dealer or a private owner?

i will have $10,000 or even more but people say is better to buy from a private owner! but I always bought from a dealer in the past and they never gave us any problem

but Im worried on buying from a private owner cause they will just tell you a lie and their are major wrong things about the car as well as the dealer but i had no problem with the dealer

i dont trust craiglist

5 Answers

  • 12 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    You pay more at a dealer, but assuming the deanship has integrity, you are more likely to work things out is something goes wrong.  When you buy form an individual, you get what you get. 

    I recently sold a car privately, for the first time.  The specific model is very unreliable and prone to problems. The guy knew that.  I told him he could take it for a week, take it to a mechanic or whatever, as I wanted him to be completely aware of any issues.  That was a few months ago and it worked out perfectly well.  

    And if the private seller is someone you know well and trust, then it should be ok.  I'm not sure I'd buy a car off Craigslist unless the seller allowed me to take it to the mechanic of my choice. 

    I only buy used cars (my wife gets the news ones), as I have a long commute and pile the miles on.  My current car was a bit over 2 years old when I got it.  It sold for about 32K, I got it for 19.5K with 42K miles on it.  It's great. 

  • Anonymous
    12 months ago

    Used car dealers aren't any more trustworthy than a private seller, especially if all they sell is used cars. A logical and intelligent buyer will arrange to take the vehicle to a trustworthy shop for a full evaluation before buying it, no matter who they buy from.

  • Scott
    Lv 7
    12 months ago

    A dealer can lie to you the same as a private seller. The difference is a dealer has to factor in overhead costs into the price, while a private seller does not.

  • 12 months ago

    Buying from an individual seller is no less risky than buying form a dealer. And the notion that you always get a better price from an individual is nonsense. Dealers can be just as motivated to sell as an individual. Too many buyers assume that an individual's asking price is an educated and fair price, but the seller may not have a true idea of what his car is actually worth. In most cases he bases his price on what he sees as dealer prices on the same or similar cars, and chooses the higher of those prices. Unless he is desperate to sell, he'll hold out for those prices.

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  • 12 months ago

    I'm a car dealer, and to be honest, while there are some advantages from buying from a dealer, there are also some downsides.  So here are some differences between buying from a dealer vs. private party.

    The upsides are:

    If you buy from a dealer, the dealer will likely have a selection of vehicles that you can shop from.  So if you don't like one car, just walk a little further and you may find another.  If you buy private party, and you don't like that car, you can't just walk over to the next car because the private party likely only has one car up for sale.

    (if you buy from a dealer in your state) is that there is no need for you to visit the DMV as the dealer will handle all of the paperwork for you.  The dealer will charge you for the tax, title, license, registration, etc... and you will get your license plate and registration in the mail.  You will still have to visit the DMV and handle all this yourself if you buy from a dealer in another state.

    Also, dealers are collectable if sued, while many private parties are not.  Car dealers have a bond, that you can cash in on if you end up having to sue them.  If the dealer does something wrong, and you sue them and win, you can collect on the bond.  On the other hand, private party's are often uncollectable.  If you sue someone, and get a judgement against them, that judgement is often no more valuable than a sheet of toilet paper if you can't collect.

    Most dealers will disclaim the Implied Warranty of Merchantability.  This is the warranty that guarantees that the car will provide safe and reliable transportation.  According to the Uniform Commercial Code, Article 2, Section 316, by selling a used car with plain language that a person of average intellect can understand as being sold without a warranty.  Language includes words such as "AS-IS" or "With all Faults".  That's one of the reasons why at a used car lot you will see that the cars will often have an FTC Used Car Buyer's Guide in the window that has a check mark next to the words "AS-IS".  And while car dealers can disclaim the Implied Warranty of Merchantability (As well as the Implied Warranty of Fitness for a Particular Purpose), dealers CANNOT disclaim Express Warranties.

    Express Warranties are guarantees that are objectively measureable.  Such as, the year of the vehicle, the VIN number, the make and model, or the odometer.  If a dealer advertises "Car runs great", you cannot sue if the car doesn't run great (or at all), because "runs great" isn't measurable.  But if the dealer advertises a car as having 50k miles, and then CarFax states that last year the car had 150k miles on it, you can sue the dealer for the odometer discrepency because you can measure miles, and the number thereof.  And like I said before, dealers have a bond that is collectable.  Private parties, do not.

