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Robert.123.321.456.789
Novice

Jul 5, 2021, 12:43 PM

Post #1 of 10 (293 views)
  post locked   Shop payments  

This is not a car repair question, but more of an industry complaint.
When I go to get my car repaired, I am treated very poorly, like I am not treated by any other industry.
First, to start, I am a courier, so my car isn't transportation, so much as a piece of equipment I need to perform (and keep!!!) my job.
The problem comes in several fold.
The part that is ruining my life is that car shops ransom my car for their money, which I have never refused to pay. They do not tell me until I get there how much it will be, and do not tell me in advance when they will want money, either. No notice, yet they ransom my car and upset everything, instead of allowing me to pay stress free.
I know what I spend in a year on car repairs. I can save it in 8 or 9 months, really. The problem is, the mechanics demand their money right then and there, and do not allow me to perform my job until I pay their ransom. It's no different than what was done with the pipeline recently.
The shop wants $1800 (or whatever) immediately or they will not allow me to go to work, when they did not give me any notice whatsoever to have a chance to adjust. The thing is, I've only had the chance to save up, let's say, $1200 since the last ransom demand. I can get the $600 from my next paycheck, but it's never good enough. They want my rent money instead. Now, I have to re-do the rent that I had already put aside. I can't get on a budget, because none of the shops will tell me how much and when, and the only amounts they charge is more than the amount that I have set aside at the moment for car repairs. They refuse to live within bounds. They expect me to readjust thousands of dollars within ten seconds.
How do I fix this in the industry? How can I be treated like a human being?


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Jul 5, 2021, 1:13 PM

Post #2 of 10 (283 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

LOL, you gotta be kidding.

These places are not banks. They are not in the business of loaning money. They repair cars. They have to pay for the parts they put into your car when they buy them.

If you want a payment plan, then get a credit card but I suspect that isn't an option for you for obvious reasons.

If you are authorizing them to make these repairs, then you have to pay for them before you get your car back.



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Robert.123.321.456.789
Novice

Jul 5, 2021, 1:37 PM

Post #3 of 10 (273 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

Well, then, why not tell me? I will want $2500 on July 29. What's wrong with telling me that? Everyone else does.


The shops get terms of net 10, net 15, net 30, etc., and the technician employees do not get paid until the following week or even the week after that depending on the payroll cycle.

BTW, my credit score is actually >750, so I can get a credit card. I was irresponsible in a prior life, and credit cards is how I got into trouble. So why go back?

I bring that up to set the record straight. I do not have this problem with any other industry. If the problem was me, this problem would exist across industries, but when it is unique to only one and one alone, it's obvious where the problem is.

Plus, they want their money immediately, but do not start on my car immediately. Think about that one.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Jul 5, 2021, 1:43 PM

Post #4 of 10 (269 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

The law varies from state to state but in most states you are entitled to an estimate of repairs that you can either accept of reject. If you reject it you may have tear down or diagnostic charges owed.

If you approve the work to be done, then you pay the bill before you get your car back. That's the way it works.



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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Jul 5, 2021, 1:56 PM

Post #5 of 10 (265 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

Walk a mile in the shoes of a mechanic! It is the most complained about biz out there folks don't realize THAT huge cost isn't all profit lots of repair is down time for parts or if tricky on well used just going to bust things to do something easy then. Time to fix busted? Who has to pay for that?
Asking for time it will be tied up and exact price is done but IMO a bad joke. IDK how bad something will look when part way into it so if you forced a price would be cost of the whole car and be less than that.


Time? There are time books for most ordinary services and repairs then there's all the rest find out it's a horror show.


Fully understood I/we who do or did this have your transportation if nothing else. Rent a car or some do loaners you are paying for that somewhere.


Nature of the biz it's taking away your vehicle for the time and does cost just to park it where I am plain space is so costly don't leave it when done either!
It's long hours, standing up or bent over with horrid dirt, grime, chemicals and go home like that spend an hour just trying to look human again!
Ask what policy places have that will work for you. It's that or like many have a spare whole vehicle so the show never stops.


No easy answer to this. Just do know how costly it is to be able to even do it is shocking! In general no financing repair that's for banks and credit cards shops already had to pay up front (many) for being able to help you!


Tom
PS: A person or shop out to steal from you is a thief - doesn't matter if purposely misleading you or charging for what isn't done is no different than plain stealing!


Tom



Robert.123.321.456.789
Novice

Jul 5, 2021, 3:06 PM

Post #6 of 10 (254 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

They still will not tell me until my car is already at the shop. I need to know a few paychecks in advance. I'm not saying it wouldn't suck, but that is a lot easier to adjust.

