Message Font: Serif | Sans-Serif
 
No. of Recommendations: 0
All right, someone help me out here.

My wife and I are trying to buy a Suburban from an individual. The asking price is $17K and the book value is $20K, so I jumped on the deal. I get all the financing taken care of, and the seller and I are moving into the final, paperwork phase before I hand him a check. Suddenly, this morning, out of the blue, he lobs this little bombshell at me.

"By the way," he says over the phone, "I forgot to mention that you are going to have to pay $1500 to the XYZ leasing company where I got this vehicle. It's for tax, title, and license and stuff, but I'm not too sure about it. I'll have the lease guy give you a call."

Needless to say, I'm taken aback. Immediately, my first question (to the members of this board) is: Can you sell a car to the general public when you are leasing it from someone else?

Second, shouldn't he have increased his asking price to cover the costs of him getting out of this lease? This sounds like the old "Here's the keys to the house you just bought; by the way, the title's not clear. There's a lien on it that you are now responsible for." I know, I know, if I bought the car at a dealership, I would have to pay the TTL, but I can't see how this is the same situation. At a dealership I pay the TTL as part of the purchase price of the vehicle to the dealership, not some third-party who shows up as I'm signing the paperwork. Same way, when I buy Fig Newtons at Wal-Mart, the price does not reflect the sales tax, but I know about the sales tax when I walk into the store, and I pay the sales tax to Wal-Mart, not some guy sitting at a table out in the parking lot.

Am I simply mistaken here? Coming up with the $1500 will be a deal-breaker--I won't be able to afford the higher payments. I'm either smelling a rat or I'm about to be hooked like a fish.

James A. Brown
Print the post  

Announcements

Beware Flood-Damaged Cars
Know what you are getting, don't get stuck with a Katrina victim. Check these links before you buy.
Disclaimer - Please Read
A message about professional advice.
What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.