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Colorado Springs resident stuck with $1,700 bill after apartment complex tows car

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Despite his vehicle being listed on the apartment lease, a Colorado Springs man had his car towed out of his complex's parking lot while he was out of state.

Rodney Ayers says his Chevy Equinox was towed from the Canyon Ranch Apartments after being parked at the complex for just four days.

This past March, Ayers parked his car in one of the complex's open spots. Then, his son came and drove him to Denver International Airport for a flight to Arizona. Ayers was visiting his wife, who's working out of state for now.

But just four days after he left, his car was towed. He had no idea, until he returned two months later, to find no car and eventually a big bill for the tow.

"Why would you tow it when our car was on the lease?" Ayers questions.

Ayers' 2014 Chevy Equinox is listed on his lease, but he says the towing company got the go ahead from his apartment complex to tow it.

"They say 'well your car didn't move.' Well of course my car wouldn't move, because I'm out of town," he says.

By the time Ayers returned to Colorado Springs, his tow bill had been sent to collections.

He had to pay more than $1,700 dollars to get his vehicle back, or it was going to auction. He says his credit score took a 100 point hit.

"It caused me not only to have a ding on my credit but I was actually in line to get a couple of business deals."

The lease says Ayers can have one car in one of the assigned carports, and one other on the property-- where the car was towed from.

Ayers claims he was told the car was later towed because it was, 'obviously inoperable.'

Pictures from when the car was picked up from the creditor seem to show otherwise.

"That's their words to me," Ayers adds. "The car didn't move so that it makes it inoperable."

Ayers has lived at Canyon Ranch for three years and renewed his lease before the towing dispute happened. He'd like to take his case to small claims court, but fears it may cost him more to do so in the long run.

KRDO reached out to American Capital Realty, the company that owns Canyon Ranch.

KRDO asked the company why Ayers should have to pay for the tow when his car is clearly listed on the lease.

"I can't discuss anything related to my residents," Laura Neighbor, with American Capital Realty said.

Neighbor claimed that this version of events wasn't the whole story, but declined to explain why. Neighbor says the company, "served [Ayers] the best we could."

"Look, you're going to do whatever you're going to do," she said of KRDO. "You're more than welcome to do what you need to do."

That answer though is not what Ayers wanted to hear.

"I'm extremely upset because it's like she's very unprofessional," Ayers said. "We're asking to just make things right.”

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Spencer Soicher

Spencer is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about him here.

Comments

13 Comments

  1. “When he returned home two months later, he found that his credit company was now in possession of the vehicle, his credit score lowered by nearly 100 points, and he was stuck with a bill for $1,740.”
    .
    If those details are accurate, he can sue the complex management for both the bill and for damages related to his lowered credit score. If there is more to it not disclosed here, then it could change the picture. Makes me wonder if it was his credit company who had the car towed for missed payments.

    1. I am Rodney’s wife. We have never been late nor missed a payment to our finance company. I provided the apartment complex with that information in the form of a letter from our finance company showing our balance was $0 and the account was current when it was towed.

  2. Then he needs to take them to court or move out and cut his losses.

    1. Or both take them to court and then move out before they get a chance to retaliate. Of course he may have trouble terminating his lease.

  3. Wait a min. It says the apartment company had it towed and then it also states, “Pictures from when the car was picked up from the creditor seem to show otherwise.”
    -Picked up by the creditor. So it sounds like a repo!

    1. the “creditor” might be the towing company/impound lot.
      It is slightly confusing.

    2. It wasn’t a repo…. We never missed or were late on a payment. The towing company deemed the vehicle as abandoned do the finance company picked the vehicle up from the towing company

  4. I am Rodney’s wife. For any of you questioning- we didn’t default on the loan. Because the vehicle was in impound for more than ten days the towing company contacted the finance company and stated the vehicle was abandoned. So they picked up the vehicle. We have never missed or been late on any payment which we have in writing from the finance company.

    1. I am really sorry for what happened to you folks.
      A lawyer might be interested IF there can be a bigger return on a case.
      I would get with your finance company to at least see if you can restore your credit rating to previous levels.

      1. Thank you… KRDO
        After the story aired they refunded our money.
        Now we are trying to get our credit rating
        Restored. My husband’s rating
        Was 795 before all this happened.

    2. I live in the canyon ranch apartments.. my friends car has been towed multiple times for invalid reasons.. all we ever here from the front office is “we don’t have any control over it, obviously he broke a rule” which he never did. I always clarified on parking just so things like this wouldn’t happen. They have gotten 100s from us… whenever I would tell them what I was told, and what the lease says, I always get very short answers without it really being an answer.

    3. Thank you for the clarification. The details are not always clear in KRDO stories.
      .
      I hope you manage to find a lawyer to take your case. It would seem you have every right to both full reimbursement and damages for the credit score damage.

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