Perhaps they should do as any consumer would do if a bank doesn't approve their loan when they look for financing for something... TRY ANOTHER BANK. They shouldn't be making THEIR problems mine.

And, since they never processed the paperwork with Nissan, Nissan has no record of the lease and, therefore, hasn't sent me a payment book. In fact, I have no idea where to send my first payment which is due shortly. I don't think they even sent in my registration to the state, although I have a copy of the temp. registration from the original agreement plastered on my windshield.

I'd like to know your take on this, please, Ray.

Many thanks!


Hi Eric,

I have come across this problem many times in the past where the dealer submit paperwork to the lender with a field or 2 not being filled out correctly and therefore will not pay dealer. Had the dollar amount added up to a different figure or wording you would have all the rights to not except.

I fully understand your comments and agree had the shoe been on the other foot 99% of the time the dealer will not play ball. I guarantee right now the finance office is under pressure from upper management to get this file closed, you can prolong their agony but in this case will not win. Here is what I would personally consider doing.

You made the mistake - you come to my location with same contract for me and wife to compare and sign or If they want to inconvenience you by having to visit the dealer again some token of compensation should be considered like a few free oil changes etc etc.

A happy New Year to you and all your family

Ray Paulsen

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Ray Paulsen


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over 35 years in automotive industry, management, retail, wholesale, appraisals, auctions, vintage

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