See, here's where the ransom comes in. You are saying I can reject the work like I have free choice. I DON'T!!!! I have no way of performing my job if I reject the work. I am being given a choice of losing my job OR paying my rent. I am not sure who these people think they are to have that much control over someone's life with a clear conscience.

Yes, I have a second car, but that is capable of breaking down, too. That is there as a backup, for a very brief period of time, say if something cannot be fixed immediately. It has to be back up and running right away. I am an independent courier/deliveryperson.

Real life example: My car's brakes were getting low. The normal thing would have been to take it in for pads. I was afraid, though, of the car being ransomed. I had no clue what the job would entail, and I know I did not have $5,000 at the time, to cover what else they would find. So, I waited, for a couple more paychecks to come in. Unfortunately, the pads wore down to the rotors. I STILL had to wait for an extra paycheck, as I was afraid of my car being ransomed for my auto repair money PLUS my rent money PLUS my money for my other bills PLUS my gas money PLUS an additional $10,000.
I finally took it in, as the car was almost disabled. Now, I had to pay for 2 rotors and 2 calipers instead of just pads. They ransomed my car, instead of just taking care of the pads when they should have been taken care of. If I did not have the money that day, they would have been paid in full by the same day they ransomed my car.

Point is, they would have been paid by the same day, probably sooner, if they had NOT ransomed my car.

They chose to get payment that particular day by ransoming my car, instead of that day or sooner by NOT ransoming my car. Why would they not want it sooner with less drama?

That's the kind of carp that I am tired of from the automotive repair industry. They chose to get into a business servicing something that is important in people's lives, and in my case essential to my whole livelihood. But instead of treating people like human beings, they choose to be controlling. I have never been treated like this by ANY other industry. It's not "just a car". I need these shops to treat people like people instead of transactions.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Jul 5, 2021, 3:19 PM

Post #7 of 10 (249 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

OK, it's time for you to grow up buttercup.



Quote
They still will not tell me until my car is already at the shop. I need to know a few paychecks in advance.


That is the most ridiculous statement I ever heard.

You bring your car in for repair, you pay for the repairs. It's as simple as that. You keep driving a car after the symptoms appear, you make the job cost more. These people operate a business and they need to be paid for their work.



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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



(This post was edited by Hammer Time on Jul 5, 2021, 3:19 PM)


Robert.123.321.456.789
Novice

Jul 5, 2021, 3:38 PM

Post #8 of 10 (245 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

Tom: Yes, I realize that auto shops are high overhead, so we are in agreement there. It's rare that I would ever have zero immediately. Let's say that I have $1,000 right away. Not always the full cost of that repair, I understand that, but it can go a long way, and in many cases covers the hard costs of parts that may not be due to the parts supplier for as much as 2 weeks anyhow. Many times I would have more. In others, I might even have the full repair cost right way. But the car is ransomed, in some cases, for the $400 that I don't have that second, but will have within a week when I get paid, when I had already budgeted $700 for the auto repair account. Instead, they want it out of my rent money, and I am late on my rent, when they already told me the amount and due date MONTHS IN ADVANCE!!!!!

These shops just need to think that the amount they ask for is in some cases one or two entire paychecks for some people. I just can't fathom asking someone for that big of a chunk of their income and/or net worth all at once.

I just need shops to stop with the idea that the customers are banks themselves. So very few make $100 per hour like auto shops do. Very few make 1/4 of that, for that matter. Again, I understand that is gross, but still I just have to bring that up for illustration.

There's one other thing that applies to my case, as a courier. My car being down is equivalent to having the electricity off, and every lift and the air compressor broken. Neither one of us can operate our businesses like that. The difference is, I basically lose my job, as my contract gets cancelled instantaneously for non-performance. I lose my entire business. The auto shop, however, is still in operation once the crisis passes.

I'm just seeking advice on how to get an auto shop to work with the customer.


Robert.123.321.456.789
Novice

Jul 5, 2021, 3:50 PM

Post #9 of 10 (243 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

Nowhere in this post have I suggested that mechanics shouldn't get paid for what they do. But everyone else tells me in advance what is due and when, or at least gives me some general idea. Auto shops are the only entities that do not. That is why they are causing problems.

Yes, auto shops should get paid. You say that as though I feel they should not. They should. Please take yes for an answer.

When you spring a cost 0on someone with no notification and expect them to pay it right then and there, that is ransom. If I have a choice in the matter, then it is simple payment for services. If not, they need to realize that I do not have a printing press!!!!


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Jul 5, 2021, 3:55 PM

Post #10 of 10 (239 views)
  post locked   Re: Shop payments  

OK, this has gone on long enough.

Your car is not ransom, it's collateral. That's the way it works. You pay for what you receive, WHEN you receive it.

I'm closing this now as you just don't get it. Stop blaming the shop for your shortfalls.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.







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