Clark Howard: Uber wants to help you buy a car

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Want to get a new car and a new job all in one? I’ve got a deal to share with you, but it comes with a catch.

Ridesharing service Uber has given a lot of people the opportunity to earn a living by operating as a driver in competition with traditional taxis for hire. But Uber needs more drivers around the country.

So they now have a deal where people with bad credit or no credit can get financing on cars they can use to be Uber drivers, according to ValleyWag. Uber says they can get you in a car in hours, not days or weeks.

Now, this is a bit like a company store deal, but this is also one of those instances where as much as you want to work basically determines what you’ll make.

I love people being entrepreneurs. This offer goes a long way to answering the question, “How do I make money if I don’t have money?”

Your reputation as an Uber driver — and how much money you can make as a result — depends on how clean your car is, how prompt you are, how friendly you are, etc.

But here’s the danger of this deal: If you quit — or Uber quits you — you still owe for the car.

I should also mention that Uber is a controversial service. Local governments hate it because they love making money from the taxi cartel. Taxi drivers hate Uber because they paid big bucks for a medallion and then they have to compete with other groups like Uber and Lyft on an uneven playing field.

The takeaway: Uber creates money-saving opportunities for consumers and the opportunity for you to get work. The risk, however, is you will still owe the monthly payments on their financing offer even if you decide you hate being an Uber driver.

– Clark Howard — Save More, Spend Less, Avoid Rip-offs — for the Atlanta Bargain Hunter blog

Consumer expert Clark Howard’s column appears here each Thursday in conjunction with Deal Spotter, a weekly print section in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Find more answers to your consumer questions at Clark’s website

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