Needed: Advice on Safe Car Selling in a big city

Needed: Advice on Safe Car Selling in a big city

This is a discussion on Needed: Advice on Safe Car Selling in a big city within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; We’re trying to decide to take a loss on a car at about $2,000 to sell it safer. Houston is giant, lots of crime and ...

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Thread: Needed: Advice on Safe Car Selling in a big city

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Sister's Avatar
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    Needed: Advice on Safe Car Selling in a big city

    We’re trying to decide to take a loss on a car at about $2,000 to sell it safer. Houston is giant, lots of crime and we don’t want to deal with any of that. Would it be smarter to just sell it at a loss just to be safe and keep the car from being stolen and driven across the border (or where ever)?

    Car-Max online was giving us the best price, this is for a straight drive mini so the straight drive would knock some of the prospective byers out.

    We are not sure what to do, advertise it on Craig’s list and make more but have a high risk or sell it to car-max?

    Any ideas, thoughts?


    [no on a trade in, we have one car to many now]
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    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    I hate the process of buying and selling stuff anyway. Add the fact that person-to-person sales like from Craig's List cause you to interact with strangers who could be confidence tricksters or outright criminals. Even selling to a friend or relative is problematic. What if something goes wrong with the car? Then there is a strain on the relationship. What is your safety and comfort level worth?

    I prefer to go to a named brand place that has a formal process for handling the sale. That is why I buy and sell guns at my LGS. I might lose a few bucks, but it is orderly and proper and my piece of mind is worth something. Just MHO.
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    When I bought my new car I sold my old car on eBay. I got about 50% more than the trade in value offered by the dealer. It is simpler and safer if you keep the transaction in your state.
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    Senior Member Array RonM0710's Avatar
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    If you want to sell to an individual, you could always meet them at a local police station. That is recommended for a Craig’s list sale.
    "Lets Be Careful Out There!"

    Ron

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    Quote Originally Posted by RonM0710 View Post
    If you want to sell to an individual, you could always meet them at a local police station. That is recommended for a Craig’s list sale.
    Now THAT sounds like a good idea! Thank you, will pass that along to the better half 👍🏻

    @1942bull , yes we thought of that and yes we would make more - it’s just that there are over two and a half MILLION people here, not like they would be easy to find if they took it. This is the problem, and why I put this out there. Sometimes it’s better to take a loss in the long run. They murder folks here over fireworks and shoes no less.

    @OldChap ~ friend, sure would love to hear from you on this one too! We mentioned that you would prolly know.
    Trust God.

    What would happen if you put the same amount of trust in God that you do in the brakes on what your driving on the highways?

    Think about it.

  6. #6
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    You can advertise it first, and if someone calls, get their name and a call back number, then call them back. (If you are really worried just search the web for them first).

    Set the meeting place at the DMV or a bank parking lot, or a mechanics place if they insists on a mechanical inspection. (A very public place).

    Bring a friend(s) and have them discreetly take a photo or two when the possible buyer arrives.

    They will probably want to drive it and that's fine. (You would want to try it an ddrive it first too.) I'd allow them to take it or go with them once you meet them and get a feeling about them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sister View Post
    Now THAT sounds like a good idea! Thank you, will pass that along to the better half 👍🏻

    @1942bull , yes we thought of that and yes we would make more - it’s just that there are over two and a half MILLION people here, not like they would be easy to find if they took it. This is the problem, and why I put this out there. Sometimes it’s better to take a loss in the long run. They murder folks here over fireworks and shoes no less.

    @OldChap ~ friend, sure would love to hear from you on this one too! We mentioned that you would prolly know.
    @Sister ,

    It does not have to be dangerous. I met the buyer at a local business that handles such transfer titles. AAA does it. H had a certified check for the full amount, and he paid the transfer fees. the office was in a strip mall, which was unappealing but I had my SD0VE under my coat and the car title and keys in my pocket.

    As for it being better to take a loss in the long run, it is a bad idea idea to think that way. In my book about negotiating I pointed out that rationalizing about taking a loss is like committing suicide one pin ***** of a vein at a time. Never, ever take an intentional loss. You want to give wealth away, then donate the car for a tax deduction.
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    Meet at your local police precinct lot and sell it yourself. There are a lot of police stations that have "safe trade zones" specifically for that purpose as well as meeting place for child custody exchange. Usually they are under 24 hr videotaped surveillance. Just my .02 worth!
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    I'm in the car business... every dealer I know, including us, is looking for used inventory all day every day. I'd roll it by a few dealers and see what they'll bid for it, typically a dealership of the same brand will pay a bit more. Car Max is also a good choice. You can certainly get a little more for it selling to an individual but then you have the hassles that can come with that... what if something breaks and so on...

