Selling a car is a natural step if you want to upgrade your ride or simply need money. However, with the recent influx of stories about car sellers being injured or robbed during the sale, you need to not only to be fully aware of the risks that come with selling a car, but also take extra precautions for your own safety. Find out how to protect yourself and your assets in case you’re planning to sell your car.
Vet your callers
As soon as you post an ad for your vehicle online, you’re guaranteed to get dozens of calls a day. A phone call is a great way to learn more about your prospective buyer and their intentions. Let the buyer ask questions and ask questions in return. For example, you can find out who is going to be driving the car and what the buyer is looking for in a vehicle. Fraudulent callers will get frustrated by the questions, while honest buyers will reply to all of your concerns with no hesitations.
Organize a meeting
Most of the incidents linked to car sales happen during the meeting, which is why you need to be fully prepared. The first rule is to bring someone along with you. It can be a friend or a relative; most importantly, take someone you fully trust and who has your back in case something goes wrong. The second rule is to meet in a public place. It means that if a seller suggests meeting in an empty space behind a store lot or in a distant garage, nothing good will come out of this meeting. Instead you should propose a meeting in a crowded area, like a parking lot of a busy mall. If you’re surrounded by people, you are at less risk of becoming a victim.
During a test-drive
Any car selling process will eventually lead to a test-drive. Before the test-drive, make sure to see the buyer’s driver license and, if possible, take a photo of the license with your phone. Arrange a meeting in a public area and don’t forget to either take someone with you or notify your family that you’re meeting with the buyer. Take all of your valuable belongings from the car. Don’t let the buyer drive alone and stay in the passenger seat: that way you will not only prevent the vehicle from being stolen, but will be able to take control of the situation in case there is something wrong with the car. Finally, try to make the test-drive short – there is no need to drive the car around for hours to decide if you want to buy it or not.
Negotiation and sale
In case the prospective buyer loved the car and is ready to make an offer, there are a few more rules to follow. First, if the buyer says you need to drive them to another location to get the money or paperwork, refuse the offer and suggest meeting in a couple of hours, when the buyer is ready for the sale. If you’ve invited the buyer to your home for a viewing and a test-drive, try not to let them inside – better sign the paperwork near the house. Don’t hand out any legal documents before you’ve received the money in full. Follow these simple rules and eliminate any risks that come with selling a car online.