While many used car dealers still perceive buying Craigslist used cars as not worth the time or the hassle, this is not true. With proper guidance and strategy, you can expand your used car inventory with high-quality vehicles that are in high demand. Here are some tips for purchasing high-quality used cars on craigslist.
Quality Tips for Finding and Buying Craigslist Used Cars
Finding the perfect used car on Craigslist shouldn't be too much hassle if you know where to look. This post outlines how you can get the best-used car deal on Craigslist at the best price.
1. Use Craigslist Filters
Craigslist has thousands of clients looking to sell their cars. You could spend hours looking for the right vehicle that suits your needs if you're not too careful. We suggest you use the platform's built-in search filters to help narrow your search.
Your filter options can include the price of the car, year, model, color, transmission type, and more. Craigslist's built-in filter will save you countless hours wading through hundreds of listings you might not be interested in. You can search by car, feature, price or year, or dealer, making your work easier.
2. Call the Seller
Contacting the seller via phone before agreeing to meet is the best way of gauging their seriousness and willingness to go through with the sale. Take advantage of this time to ask the big questions before committing to the purchase.
Are the check engine lights on/working? How many owners? Does the seller have the vehicle history record? Asking such questions lets you know what you're looking for as you pick the seller's character. You can tell if the seller sounds composed or sketchy by how they answer your questions.
3. Meet on Neutral Ground
Once you have everything settled via phone, you can organize to meet on neutral ground for the sale and other discussions. While it is generally expected for the buyer to go to the seller, meeting in a public place, preferably with lots of foot traffic and credible witnesses, is often much safer and more controlled.
You don't stockpile your used car inventory by risking meeting sellers in unfamiliar, uncontrolled places. Remember, you want to feel comfortable with the purchase because even Craigslist used cars are enormous investments.
4. Insist on a Test Drive
You must test drive the used car before buying it. But before jumping into the driver's seat, ask to see the seller's ID, registration card, and insurance. Ensure the names and photos match the documentation provided. It's always better to be safe and skeptical, especially when buying from online sellers.
The test drive should include some highway, stop-and-go, and a review of all the vehicle's features and functions. Check all the windows and locks, A/C and heater, 4WD, brakes, etc. What you learn from the test drive can also help you negotiate a better price.
The seller must also have a bill of sale for the car that you will take to the DMV to change the vehicle's title and register under your name. The bill of sale should include the signatures of the buyer and seller and other crucial documentation like the vehicle identification number (VIN). Ensure the vehicle is represented as it is described in the documentation. It will be easier to purchase the used car once all the documents are in order.
Kickstart Your Acquisition
These tips will help you find high-quality Craigslist used cars at the best price. For car dealers, VettX can help kickstart your used car acquisition efforts. Get a personalized demo of our dealership services today.