With the used vehicle and pleasure vehicle market flourishing, it really is a seller’s market and lots of people are choosing to sell cars, caravans and motorhomes while the time is right. However, although selling independently may seem like a good idea, it is not without risks. Here’s how you can avoid being scammed when selling a car, camper or caravan yourself.
Trust your instincts
It may seem obvious, but the best way to avoid being caught out by a bogus buyer is to exercise a little common sense and trust your instincts. If something seems a little bit off, then act with caution. This includes making sure that you get full payment before you complete the ownership paperwork. In a time where instant bank transfer is quick and easy, there is no reason to risk accepting a cheque – so, don’t.
Go through trusted channels
When buying and selling used vehicles, it can help to use trusted channels such as online auction and trading sites. These sites require buyers to be registered, which means that a certain level of due diligence has been undertaken. It also means that, if there is a dispute further down the line, the third-party selling platform will be able to help mediate between you and the seller.
If it sounds too good to be true...
Everyone wants to get a great deal, but if you are offered wildly over the odds for a vehicle that you are selling, it may be a red flag. Of course, anything is worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it on a particular day, but if something seems too good to be true, proceed with caution.
Long distance buyers
If you are selling a fairly average vehicle that is easy to get hold of around the country, be cautious if someone is willing to come from miles away, particularly if they are willing to buy without viewing the vehicle first.
Just as someone not asking enough questions can get alarm bells ringing, be wary of someone who asks too many questions or puts you under pressure to drop the price when they “discover” potential problems. Bamboozling sellers with complex questions or complaints about fairly insignificant problems is a common way of getting them to drop their prices so that a buyer can sell on with optimal profits. Before someone comes to view your vehicle, make sure that you are aware of any issues and what they may cost to fix – and make sure you have a minimum price in mind to avoid letting it go for a lot less than it’s worth.
Ask a professional
Selling your vehicle through a dealership may cost more money in terms of fees or reduced sale price, but it does come with complete peace of mind. If you are in any doubt at all as to the price of a vehicle or how to sell, get in touch with a trusted local dealership. Looking to buy or sell in your area? Check out our directory of trusted local traders, and follow us on Facebook or Twitter.