Please, if you are buying a New or Used vehicle, READ THIS!!!!
Let me tell you my story of how I became the proud new owner of a used 2003 Chevy S-10 .....
In late July 2004, I went to our local GM dealership. After two calls to Fran Aquino, who sold us our last vehicle purchase at the same dealership: a 1999 Chevy Blazer, he convinced me to come on in and see him. I had told him our financial situation and that I was looking to purchase a used full-sized truck with payments no more than $350.00 .
I went to see him, and no one could seem to find him. They paged him and nothing. Then, I waited and waited in the Service area for him where the workers told me he was. After 15 minutes of waiting, I was leaving.
On the way out, a salesman by the name of Dan Brown gave me his card and said to go through him for the purchase. I took his card and then left.
I called back to the dealership and finally got through to Fran. I told him I would go back to see him and I would be there in 5 minutes. I got to the dealership, and he apologized for being out to lunch. Then, he laughed when I told him some guy tried to get me to buy a car through him, and he gave me his card. He asked who it was and I said Dan Brown. He then asked what I though of him. I said he was a little persistant, but he seemed nice. He said good, and then took me to Dan Brown. Fran informed me he was in the service department now, and was no longer out on the sales floor.
He informed Dan of what I was looking for, and then we went out to look for a full size truck, preferrably with a extra cab because of my 2 children, and it had to be automatic because I could not drive standard.
I told Dan I was looking for a Chevy Silverado. I didn't care what year, how many miles, color. Dan said the Silverados he had were too old, no one would finance us because of the miles, it had to be a newer model.
He showed me a few other trucks, and I decided on one.
I gave him my pay stubs, my husband's pay stubs, and copies of our driver's license's.
He came back and said "Sorry,you were denied".
I thought we were denied because of the amount of payment I was looking for. I left the dealership.
It is now August 5, 2004. My husband, Ernest, calls me at my job to inform me his car just gave out. He was on the way to work and it kept slipping out of gear. I told him I'd leave work early and we would go look for a truck.
I called Dan Brown at the dealership and asked him if he could try anything else, that we were desperate.....this is my first mistake. NEVER tell the dealership you have bad credit, or you are desperate!
He said I though we already tried to finance you???
I told him I though we were denied because of the payment amount I was looking for. He said no, YOU were just denied. I asked him about doing just my husband's credit alone instead of with me and then he said OH, I didn't know you wanted your credit together, I just ran your credit report! Well, Hello!!!!
With a $1,000 house payment, a current $490.00 truck payment, and my income alone, why wouldn't anyone finance me????? This is their first mistake! Did you know everytime a creditor, or someone besides you looks into your credit it goes down 5 points????? So, my credit went down 10 points already just with this dealership!
He apologized, and took my husband's information, AGAIN, and then said he would call my husband's cell number to see what we could work out.
He called my husband back to say we could qualify for a van. My husband was not very happy, but he said if that's all we can get, then that's what we get.
So, me and my husband go back to the dealership. Dan Brown greets us with another man, David, who is the Used Car Sales Manager. They show us this ugly brown Chevy van, 2003 I think. Then, they couldn't even open the door to the van's back. David said not to worry, the van was still under warranty and the dealership would fix the door with no charge. I asked what the price was and when they said $22,000 I had a heart attack! I asked them how it is we could qualify for this ugly van, and not qualify for ANY truck? David then said for Dan to take us to see the used trucks and they would work with us.
The first truck they showed my husband, a 2003 Chevy S-10, he liked. It was "on sale" for $21995.00. I asked if we could get a lower price, Dan said he would work on getting us a great deal. So, we tried to qualify for it. Dan said go ahead and take it home, come back at 8:30 am to sign the papers. I told him I did not want to take it home because if we had to bring it home, and then just give it back, it would be too hard.
He said you are already approved. It's a done deal!
Now, I had called to another dealership, Hi Country Chevrolet, for pricing on a new Chevy Silverado the day before. I like their prices and asked to speak to a salesperson. His name was Frank C. and he pulled my credit and said he would start working on a deal for me. He said he would call back but never did. I figured we did not qualify.
So, the next day, August 6th 2004 we go back to sign papers. Dan shows up late, problems with his water pipes or something. The 15 minutes he said it would take to sign papers turned into almost 2 hours. I was late for work and I was already upset at this point because we did not get a better price on the truck as promised.
On top of that, our payments are $540.00 a month. Here's another lesson: DO NOT FINANCE THROUGH THE DEALER! Go to a bank and get a letter of credit. That way you know how much you can spend on a vehicle! The dealership gets paid to refer their customers to financing through their companies. More money in their pockets! Please read the contract!!!!!!!
Then, to top off my perfect day, as soon as I leave the parking lot, a car in front of me spun their tires and a rock flew at the windshield cracking it.
I immediately called Dan back at the dealership. He said he knew of a guy that fixes windsheilds and would give me his number. I said I just got the truck! He then said, Ok bring it in on Wednesday and I'll fix it - no charge!
I'm loving this dealership more and more....or so I thought!
Wednesday came, I called the dealership. Dan is out on days off, and NO ONE returns my calls! This dealership has already sealed the deal. They DO Not care about customer satisfaction!
