LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. - After a car dealership promised her financing despite her credit, a local woman walked away with a car. But when that financing fells through, she returned the car, but didn't get her cash. That's when she made a "Call for Action."
"They were refusing to give me my money back or refusing even to talk to me," explained Diana McDowell. "They were even threatening-well, if you're not going to leave, we can call the authorities and make you leave. So at that point, I didn't know what to do. So I used my smartphone to give WINK a call."
Diana was digging herself out of three years of financial difficulties when she got an offer to buy a car.
"They said they can get me approved regardless of my credit history, come on in," she recalled.
After putting down $3,000 and signing a contract, she learned her financing fell through. She immediately offered to return the car but claims they reassured her they would find financing. After 30 days of waiting, Diana decided not to wait any longer.
"So at that point I slept on it, on the 30 days and I came back on 31 days and said I can't do this," she told WINK.
That's when the dealership told her she'd have to pay for the 30 days she was driving the car.
"They got $3,000 of my money already. So it was, I was just in tears at that point," Diana explained. "You didn't tell me anything about these mileage charges... I was like, I'm walking off, here's your car, tell me what you're going to give me, I have the calculator and tell me what you're going to do," said Diana.
She got $1,500 back right away but the other $1,500, she didn't know if she'd ever see again. That's when she called WINK.
"The car dealership had a 180-degree and called me like, 'Oh, we have your $1,500. You know, we really didn't mean to take it from you.' And it was a totally different story than what they were selling me before. And it had to be WINK," said Diana.
Our team of Call for Action volunteers made one phone call to the dealership and that's all it took for them to change their tune and refund Diana her money.
We're always looking for more volunteers to help with our Call for Action team. If you're interested, or if you have a consumer problem yourself, you can call 1-800-795-9465 Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1p.m. Or you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.