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Finance comment: By Chris Sutton, Black Horse managing director

As you are probably aware, the selling of PPI is not the only aspect of dealer trading that is under the scrutiny of regulators.

The Office of Fair Trading and Trading Standards are currently looking at motor finance advertising to ensure it is compliant with Consumer Credit Act regulations.

It’s almost four years since the new advertising regulations came into force.

The OFT has obviously decided the honeymoon period is over and appears determined to ensure the regulations are adhered to.

It is believed that at least one volume sales manufacturer has been contacted regarding alleged discrepancies and has been invited to offer solutions to remedy apparent advertising misdemeanours. Rumours persist of others.

The importance of finance advertising cannot be under-estimated, with some observers suggesting that 72% of all the main manufacturers have a finance offer on one or more new vehicles.

With the perception that the availability of finance is reducing and the cost of living increasing, the offer of attractive finance terms on a new or used car can be highly attractive to customers, especially those working to a tight budget.

Interest-free, low-rate APR or a PCP deal to reduce monthly payments all have appeal to different customer segments.

It’s also a great way to drive showroom traffic.

In light of the Northern Rock debacle, the availability of finance and financial well-being of the provider of the finance is becoming as important as the cost of the finance itself.

The Black Horse name and logo is highly recognisable and our showroom materials can provide your customers with reassurance that they are borrowing from a lender they know and trust.

Black Horse can also provide dealers with a free guide to CCA advertising requirements.

This may help to ensure your advert is CCA compliant and could help you avoid any unnecessary challenges from the OFT or Trading Standards.

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