By: Revanche

Damage control

December 22, 2008

I’m still horribly embarrassed about the whole car situation. But I’m dealing with it, and this is what I did:

1. Called my dad and had him authorize me to call the financing company. Very very important: they were refusing to deal with me at all, even with his authorization, until it became clear that they would only get money from me.

2. Took down their phone number, account number, SSN, balance to bring the account current, charges for the towing company.

3. Spoke to the company asking them for the procedure to bring the account current or to pay it off entirely.

A) to bring the account current, the owner must:
i) fax verification of employment/income
ii) fax proof of residence
iii) fax three references, one of which must be a family member not living in the household, listed with names, phone numbers and relationship to owner.
iv) fax proof of insurance
v) send payment of the late balance including a $125 repossession fee via money order or wire from the bank: $1932
vi) pay the towing company ($140 for four business days, Fri-Mon)

B) to pay it off entirely, the owner must:
i) wire the payoff balance (good until 12/29): $5611
ii) wait for the paperwork to be processed and sent to the towing company, then make arrangements for pickup for the company. Also ($140 for four business days, Fri-Mon)

4) Apparently our local police department gets in on the deal and has to issue a release costing another $15 before the towing company in another city will release the car. (Of course, why not?)

Thoughts and other obstacles: the timing of this on a Friday works to the towing company’s advantage because they charge $35 for every day that the vehicle is in their lot.

Just because the financing company says that you have 20 days before the car is moved to the auction lot, doesn’t mean it’s true. If the company has a pickup of other vehicles scheduled before your 20 days are up – and that’s calendar days, folks, not business days – then they’ll take your vehicle as well. The financing company rep warned me of this when I asked her, “is there anything else, at all, you think I should know? I’ve never dealt with this before and want to make sure I cover my bases.”

The towing company only has specific hours for releasing towed vehicles, so if your paperwork and payments don’t hit the financing company, and their paperwork isn’t released and received by the towing company, during the specific window, you wait another day, and pay another $35. This company closes at 4 pm sharp, which is another great way for them to make money. Who gets out of work before 4 pm?

Finis: I’m going with Route A because I’m not ready to dig out over 5k worth of cash. I am dismayed at the prospect of not only NOT taking the truck off my balance sheet, but adding the responsibility of another vehicle, but right this moment, I don’t have a choice.

One quarter of the cost will clean out my auto maintenance fund, the rest of the money will come out of my expense fund. It’ll wreck my cushion, for the most part, but psychologically, I’d rather raid the cushion before the emergency fund. I might have to hit that with moving costs soon.

And lastly, I had a serious discussion with my dad. On Friday, upset, I told him that if this happened again, I was leaving and never looking back. I realized that wasn’t good enough, and told him on Saturday that I’m not waiting for it to happen again. He had to promise he would never lie to me or hide important things from me to “protect” me, when he’s really just protecting his wounded pride, or I was outta here, permanently. I can only pray that taking a hard stance will shake him enough to take me seriously, but I’m also serious. I’m not strong enough to continue living my life, looking over my shoulder, waiting for people to lie to me because my own family can’t do better than that. All or nothing, folks.

3 Responses to “Damage control”

  1. *another huge hug* (Google reader has been down.. am starting to catch up on your blog the old school way, by going to your memorized URL :P)

    But at least you have it under control now.

    And now I know more about car leases and what happens if you default.


    It’s like you’re just hitting a wall in getting through to them. You think you make progress and then this goes and happens.

    It’s just so frustrating.

  2. I’m really sorry to hear you had to go through all this–really the last thing you needed on your plate at this moment! I hope your dad can be honest with you in the future, and they are really really lucky to have a daughter like you!

  3. Revanche says:

    FB: I had reader down as well, and am still catching up.

    It’s relatively under control: until the car is home and I review the paperwork with him, and work it into my budget, the nightmare is only partially over.

    Who would have thought that I’d be informing the public of how to deal with a repo?

    SP: Lemme tell ya, variety is so not the necessary spice of my life. 😛 It’s starting to feel like I should be asking HIM, “Is there anything else I need to know???”

    My fingers are crossed that something good comes of this.

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