Car buyers, your voices have been heard! Queensland Senator Glenn Lazarus has announced a policy which aims to protect car buyers.
According to Lazarus, Australians are buying over one million new cars per year but have no protection when it comes to defective units and other problems. 75% of new car buyers in Australia experience problems within the first five years of their purchase and up to 15% of these people are never able to resolve these issues.
And I just got this today!
This struggle between consumers and car dealers before is nothing new, and we covered similar ground before when we talked about the ACCC investigating the high volume of complaints from car buyers.
Again, the dealers are being put on the defensive as they have been cited as being unhelpful, failing to acknowledge problems, and whose repairs are not fixing the problems. This leaves consumers in debt, and unable to sell their faulty car to recoup some of their money
While Australia has protection laws for consumers and bodies for fair trading, there’s really no protection in place for consumers which will force car manufacturers and dealers to address complaints and vehicle issues.
It’s surprising to note that countries around the world have successfully implemented lemon laws but Australia has yet to implement its own.
The growing pressure on car manufacturers and retailers to cater to the consumers’ needs after the sale will make life much easier for us now that we will have measures in place. Harsher penalties and stricter monitoring will require dealers to attempt to address vehicle complaints through repairs. If the problem persists, then the part or even the vehicle itself will have to be replaced, or refunded.
Purchasing a new car is indeed a very big investment, one that, until now, comes with no assurance that you will be getting your money’s worth after you drive out of the showroom.
For the more frugal car buyer, for whom buying a brand new car may be too much, leasing a used or near new vehicle is sometimes the cheaper and safer alternative. For one thing, all the hidden kinks and quirks of the vehicle would have been worked out by now, and all that you need to deal with are maintenance duties as a result of a vehicle’s normal wear and tear.
The other benefit would be the decrease in cost. When you drive a new car out of the showroom, it would have already lost 25% of its value due to depreciation. Buying a pre-owned car does not have that drawback as its price would already reflect its depreciated value. Companies such as Alpha Car Finance can help you get a near new car within 1-2 days of paying.
Thanks to Senator Glenn Lazarus and the efforts of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, owning a car will soon involve much less hassles and headaches.