Saturday, March 31, 2018
Private Party Scams VS Used Car Dealers
While most used-car sales conducted by private individuals are perfectly legitimate, there are used car-buying scams out there, and they are on the rise — even for so-called "local sales". This is because so much of the business has an online component. In fact, consumer complaints about car sales scams increased 25 percent last year, according to Internet Crime Complaint Center, a U.S. government agency.
Buying from a Used Car Dealer, on the other hand, comes with a certain amount of protection (even if they don't sell warranties, and are selling the car "As Is"). Besides the practicality of having the dealer handle all of the paperwork (which can really be a hassle when you’re doing it on your own), and of course, the potential of being financed through a dealer, as opposed to a private party. You can also potentially trade your car in to a dealer as a downpayment on the car you want to buy. Another important thing to think about when buying a used car is that a dealer has a reputation at stake with each sale. Think about it: If a dealer sells a flawed car without disclosing its problems, the dealer risks creating an angry buyer who could damage the dealer's reputation. A private seller doesn't have the same concerns, since he or she isn't actively engaged in the car sales business. As a result, good dealers will likely go out of their way to solve problems that arise after the sale, while many private sellers will likely avoid them. Additionally, a dealer will usually inspect and repair any issues that arise with the car before putting it up for sale to, again, protect their reputation. And dealerships offer more legal protection than buying from a private party. For example, because of the stringent laws dealerships must follow, you're less likely to run into problems such as purchasing a lemon or undisclosed salvaged vehicle. And dealers will always let you have the car inspected by your mechanic before you ever commit to buying, should you choose to do so.
You may get lucky with a private party seller, and buy a car with no issues that you can get cheaper than you would at a dealership. And for a lot of people, that is worth the risk. But it is a risk that you may end up having to pay more for, down the road.