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Discussion Starter #1
Is there anyone who is/was a dealer or who otherwise has actual knowledge regarding advertising and doc fees?

As I mentioned in another post, when I went to sign the final paperwork for my 2019 Enclave a few days ago the general manager came in and got very upset and rude when I asked about these fees and tried to negotiate them.

He told me that advertising fees are mandatory and are required to be passed on to the buyer, and that by law in New Mexico he's required to charge a $394 doc fee, in addition to the state title and license fees, if the dealer processes the title and license.

Information from online sources says that advertising fees are optional for the dealer who can choose to participate or not, and if he does then they are negotiable, and that doc fees are not required.

After a very unpleasant discussion I ended up paying the full $890 for advertising fees and $394 doc fee just to get out of there.
 

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Dealers find a way to get you to sign and then add onto the price after the fact. It's the nature of the business.
I just bought a Certified Equinox recently. The listing was internet price, We were only looking at CPO vehicles, they had both used and CPO advertised with internet pricing. When we went to close the deal the salesman tried to add on $500 for certification. I informed him that the internet listing showed the set price for a CPO and we we not going to pay another $500, he went to his manager and they agreed to honor the original price , lucky me.
Also, they try to add on the window etching for $150, even though the lessee already paid that when they leased the vehicle, the dealer thinks they can charge it again. this salesman did say that is the only fee that is negotiable. The dealer charged us like $400 for DOC fees but then refunded about $180 when we picked up the plates.
When I bought a CPO Enclave they did honor the internet advertised price with no certification markup. The window etching was automatically added and we were told that is not negotiable, even though the lessee already paid it once. I didn't mind paying it, I had gotten a good deal on the vehicle. Again, they over charged DOC fees, but then refunded the difference when we picked up the plates.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
At least you got a small refund. I paid $1300 extra that I'll never see again based on what I believe to be false information.


Unless someone can correct me, neither ad fees nor doc fees are mandatory, and even if they were there is nothing that says they couldn't be negotiated. If a dealer chooses to participate in local/regional advertising that's his choice and is a cost of business, not my responsibility. Doc fees are a pure money grab. It does not cost $400 to make a few copies, and even if it did that is also a cost of business. It would be like adding fees for the electricity to turn the lights on, or fees for the water in the restrooms, etc.


I'm a capitalist and fully support dealers making as much profit as possible. Just don't lie to me and get irate when I ask about fees and try to negotiate.
 

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our 07 Impala (factory ordered)...

But it had the windows etched with the VIN.
I remember we were not charged for it.

We ordered the car, got the pricing- all set.

When we went to pick up- and settle it all. I noticed it had the vin etched. But not in the paperwork,

I asked the salesman. He said- dont worry about it.
I got the impression they do this to the cars as they come in- to upsell. but yeah, we didnt pay for it
 

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Key is to not get emotionally attached to the car until you drive it home. Be prepared to walk and let them know there are other dealers, especially if the manager plays the bad cop role. I have had that work nicely a couple times. The other useful tool is to talk a little louder while in the dealership. Never get hostile, but sort of let other customers overhear your conversation.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I wanted to walk away, but unfortunately this was the only 2019 Avenir with the options I wanted anywhere.


Does anyone have actual knowledge regarding whether it's mandatory to pass on advertising fees to the customer and whether the dealer gets reimbursed, and whether doc fees are required by law?
 

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I doubt you will get a definitive answer to your question. Having sold Audis for a couple years, I'm fairly certain doc and advertising fees are not mandatory, at least not in my state. However, those fees can be stated or just built in to the final negotiated price. If so, you will not know. Auto pricing is a game of fun with numbers, and there are many variables involved. As mentioned above, just be prepared to walk if you don't like the deal. There are other dealers and any dealer can get any car that is within a couple hundred miles.

Since you already have your Enclave, drive it, enjoy it and forget about the deal. There is nothing you can do about it now. Keep it in mind when negotiating your next vehicle.
 
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