Then, I find out the $2000 check I wrote to the dealership is going to bounce. The company that just financed my truck (Household Automotive) just refinance our house (Household) but they accidently took out another $1000 for our house payment.
I go back to the dealership to tell them this, and they get upset with me! Gina Lucero is the one who handles their financial dealings so they send me to talk to her. I write them a check for $1000 (after the fixed my windsheild) and then I get harassed about when the next payment will be, and I won't get a license plate until it's paid in full.
Then, I get a letter from Household Auto saying they did an audit on my account and that 2 very important information is omitted from my contact.
My contract is missing my warranty and Gap insurance providers.
According to the dealerships signed contacts with Household Auto, any customer disputes with the dealership, or any omitted information on the contract voids it.
Then, Frank from Hi-Country calls and said we were approved for a 2004 Chevy Silverado! Not just one bank, but three!
I'm thinking, cool. We could return this truck, we have 3 days to return it right? Wrong!!!! The 'COOLING OFF" period on any major purchase is a myth. If a dealership tells you to think about it for 3 days....get it in writing. Get anything they tell you in writing!
So, now I'm po-ed. The dealership is being rude, and I feel cheated out of a new truck.
I called David and told him about this Chevy rebate deal going on. $5000 off on a new Chevy??? They could approve me for $24,000, and they could not put me in a Chevy Silverado? Bull crap!
David seemed understanding on the phone. I told him my dad had excellent credit and would back me on the deal. He said bring in the S-10 and we'll put you in a Silverado.
The word Trade-in was never brought into conversation! I went to the dealership, after they pulled my dad's credit. Then Dan brings me all this paperwork to sign to trade in the S-10. I asked him why do I have to trade it in? It's been 5 days now, and the financing is not complete! As a dealership, they have the power to cancel the deal. He said no. I had to trade in the truck I purchased for $21995 and trade it in for $17000?
Rip-Off. Also, I learned later the truck was a fleet vehicle. They had purchased it in an auction in Gallup, New Mexico.
I was the first sucker to buy the truck! No wonder they wanted to get rid of it! No wonder they wouldn't sell us the Silverado I wanted! They made money on this deal! I walked in and they saw "SUCKER".
I was so upset about trading in the S10 I left it there and walked home.
The next day, Dan called my husband to work out a deal.
There was no deal. I picked up my truck. Dan said you're still paying the $1000 down right? A $1000 down, sure ! I'll take that deal! Only problem, I signed the papers for $2000 down!I told dan, "you screwed us! You didn't even lower the price on the truck like you promised!" He said,"Yeah, I screwed you, but I didn't tell you to sign the papers either!"
Still very unhappy with the deal. I paid another $300 down. I still owe them $700.
I figured they screwed me, why should I pay them $700.
I went back to the dealership, more punishment, to talk to Michael Valencia, the owner's son. Henry Valencia, the owner was out for the rest of the day. Michael seemed sympathetic at first, then changed when I told him I don't mind being stuck with the truck, but I didn't want to pay the remaining $700 on my account. The truck was $21995, $500 plus over on blue-book value, and it was a fleet vehicle, so they made their money on me! They made more when I financed through them! Then, I told him I felt as if they cheated me out of a 2004 Chevy Silverado. Then he said the dealers just say that to get you in their lots. I told him no, I was approved, not pre-approved, and not lied to like I was at his dealership.
He said he would contact me after talking with his father. He alone could not approve the deal. He said he would call back the next day.
More customer service, He never called back! SURPRISE!
I called back a few days later. He said he could no nothing because I got a good deal on the truck. Yeah, Whatever!
So, here I am still owing $700 and still not happy with the deal I have got myself into.
All I can offer is those few pointers for you.
1. Get a letter a credit - Do not finance through the dealer
2. Look up the blue book values
3. Get all promises in writing
4. Read the contract
5. Be postive this is the best deal for you! Shop at least 5 dealers for better compasion shopping
6. Get quotes in writing
7. Remember, no cooling period unless it is put in writing by the dealer
8. Do not buy your vehicle from Henry Valencia!
I have tried to be nice about this whole situation. I may have lost money on this deal, but in the end, Henry Valencia has lost me as a customer, forever.
I am telling everybody, and their mother, to stay away from Henry Valencia's. Any Delaer is better than here!
My friend just purchased a new 2004 Chevy Trailblazer - she did not buy it at Henry Valencia's!
I will be in the market for another vehicle when I pay off my 1999 Blazer. Guess what? It won't be purchased at Henry Valencia's.
My neice is looking to purchase a Chevy truck. Guess what? It won't be Henry Valencia's.!!!!!
I am only one customer, but one bad deal is all you need. That one customer goes on to tell 10 friends, their friend's tell 10 more people, so on and so forth.
So much for the little GM dealer...they are BIG liars!
"YOU CAN COUNT ON US!"
No you can't!
The dealership will always win. All you can do is get a fair deal. Please make sure you get it.
There are many many sites on the web devoted to avoiding mistakes on buying any car. Take the time to read them....
Santa Cruz, New Mexico
U.S.A.Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on GM & GM Products Products