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Return your car, but you'll still owe

q_v2.gifI bought a new car two days ago. It has only been driven from the dealership to my home, 13 miles. I found out my job is being out-sourced. I will not be able to afford the the car. Can I return it?

-- Annie

a_v2.gifChances are you're going to take a financial hit. As soon as a new car changes hands and your name is on the title, the dealer can't sell it again as a "new" car. The dealer can only sell it as a used car, meaning it's worth as much as 40 percent less, according to Automotive Lease Guide.

There is insurance for just the situation you describe -- if you lose your income. Hyundai recently made it standard on all new cars and trucks, but some dealers for other brands also offer it independently. One vendor that offers such insurance is Walkaway USA in Irving, Texas.

If you don't have "walkaway" insurance, you may have to throw yourself on the mercy of the dealer. That might not be as bad as it sounds, if you're a loyal, repeat customer, and you have a particularly sought-after car that the dealer can resell at a good price. And if it has only 20 to 30 miles, the dealer might sell it as "dealer demo."

Still, you're likely to owe a portion of the car loan. Beyond that, your options aren't pretty. You can keep it and hope you'll get a job. You could try selling it yourself and hope to get enough to pay off your loan. Or you could simply not pay it and let the lender repossess it.

Let's hope another job comes your way, and not just so you can keep the car.

 

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