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about 1 month ago
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Warning against a car dealership and a note on Fair Trading : First of all, I hope that I'm not breaking any of /r/sydney rules by posting this. If I do though, let me know. I just want to warn against a shady business, hoping that I'll help someone that's about to make the same mistake as I did. Also, since I'm probably not the best writer, I'm happy to clarify anything or fill any missing details if it seems too chaotic. tl;dr: there are two takeaways from me: Please stay away from the car dealership "Carmart" (also possibly trading under "United Fleet Sales"), located at 35 Queens Rd, Five Dock, NSW 2046. Or anyone working there, in particular the dealer going by name Barry Morris. They are the most repulsive, lying and unhelpful humans I've ever met. Please do not hesitate to go to Fair Trading as soon as you smell some issue with a business/dealer. They have been very helpful, understanding, and—most importantly—very quick. In majority of cases you're protected by consumer laws, which are very broad and can be argued in your favour. Also from 1 January FT will have power to order repair/replacement of goods under $3000, which should speed up the process. I bought a used car last month from Barry working at above dealership, a car that broke down exactly after 30 minutes from driving away (I know it was exactly 30 minutes thanks to Google Timeline). As it turned out much later, the shift cable got loose and the engine wouldn't start as the gear was stuck on "drive". The car looked in good condition when buying and during test drive, and it did not have a warranty (it was too old and had too much mileage), but fortunately there's this thing called Australian Consumer Law. The car came from a dealership and not private owner, which meant I could expect at least some assistance from the dealer. I called Barry a few minutes after it happened, and he offered that someone will come to see the car the next day. As you can guess... nobody came. I called Barry the next day around 4pm, asking if he's coming, and he said something that left me dumbfounded. He said that it was "too wet for him to come" (it was lightly raining that day). Of course, it's common knowledge that traffic in Sydney stops as soon as first raindrops hit the ground. Over the course of next two days I called him, and the office, and always heard the same thing: someone is coming, they will call me back, nobody could come today but definitely will tomorrow and so on Worth noting is that I also sent an email to the office and then spoke with a female staff working there, and another dealer (Brendan Morris). Both of them said exactly the same things, used the same excuses and made the same promises. I'd understand if it was just one person lying to me, but it was an entire business (a family business, I presume) lacking any decency. I consulted with a few friends and everybody told me to lodge a complaint with Fair Trading as soon as possible, which I did. Funny thing is that when I mentioned the Consumer Law or Fair Trading to Barry, he said (quote) "it's not how it's working", "we're doing it my way or no way", "FT will take at least a few weeks to start processing the case", "the motor vehicle inspector from FT is just some guy in the office" (suggesting that they know nothing about cars). To my surprise, FT notified me over the phone on the next business day after lodging a complain that a motor vehicle inspector was assigned to my case, and he called me next day. He confirmed details what happened, then he called the dealership (which claimed eg. that they "were waiting for information from me how to access the car"). As you can assume, nothing happened for the next two days—I only got a phone call from Barry immediately after FT called him, assuring that "he's sending someone over". It's been more than 10 days now that the car was not operational. After that, FT gave me green light to start repairing the car myself and then ask the dealer to pay for repairs. Slightly funny thing happened next: I presume FT contacted the dealer and told them I'm repairing the car myself, because for the first time since this story started they actually tried to call me! And they even sent me a few text messages, stating that they are ready and waiting to see the car, that they are waiting for my response, that they have time now, that they could shorten the process etc. I politely replied that the car is being repaired by a mechanic of my choice and FT will inspect the car. I organized towing of the car to the nearby garage, and all necessary repairs, and now the car is operational. The dealer told FT's inspector that they will pay for repairs, but I don't trust any single word coming from them. I asked the inspector to mediate in getting the money back. Icing on the cake was when I tried to transfer the rego: I couldn't do it online, because of course, even though I was assured during purchase that all necessary documents have been sent to Road & Maritime Services or whoever keeps track of regos, they didn't send anything. I went to Service NSW, only to learn that the dealer needs to provide you with Form 5 when selling a used car, and without that rego cannot be transferred. I only had a sales contract with me (which I also noticed was not signed by the dealer—yes, that one is totally on me...), and in the end I had to sign a statutory declaration in front of JP that I bought this car on this date for this amount. I got talked into buying a lemon car. Or the car randomly decided to break just after purchasing. Might be just my bad luck. But I cannot even begin to comprehend the seller's behaviour and attitude. It's disgusting. It would be way better if they outright told me that it's my fault for not checking the car, rather than giving me false hope that they are going to help. PS Another takeaway is pretty obvious in hindsight, but please read reviews on Google Maps and other places before buying anything. My another mistake was checking it post factum—probably 2.4 stars and a few stories similar to mine would discourage me from buying anything there. - Full Article

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