Buy a Car On Ebay - I Did
My husband and I decided to try our hand at eBay motors, when we were unable to find the type of used car we wanted for the money we had to spend. Being a big fan of eBay, I suggested we research their eBay Motors section and my husband agreed. The car was to be a work car for hubby so we didn't want anything too new as he would be hauling tools and dirt and grease back and forth from work to home. So we didn't mind if it had high mileage, as long as the engine was basically sound.
I still have the car, which is like the one pictured, a '96 Ford Crown Victoria. However, the picture is of a police car and it is white. My car is bronze and I'm not a cop, but the make and style are the same.
Hub Written By Techhound
- Is it Safe to Buy a Car on eBay?
A fellow hubber, techhound, as written a hub about how to safely buy an eBay car. Please check it out, as it is very thorough in explaining the basics of buying a car in such a manner, from such a site.
Not A Risky Venture
It never came to my mind that I would be cheated or that we were taking a chance by buying online or by buying from eBay. I guess it was because I had never had any unresolvable experiences with my eBay purchases and I knew I would be paying with my Paypal account which came with automatic protection. I was very confident that if I followed directions, everything would be OK and that if by chance things did not work out, I would be able to go to eBay and ask them to rectify matters in my behalf.
How did we make out buying from eBay Motors? Very well, actually. Would I recommend buying from eBay to others? Yes I would, with some qualifications. Please read Techhounds hub to see the steps and procedurs I followed to make sure all my bases were covered.
Why Did I Chose to Buy Online?
For me the convenience factor weighed in as my top priority.
My husband had spent time and energy checking out cars in our area with no success. It was time consuming and irritating, especially when you consider the reason we needed a car to begin with. You see, my husband was travelling to work early one wintry and snowy morning, when another driver on the opposite side of the road, crossed the Atlantic City Expressway, traveled across the grass median and hit him head-on. He was on the southbound side, she was on the northbound side. She was not only a distracted and lousy driver, but she was also an uninsured motorist. Our insurance had to pay to replace our car, which was a '95 Crown Victoria. I liked the car so was hoping to get another similar to it, but just a year or so younger.
Since he had spent so much time doing all the leg work, I thought trying eBay might render some better results. It was the only way I could help out in the car search, because I didn't have the energy to travel to private and public sellers and dealers. I did, however, have the energy to read and investigate and e-mail cars found on eBay's site.
MY BUYING PROCESS
I followed all the basic suggestions made by eBay as outlined by techhound's hub. I didn't want to go through the actual bidding process because it just aggravates me to think I've won a bid only to be outbid in the last seconds by bidders who's soul purpose in life seems to be to steal bids from others.
That meant purchasing a car using the "Buy It Now" option. No hassling, or waiting, or living by eBay's official time clock, hoping someone doesn't come along at the last possible second and win the car you've been waiting for days to purchase. With the BIN option, you do all the contacting ahead of time. In our case I e-mailed and telephoned the dealer. I checked out the car's VIN for damage, which years ago meant just checking one or two sites.
Nowadays you have to spend more time making sure there is no unreported damage to the car, and that it hasn't been cloned. That the Title is legit and available and you have to closely inspect the manufacturing date inside the driver's door, not forgetting to check for lot rot while you are at it.
But back when we purchased our used car, everything checked out with one or two sites so we felt free to proceed with confidence.
Paying For Our Car
Once we decided on the car, which was only a 45 minute ride away from our house, we had to put a $500.00 deposit down using my Paypal account.
This was my one bump in an otherwise smooth road. Being inexperienced with buying a car online, I and the car dealer selling the car, both made mistakes regarding the financial transaction. So, I would recommend making sure the monies have cleared totally before you put a deposit down. If memory serves me correctly, we both assumed the transaction was approved sooner than it was, which somehow caused problems with the withdrawal process. In effect, we both bounced our accounts almost simultaneously.
If I buy another car from eBay I would read that part more carefully and give it more time before I purchased the car, to make sure the account has actually received the down payment money.
- eBay Motors - Buying Resources & Services
eBay's information: Before You Buy, How to Buy a Vehicle, Get Ready to Drive, and their Get Help sections.
Picking Up Our Car
We really didn't want to travel a long way to get our car, so we stayed local in our search on eBay's site. We wanted to travel only about 50 or 60 miles at the most and we ended up finding a car about 45 minutes away from our home. We met the seller at a predetermined place and we checked out the car and took it for a test drive. Being satisfied that the car was as advertised, we happily paid the remaining balance due by check, were given the title and off we went, our separate ways.
Back to that bump in the road
If I had a do-over, or if I ever buy another eBay car, I will probably deal with a money order or cash. That misunderstanding with the cash deposit multiplied and the check given to our seller bounced. We had to run around to get the cash to give the seller and go back to meet him so that he could still catch his plane and head back to his native home. It was an aggravation that could have been avoided if I understood the time it takes certain transactions to clear. My bank was very helpful in explaining why I should have waited longer, so I did learn something, but at the time all the confusion was stressful on top of everything else.
However, we survived and got a car that we were very happy with. I am a little disappointed with Ford's ability to make a car that can endure because although the engine is in pretty decent shape, the driver's door is totally falling apart, to the extent that it will not pass inspection in its present condition.
Since I am not physically able to drive right now, it isn't a problem, but if and when I get back on my feet and if and when my husband is sent back out to work, then we'll have to decide what we will do about getting another vehicle.
You Bought A Car From Ebay?
Everyone that finds out our car came from eBay is so surprised. Knowing it worked out well has even prompted questions from a couple of relatives looking to at least consider the possibility they had ignored previously. I'm sure everyone hasn't had a positive experience, but we kept it simple, followed directions and quickly corrected our mistakes, so everything worked out well for us.
I'd love to hear about your experiences, or feel free to refer a hub in the comments section so that we can share all the good sites available for car research purposes.