On October 20, 2020, a terrible three-day fire broke out in a factory in an industrial town in Japan, thankfully with no loss of life. Remarkably, this far-away disaster from a few months ago impacts your current ability to purchase a new car in the Pacific Northwest.
Are auto dealers and service departments open for business in Oregon and Washington State during the coronavirus “stay-at-home” requirement?
In most cases, yes, because they are deemed to provide an essential service for people who need to buy or have a vehicle repaired to drive to essential work, grocery stores or medical facilities. But there are exceptions. For example, one Toyota dealer was temporarily closed for deep cleaning after an employee tested positive for the virus.
Picture this: you have your eyes on a new car. You would like to trade in your current vehicle to serve as down payment, but owing more on the car than the car is worth, you are “upside down” on your car loan. Just as your excitement begins to deflate, a bank agrees to roll the difference between the loan and the car’s current value into a new loan so you can buy the car. This previous loan remainder is called “negative equity” at the time of the new vehicle purchase. (more…)
Dealerships have found creative ways to deal with consumers’ negative equity in order to make more sales. Some practices are downright fraudulent, like fudging the numbers on the purchase contract in order to obtain financing.
In the article below, Young Walgenkim outlines fraudulent methods used by dealers to circumvent negative equity in order to sell more cars. This article was originally published by the Oregon Trial Lawyers’ Association. (more…)