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We all want to get the best deal we can when it comes to buying or selling a car, and although most people are honest sellers, there are a few out there who are not. Knowing how to spot a bad egg is very important as it could save you vital cash and more importantly prevent you from getting into trouble with the law or even having a serious accident.
The Scambusters Guide to Safe Car Buying is an intiative produced by the Trusted Dealers to help buyers become educated on how to spot a scam before they fall privy to it, and we have plenty of excellent advice from industry experts on which scams to look out for and how to avoid them.
Last month focussed on Clocking, and this month we’re looking at two more areas where buyers can get potentially scammed known as Unpaid Finance and Car Matching scams.
This occurs when someone tries to sell you a car that still has an unsettled outstanding finance agreement which was taken out with the vehicle when they bought it. This means that although you might give a seller some money for their car, the title or ownership still resides with the finance company who could repossess the vehicle from you. Thankfully at Trusted Dealers every vehicle is thoroughly checked for outstanding finance before it enters the showroom, but if you are purchasing from a private or independent dealer, it is well worth asking to see the necessary paperwork to ensure that you do not fall victim to this type of scam.
Car matching occurs when photos and details of real cars are posted on used car classified websites with false owner details. These cars are usually priced extremely low to encourage car buyers to get in contact with the seller. Then, once the contact has been made, the buyer is encouraged to transfer their money into an apparently legitimate ‘escrow’ account. However, when they come to take delivery of the car, the contact and their money vanishes. This can be even more dangerous when the cars have been involved in a serious accident and have therefore been written off by an insurance company – buyers have been known to repair these cars then sell them on to unwitting buyers.