5 tips to avoid used car frauds

01/26/2018

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Don't let scammers take your hard-earned money.

Most Nigerian families work hard for years to afford a car, so buying a car is one of the most important decisions we have ever made in our lives. However, with car scams being so rampant on the Internet, the risk of losing our hard-earned money for scammers is higher than ever. Naijauto would like to share some information that may help you better aware of and stay away from online car scammers.

1. Too good to be true

Sometimes you will meet a too good offer from sellers while searching for a car. Of course, everyone wants to save money, some people even try all means to buy the cheapest car possible but the too cheap car price is something we need to carefully consider. For example, one seller offers you a 2010 Mercedes-Benz at the price of N1,000,000 and says he needs to sell it urgently as he will move out of the country shortly, will you believe in what he says? If you are not sure the price is reasonable, search for the same cars with the same condition and production year on the internet to have an idea about the fair market price.  

a 2010 Mercedes-Benz

Sometimes you will meet a too good offer while searching for a car

2. Check the identity of the seller

After finding the suitable car for you, next step you need to do is verifying the seller in order to ensure he/she is legitimate. The best way to check this guy is by phone calls, not email because it is easy to create fake conversation. Call the seller and try to get as much information about him and his car as possible, namely his address, the car’s condition, the reason of selling the car, payment terms and et cetera. Remember to list several follow-up questions which only true car owner can answer.

A male buyer is talking with a male seller

After finding the suitable car for you, next step you need to do is verifying the seller 

>>> Related Read: 5 must-check parts when buying a used car

3. Never make advance payments

Request for the advance payment from car sellers is absolutely a big red flag. Don’t accept any reasons sellers bring to you only for an advance payment, for instance, they need your money to transport the vehicle to your place for viewing. In the case that you are extremely interested in the car, you should go directly to their location to see and check the car.

car, money and documents

Request for the advance payment from car sellers is absolutely a big red flag

4. Meet the seller

Even you and the seller set the schedule for a meeting, you still must be careful. Below are three things to bear in mind when meeting the seller.

  1. Do not bring any legal document and your money with you to the meeting. Once you can decide he/she is a genuine seller, you can bring the document back and send the payment to this guy later when you take the car.
  2. Accompany a close relative or friend to your meeting. It would keep you far safer.
  3. Have your meeting arranged in public places and in broad daylight, not in deserted parking lots.

A male buyer meets a male seller

Even you and the seller set the schedule for a meeting, you still must be careful

>>> See more: Check out the top 10 best-selling used cars in Nigeria

5. Carefully inspect the car

One of the most popular frauds now is the odometer fraud. The sellers will try to trick buyers that their car has low mileage. It is easy to roll back vehicle odometers. Detect and avoid odometer fraud by maintenance records, examining titles, inspection stickers, vehicle parts and tire tread depth.

car's odometer

One of the most popular frauds now is the odometer fraud

>>> Explore 15 things you need to consider before buying a tokunbo car

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