    Also, if there is evidence of material fact that was not revealed at the time of purchase, the dealer can be sued, and it doesn't matter if the dealer knew or not.  This includes things such as, was the car set on fire, flooded, or damaged to the point where it was issued a salvage title.  Some of this MUST be revealed regardless of the customer asking, such as if the vehicle has a salvage title, or was flooded.  But some things do not need to be revealed unless the customer asks, such as, has the car ever had an engine fire, or has it been in an accident.  If the customer asks, the dealer must answer.  The dealer cannot say "no" unless he knows for certain that the car has never been in an accident.  The dealer can say, "I don't know the history of the vehicle".  If the dealer is sued for this, the customer has the burden of proof to show that he/she did ask the dealer, "Was this car in an accident?"  The lawsuit would be under the state's "Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act", just about every state has such a law.  If the dealer claims that he didn't know, the most that the dealer can be sued for is mis-representation.  In which case, all that happens is that the dealer has to un-wind the deal (like the sale never happened).  If it can be proven that the dealer did know (this is a very tall bar), then the dealer can be sued for fraud, which in most states that equal trebel damages (triple the damages.  If the car was $10k, then the customer gets the $10k refund + $30k in additional damages).  With a private party, none of this would matter as most private parties are un-collectable.

    Note that this does not allow suing the dealer for mechanical faults.  Mechanical faults are covered by the Implied Warranty of Merchantability, and if the car is sold 'AS-IS', then the dealer cannot be sued because the transmission took a dump, or if the engine blows up.

    Then there are downsides to buying from a car dealer.  Downsides include, that vehicles from a car dealer tend to be more expensive than a comparable vehicle from a private party.  When a dealer sells a car, that car must be sold in a manner that covers the dealers cost of aquiring the vehicle, covers overhead and other business costs, plus nets the dealer a profit.  Private parties do not have business costs, overhead, or trying to net a profit.

    Also, dealers will often charge a "dealer fee" or some other comparable fee that is not an offical state fee, but profit for the dealer.  Dealers are often permitted to charge this as the dealer is acting on the behalf of the state to collect taxes, title and register the vehicle, which is why you do not have to pay a visit to the DMV.  You could try to negotiate with the dealer to reduce or eliminate this fee.  Some dealers will, but a lot won't.  I won't because I treat everybody the same, and I charge everybody the same.  Otherwise I risk being sued for discrimination.

    Vehicles being sold on "craigslist" or any other medium are not necessarily of poor quality or dangerous.  Craigslist is just a means of advertising.  It's the person who is selling the car to be leery of.  Make sure that the transaction takes place in a safe place, and check your documents.  Ask to see the title.  Make sure that the name on the title matches the name on the ID of the person selling it to you.  If it does not match, the person is likely a curbstoner.  Often curbstone deals go without issue, but I have seen one instance when someone bought a car, had trouble titling the car and needed to go back to the previous owner for help.  But the person who sold the car was not the owner, it was just "some dude", and after tracking down the owner, he found out that the owner (the only person who could help) was dead, and that the car had actually been sold at an estate auction sale, but the curbstoner never titled it in his name ( to avoid title fees ).

    When making a purchase, get the vehicle's VIN, and run it through the NICB (National Insurance Crime Bureau) VinCheck service.  It is free, you can run up to 5 VINs per day.  If the car is not totaled, or stolen, then you can get a more comprehensive history at CarFax or some other NMVTIS service, such as AutoCheck.  If that's good, take it to a mechanic to do a pre-purchase inspection.  If you do not know a good mechanic to check it out, call around.  Lots of mechanics like to do Pre-Purchase Inspections because the mechanic is getting paid to just look for problems, and doesn't even have to fix anything.  Just make sure that the Pre-Purchase Inspection is done before the sale, not after.  I've seen to many people who do an inspection after the sale, which is putting the cart before the horse.

    I hope this helps!

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