People in the business of selling or leasing new or used vehicles must be licensed. When you buy from a licensed dealer you have protections that you do not have when buying privately.
Licensed vehicle dealers must:
To report a curber contact the Consumer Protection Division by calling 1-877-880-5550 toll free or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
People who sell vehicles without a dealer's licence are sometimes called curbers. They are in the business of selling used cars but they pose as private individuals. They commonly advertise through local newspapers and online ads. Curbers often get poor-quality cars and do not disclose a vehicle's history to potential buyers, often hiding serious accident damage or a sabotaged odometer.
Curbers may insist on meeting buyers in a parking lot, coffee shop or mall. They typically will only take cash and rush people into making a purchase. For example, they will refuse to let you take the vehicle for a mechanical inspection. The name on the vehicle documents will likely not match the one on their drivers’ license. Other signs that someone is a curber are multiple listing for cars for sale with the same phone number but different names or asking which car you are calling about when you call. They may tell you a story to explain why the sale must be rushed through and why the price is low.
Curbers are not licensed as required by law so you do not have the same protections you have when buying from a licensed vehicle dealer. Curbers entice people to buy by pricing the cars for less than you would pay elsewhere but it is not a bargain if you buy a defective car. Because curbers usually insist on being paid in cash it can be very hard to get your money back if you later find out the car has problems.
Advertising by dealers must:
If financing is offered the monthly payment advertised must be the total you will pay including payments on the vehicle, taxes and the cost of the interest on the loan.
Dealers do not have to put a price in ads but if a price is advertised it must be the drive-away price. This applies to ads on lots as well as ads in newspapers etc. GST and PST can be added to this price but no other fees such as freight charges or inspection fees can be added. For used vehicles, a window sticker on a vehicle on the sales lot is considered an advertisement.
Any add-ons to a car must be included in the advertised price unless they are something you can decline.
Examples of add-ons that may automatically come with a vehicle purchase include:
If a new vehicle has a sticker showing the manufacturer’s suggested retail price dealers are not required to sell the vehicle at this price.
Dealers do not have to sell the vehicle for the advertised price if you are doing a trade-in or getting financing that was not advertised as part of the deal. However, even consumers who are not guaranteed the advertised price must be told about the advertised price.
Fees often called things like administration, documentation or services fees can only be added on to a selling price if the price was not advertised, there was a trade-in or the dealer provides financing that was not advertised. These fees are not required by the government so the dealer can decide not to charge them.
If the required information is not disclosed you may be able to return the vehicle for a refund or have the vehicle repaired at the dealer's expense. If you have questions about the disclosure requirements or wish to file a complaint, contact the Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority toll free at 1-877-880-5550 or by email at email@example.com.
If a dealer knows or should know something about the vehicle that could reasonably affect a person’s decision to buy or lease it this must be disclosed. For new vehicles this includes but is not limited to telling you about repairs that were made to the vehicle if the cost of the repairs was 20% or more of the price of the vehicle. For used vehicles this includes but is not limited to dealers telling you...
Dealers can take a deposit of up to 2% of the price of the vehicle before you sign a contract to buy the vehicle. If you change your mind the deposit must be returned to you unless the dealer took the deposit to buy a vehicle that was not on their lot. The dealer must give you the terms of the deposit in writing.
Always read a contract before you sign it. As with other contracts the fact that you did not read or understand it does not mean you are not bound by it.
A contract to buy or lease a vehicle must have certain information in it including…
You must sign the contract and the dealer must give you a copy.
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