Here’s the truth: As a consumer investigator, I get a lot of calls and emails from people seeking help. The good news is I have a remarkable team that helps me listen to the calls and determine whom we can help. I heard Lynn’s message, but senior producer Marnie Zambri is the person who truly listened.
“Dale,” Marnie started, “did you hear the call from the grandmother with the car problem?”
“Yes,” I said.
“Well,” Marnie continued, “I called her back, and what she didn’t tell us on the phone message is that she’s handicapped, can’t walk and the specially equipped van is her only method of transportation, and more importantly, her only way of getting her grandchildren to doctor appointments and school. What’s more, she’s been hiding it at a friend’s house for weeks, and she’s worn out her welcome.”
TrustDale.com is about helping consumers avoid scams, and finding honest companies that deliver exceptional price, quality and customer service. However, this column, along with TrustDale TV and TrustDale Radio, is about solving consumer problems, and Lynn had a big one.
I called the car dealer to get the facts. Sure enough, Lynn had made regular payments like clockwork, but in the past couple of months, she missed her payments — first by a couple of days, and then a few more days. The car dealer told me Lynn was no longer a good loan risk, and they were exercising their right to repossess her van.
Marnie asked, “Is there anything we can do for Lynn? Perhaps ‘guilt’ the car dealer in to backing off?”
“Yes,” I told Marnie, “but Lynn incurred the debt, promised to pay, and regardless of the circumstances, the car dealer has a right to expect payment.”
I told Marnie I had another idea. I told her I was going to call Joe Ard.
Joe is a retired Army lieutenant colonel. He is also the founder and president of Vestlet Realty, a company that specializes in finding investors the very best deals among repossessed HUD homes and bank-owned properties. Put simply, Joe helps investors find great investment properties, and then his property management arm goes out and finds the best-qualified renters to lease the homes. He just celebrated his firm’s 500th real estate closing during the worst market in modern history. (You can learn more about Vestlet under the “financial” category at TrustDale.com).
Joe was on our show a few months ago, saw what we do in terms of helping people, and called me up a few days later. He said to me, “Whenever you come across a deserving case, let me know. I don’t want any credit, but the Lord has blessed me in life, and I want to help when I can.” I remembered that conversation and called Joe.
“Don’t say another word,” Joe responded. “I know that dealer, and I’ll take care of it.”
Joe drove to the dealership, wrote a check for $3,000 and delivered the title of the specially equipped van to Lynn Jackson. Lynn has the van free and clear, and a new best friend named Joe Ard.
God bless you, Joe. You and Vestlet Realty made a real difference. Just ask Lynn Jackson.