Cars Used Ontario – BUYER BEWARE – Curbsiders

An estimated 25% of automotive classifieds are from curbsiders.

In past posts we have covered tips and things you can check and do to ensure the used car you are looking at buying is sound and that you are getting a good deal. The other important aspect you need to be aware of is “WHO” are you buying that used car from. If you are looking to the free online classified sites, like Kijiji or Craigslist for a good deal, BEWARE of curbsiders.

So exactly what is a curbsider and why do you need to pay attention?

Read a little further, because the next 10-20 seconds could save you a lot of hurt.

Firstly, a curbsider is a type of dealer, typically who is unlicensed, who will pose as a private seller with a car to sell. They are in the business of selling stolen, rebuilt or odometer-tampered vehicles to unsuspecting people. These fraudsters love sites like Kijiji or Craigslist because it gives them the opportunity to run their “business” under the radar and provides them with a huge pool of unsuspecting people.

Now you may be thinking “ok if they are dealers then I have consumer protection.” Unfortunately, consumer protection applies to vehicle sales between an Ontario-registered dealer and a consumer, private sales do not apply.

How do you protect yourself?

Here are a few tips to that should certainly cause the radar to go up.

1. Look out for the “stories” – remember the Golden Rule “If it is too good to be true, then it probably is.”

2. Ask if the vehicle is certified and emmissions tested and request to see all the paperwork.

3. Ask for a land-line or work number in order to verify that the seller is as he or she says they are.

4. Do NOT buy the car if the seller’s name doesn’t appear on the current vehicle ownership registration.

5.  Have the seller provide you with an official Used Vehicle Information Package (UVIP), which will tell you the history of the      car and who has owned it.

6. See and test drive the vehicle before you make any sort of payment agreement or arrangements.

7. Meet the sellers at their home or work, not at malls, parking lots or some other odd place.

8. Make arrangements to have the vehicle checked/inspected by your mechanic.

Curbsiders are everywhere and they are always praying on the unsuspected. There are some estimates that 25% of the autmotive classified ads are placed by those who are curbsiders looking to score. Bottom-line, trust your gut feelingm if it doesn’t seem right, then walk away.

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