Why did the auto dealer not want to sign the purchase order before getting the check from my bank?

Can a dealer have me sign an agreed-upon purchase order for a new car, then have me submit it to my pre-approved bank lender without the dealer’s signature on the purchase order?

Answer
Yes, a dealer can have you sign a purchase order and submit it to your bank for approval before they sign and finalize the sale.
Once signed, purchase orders are legally binding and provide an itemized list of every cost and fee part of the transaction, so the dealer wants to make sure your loan has been fully approved, and everything is in order before signing.
The dealer was right not to sign, and you also shouldn’t agree to a purchase order until your bank reviews the agreement, fully approves your loan, and provides you with a check addressed to the dealer. If any changes are made to the purchase order, you should have your bank review the changes and confirm the following are correct:
  • The negotiated selling price
  • The down payment
  • The applicable fees and taxes
  • The VIN
  • The vehicle description
  • The odometer reading
  • Any manufacturer or dealer rebates you qualify for
  • Any add-ons or included benefits
After finalizing the sale, don’t forget you will need car insurance before you can drive your new car home! To quickly and easily compare quotes from over 50 top insurance companies, including Nationwide, Allstate, and Travelers, download Jerry. A licensed broker that offers end-to-end support, the Jerry app gathers affordable quotes, helps you switch plans, and will even help you cancel your old policy. The average Jerry driver saves $879 a year on car insurance!
Jack Walsh
Answered on Nov 03, 2021
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