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Four Tips For Safely Buying a Car Online

Subscribe September 24, 2015
Buying a new car | Fraud and scam prevention | Industry Information

With over 15 million cars sold each year on sites such as eBay Motors and Cars Direct, buying a car online has never been more common. With these online purchases, many of them are interstate transactions. For example, a recent USA Today article reported that nearly three quarters of all car purchases on eBay were interstate.

Despite how common these transactions may be, online vehicle scams are just as common. Many people are taking to sites such as eBay to post fake car listings in order to scam online auto shoppers out of their money.

In order to avoid these fraudulent financial scams, here are four tips for safely buying a car:

  1. Make Sure the Seller is Credible. Make sure you know that the seller is verified and credible. You can do so by checking him/her on the Better Business Bureau's website. Additionally, check to see if the seller has previous reviews for past sales. If the seller is in a hurry to get rid of the car, consider this a red flag. Buying an automobile is a lengthy process, and the seller should know that best. Almost 95% of consumers worldwide research cars online before purchasing them, and you should do the same.
  2. The More Information, the Better. Does the car's listing have photographs, updated specs, and the car's history? If not, this may be a red flag. As a potential buyer, you are entitled to as much information about the car as possible. The more details you are able to receive, the more reliable the purchase is likely to be.
  3. Pay Securely. When purchasing a car online, always pay through a secure website. NEVER wire transfer a deposit or payment. If they ask for a wire transfer, it is usually a red flag and indicative of a scam.
  4. Use Dependable Auto Transport. Particularly for interstate online automobile transaction, finding a reliable auto transport company is essential to ensuring that your new car arrives at your home safe, and in the condition in which you purchased it.


    No issues to report, service was dependable and reliable. Our car was available before the scheduled date! Very much appreciated!
    T. Rosenthal


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