Don’t lose a bunch of money to these dirtbags!
If you’re a car enthusiast and are on the hunt for a rare, specific ride, it can be pretty much impossible to find it locally. That drives many of us to look for vehicles out of state, maybe even across the country, and sometimes internationally. The only problem is it’s easier to get scammed when you’re dealing over such distances, as clearly demonstrated by a recent report out of Indianapolis.
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An unnamed man was scammed out of a cool $82,000 after he thought he found his dream car through a dealer in California. The problem was the dealership didn’t exist and the seller had no intention of sending the vehicle. Since the man wired the money to what he thought was a reputable dealership, he lost it all.
Buying from a dealership can offer some protections since they’re regulated and have a reputation to defend, but this man didn’t verify the existence of the dealer. Always research a dealership, even if you’re going to buy a vehicle in person. The internet makes doing that so easy, taking away any excuses you might have.
In the local report, a representative from the BBB provided some tips to avoid getting taken by car sales scams. Probably the best one is to never wire funds to the seller. Instead, send a check or use your credit card to make the purchase. If there’s a problem, like you don’t actually get the car, you can cancel a check or credit card transaction. With wired funds there isn’t such an option.
The BBB also said to ask specific questions about the car. You should always do that, even if you’re buying a hooptie. If the seller glosses over the details or tries changing the subject, you’re probably dealing with a scammer. Same goes for asking exactly where the vehicle is located. After all, you’ll have to arrange transport if it’s far away.
Apparently, some people are being told by scammers Craigslist, Facebook, eBay, etc. will guarantee every transaction on their site. That’s just not true, so don’t fall for that.
Thanks to inflated prices, these schemes are everywhere at the moment, so you have to be a little suspicious of everyone and watch your back.
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