Complaint is regarding their dishonest business practices, excessive credit inquiries, and failure to help make the situation right.
I visited ******** BMW Northlake 2/15/16. I had previously contacted them on their website and set an appointment to drive a used Honda Pilot that afternoon. I explained over the phone prior to setting my appointment that I needed longer term financing due to the negative equity on my vehicle, but that my credit was good enough to carry such a loan. The Internet Manager stated that it was reasonable and to come in. Once I arrived, my vehicle was appraised and I completed a test drive of the vehicle. The test drive went great, and my husband and I decided to move forward with the credit application to apply for financing. We had already discussed a sales price and term, and I was told 72 months financing is available. Although my trade number was low, I wanted to move forward and let them submit us over to a few banks. I verbally stated to our salesperson, ******* that I did not want to be submitted to more than 3 banks, my credit score was over a 750 and my credit shouldn't have to be sent to many banks. Since he was kind and professional so far, I didn't think twice about it.
I left for lunch to have the finance manager submit my application, and I waited in the Huntersville area for an answer. After 2 hours the business manager, ****** called to let me know he could get 4.99% for 72 months with BMW Financial. This call was taken in the presence of myself, my husband, and his colleague, who all heard the terms and rate. I thought it over and agreed to the deal. I drove over and began the paperwork process around 4PM that same afternoon.
Once we finished the basic paperwork, my husband and I went to the business office with ****** who has quoted us 4.99% for 72 months on the phone. We started to sign the legal contract, bill of sale, power of attorney.. all that. When it came to the final paper with the lender, rate, and terms, ***** froze up and stated he was having a mistake with his computer. He was unable to print the final page of the loan contract. He excused himself and left the office. He came back several minutes later, sat down, and said "don't be mad, but there is a mistake. BMW Financial doesn't offer 72 months financing for your car, only BMW vehicles. Sorry, I can't do anything." After asking what had changed from 3 hours ago to now, ***** simply stated he made a mistake and cant change it. "I can get you 60 months financing, but nothing else".
As mad as I was, my husband and I left. My husband called and complained to the GM, but he didn't offer any apology either, just something to the effect of "It was a mistake and mistakes happen".
We let it be, and the next day I checked my credit report to see how many inquiries we had incurred. Lo and behold, I was submitted to 7 banks, after asking to be sent to 3 maximum! Some of the banks I was submitted to were subprime lenders, who any finance manager of any quality should know not to submit a A+ customer to. I called ***** the following afternoon (2/16/16). Mind you, this man had never once called me to apologize for wasting my whole day or lying to me over the phone, but I kept calm and politely asked him to remove some of the excessive credit inquiries; after the way I was treated and lied to, I think this was reasonable. He retorted he did not know how to do that and would not be able to help me. Because of my background in the automotive industry, I explained to him how to do such a thing (write a letter to the credit bureau with details explaining the error and asking it be removed). He stated he would do it the following day, which would be 2/17/16, and call me back. I have not heard a response, and have chosen to have the BBB assist with my request.
I am asking that Hendrick BMW Northlake keep at least one of their verbal commitments and remove at least 3 of the excessive credit inquiries from mine and my husband's credit reports.
I apologize for the delay in responding to Mrs. ****'s concern. I will type my response early Monday or Tuesday of next week and reach out to the client as well to discuss the issue.
There is no debating that we made a mistake in saying that we could offer the 72 month term when it wasn't possible and when we make a mistake we need to step up and work to make it right.
I am researching the credit submissions and will have all the details later today so I can review and also address that concern and request for documentation.
Again, I apologize for the delay and I will be in touch with both the BBB and the client the first part of next week.
******** BMW Northlake
From: ***** **** (mailto:***********@yahoo.com)
Sent: Monday, March 14, XXXX X:XX PM
To: Better Business Bureau <************@bbb-email.org>
Subject: Re: BBB Complaint Case# ****** (Ref#XX-XXXXXX-XXXXXX-X-XXXX)
I will be satisfied and able to close this complaint once at least 3 of those excessive credit inquiries have been removed and proof of such can be provided.
Please let me know what further steps on my end need to be taken.
Final Business Response
First off, I apologize for just now sending you a response. I've been in a managerial role for over a dozen years for the ******** Organization and have always valued and respected the BBB process. So again, I apologize for just now sending this.
In regard to Mrs. ****'s concern I would like to address in two parts because there are two issues described in her complaint. First off, the experience we provided is not consistent with the expectations we have of ourselves and I apologize for the mistake in regard to the available rate and then not being responsive to your concerns after realizing our mistake. In now way was this a pre-meditated error with any ill intent but I do see how you could view it that way. Again, I apologize for the experience provided and would like to make things right moving forward.
In terms of the credit inquiries, again I apologize that we weren't forthright in explaining to you how many lenders we were submitting your loan to in an attempt to locate the best possible solution to a situation that was created by our error. As Mrs. **** knows from being in the business it is a common practice to submit a client to multiple lenders to locate the best possible rate, term, or combo of the two for the client. The credit scoring system takes this into account by consolidating any credit inquiries that occur within a 45 day period for the purpose of acquiring auto, mortgage, or student loans because it is in the consumer's best interest to send to multiple lenders and the reporting agencies don't want to impact that process. As long as the credit inquiries occur within a 45 day window and all are related to the auto, mortgage, or student loan process there isn't a penalty for excessive inquiries. The initial inquiry can possibly impact a credit score by 5 points or so but subsequent inquiries having to do with the same auto loan (like what we have in this instance) would not cause additional negative reporting. If it did we wouldn't submit to the group of lenders we are partnered with but choose only one and go with that rate. THat wouldn't be to the benefit of our clients though.
In the end, I don't like how frustrated Mrs. **** is with the experience she had with us, particularly since it was partially the result of us making a mistake and thinking that a term was available that ultimately wasn't because of the year of the vehicle being considered for purchase. I know Mrs. **** was looking at a Honda Pilot at our store and if she would like to let me know the vehicle she ended up purchasing I will be more than happy to set her up for free oil changes, tire rotations, and a state inspection for the next year of ownership. I would be more than willing to take care of this for her at BMW NOrthlake if that is convenient or can contact the closest ******** store to facilitate this arrangement if that would be preferable. In regard to the removing a credit inquiry I will certainly see what our options are but due to the way that lenders and reporting agencies handle multiple inquiries for an auto loan I don't think there is an actual benefit for Mr. and Mrs. **** like there is if we take care of oil changes, rotations, and the NCSI for a year.
THank you for your patience and I apologize again for the delayed response.
******** BMW NOrthlake