AmeriCredit — Unfair business practices!
In 2001 I purchased a used car through Courtesy Pontiac in Las Vegas and signed a financing agreement with the dealership. The terms were 60 months and a $30. late fee for late payments. I lost my job just after 9-11 and then got sick. I struggled to make the payments and several were late.
I made the last payment and paid all the late fees only to find out that I still owed $2,500. According to Americredit I did not sign a defined payment loan as I was lead to believe but a simple interest loan with no defined terms or conditions.
The terms and conditions printed on the front of the contract were put there to satisfy the FTC requirements of disclosure but did not reflect the actual terms of the loan. When you turn over the contract there is a single paragraph that informs you that your are actually signing a simple interest loan and that the terms and conditions may differ from what is disclosed on the front of the loan.
Never having financed a car at a dealership before, I always went to a bank, I never expected to be taken for a ride like I am on now. I keep paying towards the $2,500 but the interest is still being added daily. This is addition to the 60 payments and late fees already paid.
Americredit tells me that it is not their problem. They bought the contract from the dealership and if they didn't explain the terms properly then it is my fault for not asking. I expect that thousands of Americans are being gouged with this practice.
Make sure that you ask before you sign "Is this a simple interest loan?" If it is shop elsewhere! If you are late once you will be charged thousands of dollars even though you paid all of the payments and late fee. Check with your credit union or local bank. Stick to small banks that offer defined payment loans. Never sign a simple interest loan unless you are absolutely sure you will never and I mean never make a payment late.
Write you congressman, Senator and the Federal Trade Commission demanding that this bait and switch practice be stopped. By the way Americredit refuses to reduce the balance and continues to threaten they will charge off the account even though payments are being made to reduce the alleged principal.