Hi, at the end of March my elderly parents (85 & 80) visited a caravan show. They saw a mini camper van for sale and my father was quite interested. He had a vision of being able to use it to take my mother, who has terminal cancer for days out. The van was on sale for £23,999. My parents looked around the rest of the show and on their way back as they were approaching the stand were they saw the above mentioned van the salesman had sign with a reduced price of £19,995. In parents words "he told us he was reducing it for the show" My father was attracted by this and signed up to purchase the vehicle and paid a deposit. They did not really have a proper look around the vehicle and salesman didn't offer to show them any of the features or how things worked. The van was on display with the beds made up so my father didn't even have an opportunity to sit in the vehicle. Both my parents need the aid of a stick to walk. Originally my father agreed to part ex his caravan but later decided to withdraw this as he felt he could get a better price.
As the vehicle was un-registered the company selling insisted that the balance was paid before it could be registered. My father paid the balance and waited to hear from them. Communication from the company has been poor from the outset.
Eventually they confirmed a date for the delivery of Friday 8th May. On the day of the delivery my father had a telephone message to say that they could not deliver because they had not received all the paperwork back from the DVLA. My father contacted the seller and left a message to say that if they planned to deliver the following week he would not be available Tue - Thurs as he had to take my mother to hospital each day. By the following Thurs (14th) he had not heard anything so with his permission I contacted the salesman to find out what was happening. Everything was now in place so a date of 21st May was agreed for delivery.
The van was delivered and immediately on inspection my parents & sister noticed a number of defects, scratches, rust etc. On the sales document the vehicle was ticked as being new. Other things transpired that they were not aware of such as the fact that the engine was under the drivers seat. The procedure for elevating the roof very complicated. During discussion with the salesman it was claimed that the vehicle was sold as a demonstration model, something that my father claims not to have been made aware of at the time of sale. On the basis of the defects found my father rejected the van and it was taken back to their premises.
After taking advice from Citizens Advise we wrote to them claiming that under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 the vehicle was not as described and not of acceptable quality and demanded a refund of the full amount paid. My father received a very angry response this week claiming that the vehicle was clearly marked as a demonstration model. It suggested that we had accused them of high pressure selling tactics - this has never been claimed in any communication with them. It also claimed that the defects found were minor and that the vehicle is of acceptable quality & fit for purpose. As a gesture of goodwill they have rectified the faults and they are asking him to make arrangements to collect the vehicle.
Advise from CAB is that we write back and say we are not satisfied with their reply but I don't know were this will get us. Could we have any claim to cancel the contract under the "off premises contract" regulations?
Sorry this is a bit long winded but any help will be most appreciated as this is causing the whole family a lot of stress with both my parents being ill with cancer. thanks