How to Avoid Scams When Buying Cars on Craigslist?

Thus, you made up your mind that you need to purchase a used vehicle and want to turn to Craigslist. However, you should be aware that buying cars on Craigslist isn’t safe. Sadly, a lot of consumers fall victims of scammers. Well, this isn’t surprising, as the Craigslist serves as a perfect tool for attracting car buyers. Don’t worry about it. The key to preventing Craigslist scams is taking certain precautions and paying attention to details. Here are some useful tips that can guide you through this complicated process and help you get the best deal.

It is essential to have everything in writing

When purchasing cars on Craigslist, you should have everything in writing. In fact, it is a wise decision. You should also print out the Craigslist advertisement prior to contacting the seller. Take your time and explore it in detail. Take a close look at the listings that refer to promises concerning either new or recently repaired parts. Having the evidence of the seller’s promises is a vital step of purchasing cars on Craigslist that are safe. Don’t hesitate to keep all the correspondence in the written form. This includes both emails and text messages.

Don’t forget to ask all the questions that you have prepared

Feel free to ask as many questions as you have in mind. Among such questions are: did the used vehicle face repairs? Exactly where were the repairs performed? Please provide me with VIN of the vehicle?  You can use the vehicle’s VIN number to conduct an online check. It is worth to mention certain effective sources, like Carfax and Autocheck. In this way, you can find out important facts about the vehicle. For example, you can discover that the vehicle in question experienced floods or accidents. Of course, scammers fail to include such details in the advertisements. That’s why, consumers who prefer buying cars on Craigslist, may fall victims of scams.

You should always test drive the vehicle

Did you find a perfect deal on Craigslist? You had better test drive the vehicle prior to buying it. It is a red flag if the dealer doesn’t give you the opportunity of test driving the vehicle. This means that probably something is wrong with the vehicle. So, they want to conceal this fact to increase their financial means. While test driving you should pay attention to strange noises that may come from the engine. Moreover, it gives you a clear idea of the vehicle’s condition.

Ask the mechanic to inspect the vehicle

If you found the vehicle on Craigslist, you should turn to a reliable mechanic. A skilled professional may give you a piece of valuable information about the car in question. Did the mechanic find issues with the vehicle? At this point, you should ask him/her to include all the findings in the inspection report. It goes without saying that it plays an important role in the negotiation process. Sometimes dealers simply aim to get rid of the car. That’s why; they will agree to reduce the vehicle’s price.

Find out sufficient information concerning the vehicle’s market value

Consumers, who want to purchase cars on Craigslist, should know the vehicle’s market value. To have an access to this information, you can use certain sources. The Kelley Blue Book, as well as Edmunds, can help you achieve this goal. Also, consider checking similar cars on Craigslist, which were listed previously.

In conclusion, we hope that you will find these tips useful to avoid scams while purchasing cars on Craigslist. In this way, you have better chances of getting the best deal and driving your dream vehicle.