Recently I spent a few hours walking a friend around the park. We talked about our work and family. We shared a few laughs. The two of us enjoyed each other’s company for a few hours. I walked her back to her car, and on the back bumper I saw a large black patch of what looked like sandy tar.
I asked her what the black mess was. She told me that she found a large dent in her car and these men that were walking by her work saw the dent and offered to fix it for half the cost of the mechanic. She said she paid the men $100 up front and they put on a layer of “primer” and that they would be coming back to fix it later.
I told her they weren’t going to come back. She laughed and said they would. They didn’t.
Car Maintenance Scams
This isn’t even close to the first time a friend or family member has been scammed, and it certainly won’t be the last. I remember the same scam happened to my dad over 15 years ago. He had a few dents in his car, some men offered to fix it. They took half the money up front, drilled two holes in the car, and never came back.
You Get What You Pay For
In today’s economy, it makes sense for car owners to find any way they can to save money on their car maintenance repairs. Yet always remember that if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Trusting your car and your money to strangers may seem like a good idea when you find out how much you save, but these are still strangers, and strangers have no accountability.
Even if the individual is a good person, the temptation to take the money without doing the work is strong. Don’t fall for these car repair scams. If a stranger tells you that they can fix your dents for you, politely decline and take your car to the nearest repair shop instead. The accountability of a storefront is worth the extra money you have to pay for the repairs.