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Used car dealers lead Oregon consumer complaints

Mar 17, 2013


SALEM — Used-car dealers top the list of Oregon businesses receiving the most consumer complaints filed with the state.

The Oregon Department of Justice received 11,625 consumer complaints in 2012, according to the Statesman Journal.

Complaints about telemarketers accounted for the largest share, but only about one-third of those complaints were about Oregon-based businesses.

More than one-third of the used-car dealer complaints centered on failure to disclose previous damage. Consumers also complained about failure to provide a title and about cars that did not meet Department of Environmental Quality emission standards.

Many complaints about used-car dealers could be avoided if consumers would have vehicles inspected by a mechanic before they buy them, said Dan Nicholson, president of the Oregon Independent Automobile Dealer Association.

“You do your best to try to keep your customers happy,” the Redmond car dealer said. “But there's many times where customers’ expectations are a little high. If you're selling a car with a hundred thousand miles on it, there may be some things wrong with the car.”

Others high on the complaints list were video rental stores, timeshare resellers, magazine subscription services and hair, nail and skin care services.

Hollywood Video, which has been out of business for three years, accounted for all but two of the complaints about video rental companies. Collection agencies still are aggressively trying to collect on old rental accounts.

Universal Timeshare Sales Associates of Beaverton accounted for almost 90 percent of the complaints against timeshare resellers. Timeshare resellers offer to sell and market vacation properties or timeshares.

“Usually the company is contacting people and saying they have ready buyers,” said Kyle Kavas, Oregon public relations manager for the Better Business Bureau. “They collect a fee but they never submit any paperwork or contract.”

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Information from: Statesman Journal, http://www.statesmanjournal.com

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