In addition to the car details and, usually, a selection of photos, the vehicle description will contain the seller’s contact data. If the seller is a dealer, have a closer look on the dealer’s homepage, if available, and look for indications of the seller’s reliability.
Call the seller at the number given and ask for an appointment.
Make sure and ask for confirmation that the specific car is still for sale – especially if its location is a longer drive away.
You can always have rotten sheep among all the reliable and serious sellers. How can you spot them?
The following signs indicate that an online car seller is reputable:
For all sellers:
- No deposit is required – the rule is: money for car
- A landline or at least mobile phone number is available where you can actually reach the seller
- Contact between buyer and seller is not limited to e-mail only
- A potential buyer can inspect and test drive the vehicle before buying it
For dealers especially:
If a dealer has a homepage, it should list the mail address, registered office, the company’s legal form, its owner(s) and authorised representatives.
Make sure that the contact data are those of the vehicle dealer. Phishing can result in buyers believing to communicate with a dealer, while they are actually talking or mailing to a phisher.