    If by mini you a mini cooper, those cars are pretty unique and have a following all their own. That will typically make them a little better prospect for a private sale. If you go that route meet some place very public and make sure you get paid in certified funds.
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    Senior Member Array CommonCents's Avatar
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    There is more personal safety danger for a buyer showing up with cash for "deals" on items more so than danger for sellers, i guess unless they want to flat out steal your goods, but if i were a criminal i'd want to be the seller and have people show up with cash :) Yep, meet at police station for transactions, many of them encourage it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonM0710 View Post
    If you want to sell to an individual, you could always meet them at a local police station. That is recommended for a Craig’s list sale.
    Many PDs/SOs recommend that and offer the use of their parking lots. Try to find out when shift change is so there will be more LE traffic in the area. Anyone who does not want to meet there isn't someone you want to deal with anyhow.
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    Just a few thoughts.

    Certified checks USED to be safe and secure. No more. There are slick forgers who have copied certified bank checks, and the banks are reluctant to change the design because it might cost them a few dollars.

    Cash USED to be a safe medium, but nowadays, I would not ever make a face to face for any large sum of cash unless I had a couple folks doing overwatch with long guns.

    Some folks have recommended using a bank as the place of sale. To me, that would all depend on IF the bank personnel are capable of recognizing a fake certified check or other such gimmick.

    @OldVet is right about meeting at a PD branch station at shift change. I would call the station ahead of time and give them all the details so that they would understand what is going down and who is involved. This is about the only safe way to transact a cash deal.

    Unfortunately, the only other safe method is through one of the businesses who buy your car - OR search for the average retail value of the car and check as suggested at a few dealers for a best offer. You will never get retail value for it from a dealer because that is what he will try to sell it for, so you're going to have to sell for less.

    Sorry that is about the best I can do. The absolute best method is to sell to someone you know - real well.
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    VIP Member Array Sister's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conundrum View Post
    I'm in the car business... every dealer I know, including us, is looking for used inventory all day every day. I'd roll it by a few dealers and see what they'll bid for it, typically a dealership of the same brand will pay a bit more. Car Max is also a good choice. You can certainly get a little more for it selling to an individual but then you have the hassles that can come with that... what if something breaks and so on...

    If by mini you a mini cooper, those cars are pretty unique and have a following all their own. That will typically make them a little better prospect for a private sale. If you go that route meet some place very public and make sure you get paid in certified funds.
    Awesome! We can do that this weekend. Great ideas about the police station we didn’t know that they allowed it. Yes it’s is a Mini Cooper, cute car! Both vehicles are paid for, it’s just that this one would bring in more money and honestly the Buick is much more comfortable even if it is older and not as cute. Houston is flooded with mini’s, so the popularity may be in our favor.
    Trust God.

    What would happen if you put the same amount of trust in God that you do in the brakes on what your driving on the highways?

    Think about it.

  14. #14
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    Here's another source for a direct sale. Caravan. com

    They have a presence in Houston and have 7 Mini's listed locally. Maybe they'd like to have eight.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sister View Post
    We’re trying to decide to take a loss on a car at about $2,000 to sell it safer. Houston is giant, lots of crime and we don’t want to deal with any of that. Would it be smarter to just sell it at a loss just to be safe and keep the car from being stolen and driven across the border (or where ever)?

    Car-Max online was giving us the best price, this is for a straight drive mini so the straight drive would knock some of the prospective byers out.

    We are not sure what to do, advertise it on Craig’s list and make more but have a high risk or sell it to car-max?

    Any ideas, thoughts?


    [no on a trade in, we have one car to many now]
    Craigs List in this major metro area (Phoenix) is fraught with ripoff and scam artists. The higher the value of the transaction, the greater the risk.

    How about putting a "for sale" a sign in the car's window with a phone number? If you use the car for shopping and errands it'll get a lot of exposure. Also, if it's special in any way, there are enthusiast forums and web sites that allow "for sale" listings, as this forum does. I sold my last car (a 23 year old Volvo wagon with a manual transmission and 275,000 miles) that way and even had an auction going between two interested parties.
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