Better Call Harry: What every used car buyer needs to know

Source: WGCL

Here’s a little-known fact about buying a used car.

In Metro Atlanta, the car cannot be sold unless it has passed an emissions inspection. But many car lots ignore the rule, so when a Peachtree City car buyer learned her car had failed, she decided she’d Better Call Harry.

When Veronica Bonner got the job at Fayette Senior Services, let’s just say her number got called. She loves working with seniors.

The job is part-time and it’s about 20 minutes from her Peachtree City home. It’s an easy drive if she could drive.

“It’s been, oh my God, just so devastating to my life,” she said.

Bonner bought a new car. Well, new for her, and not a bad deal for $3,400.

“Everything looked perfect, and actually I drove it and it drove perfect,” she said.

Finny’s Cars in Alpharetta sold her the car but did so without providing one important document required in 13 metro Atlanta counties: a passed emissions certificate.

“This car was one of my customer’s cars, and I just sold it to her,” Mr. Finny said.

He admitted that he sold the car without an emission certificate only because she wanted to take the car home that day.

“I told her that I would do the emissions on the car,” Finny said.

When Bonner’s car failed emissions, she took the car back. Days turned into weeks. Without her car, she could have lost her job.

But how’s this for good fortune? Fayette Senior Services has a ride service. Bonner qualified and she’s getting to work, but where’s her car?

Finny said he’s already spent $1,000 trying to make the emissions repair. A week later, Bonner got her car.

For $3,400, this car is nice. And it’s legal. Now Bonner gets to do what she’s wanted to do for a month: she’s driving home.

We give Bonner a lot of credit. She did her research and discovered the state law requiring the seller to provide a passed emissions certificate. That check engine light could end up costing you thousands of dollars.

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Copyright 2018 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Investigative Reporter

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