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sold my car using craigslist
Old 05-27-2017, 02:31 PM   #1
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sold my car using craigslist

Last week, I sold my 2004 Toyota Camry using a post on craigslist.com as my only marketing approach. The car sold after only 4 days online. This is the 3rd old Camry I've sold using craigslist (the others were a 1992 and a 1995). Craigslist has the reputation of being overrun with flakes and scammers, and, well, it's true. I received a total of 21 inquiries about the car, of which I discarded 17 as not worth pursuing. Of the 4 genuine inquiries, the first couple who looked at the car made a reasonable offer and got the car. If you have a well-developed BS detector, craigslist can work for you as a car seller. I have no experience using craigslist as a car buyer.

Just my 2˘ - YMMV.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:43 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by socca View Post
Last week, I sold my 2004 Toyota Camry using a post on craigslist.com as my only marketing approach. The car sold after only 4 days online. This is the 3rd old Camry I've sold using craigslist (the others were a 1992 and a 1995). Craigslist has the reputation of being overrun with flakes and scammers, and, well, it's true. I received a total of 21 inquiries about the car, of which I discarded 17 as not worth pursuing. Of the 4 genuine inquiries, the first couple who looked at the car made a reasonable offer and got the car. If you have a well-developed BS detector, craigslist can work for you as a car seller. I have no experience using craigslist as a car buyer.

Just my 2˘ - YMMV.
i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:45 PM   #3
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DW sold her motor scooter on CL a couple of weeks ago. Very similar experience. Quick and easy. We were quite impressed.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:48 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Blue Collar Guy View Post
i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
Good point. I closed the sale at a local DMV office to make sure that the buyers properly registered the car in their name. I wouldn't consider any other approach.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:48 PM   #5
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i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
That couldn't happen here. When you sell a vehicle you sign over the title in front of a notary, then turn in the license plate to the county clerk with the name and address of the buyer. The buyer has to arrange for insurance, registration and new title, but the seller is off the hook.
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Old 05-27-2017, 02:49 PM   #6
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I sold 2 cars over some list. Edmund list maybe? No problem. I never do trade in. I think I call my insurance company to remove the car.
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Old 05-27-2017, 03:37 PM   #7
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I sold a specialty car a few weeks ago. I have sold a few items on Craigslist and always say" text only, I'll return it ASAP" it seems to work fairly well at keeping the riff-raff away. I had only one guy contact me several times who wanted to help me sell my car for a few hundred dollars fee. I never answer numbers I don't know. It want to voicemail and I never had to deal with him personally.

As for the buyer not titling after the sale, Illinois titles now have a tear-away section that both the seller and buyer fill out declaring transfer. The seller sends it off to the State DMV to be free from any liability. I also keep a bill of sale with a copy of the buyer's Driver's License. I think this is about as good a protection one can have. I have sold cars to buyers in Canada and 2 states away. Closing at the local DMV isn't always possible.

Definitely call the Insurance co. They give you a refund on unused time left on the policy if you don't transfer it to a new vehicle.
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Old 05-27-2017, 03:39 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Blue Collar Guy View Post
i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
This happened to our nephew... The new owner racked up a bunch of parking tickets.

If he had taken the time to fill out the "notice of transfer and release of liability" form and submit it to the DMV he would have avoided this. It can be done online here in CA.

I've sold a few cars on Craigslist. We do the final transfer at AAA or the DMV so I can see the new owner is transferring the title to their name. AAA is easiest - shorter lines... one benefit to AAA membership.
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Old 05-27-2017, 03:56 PM   #9
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I tried selling my wife's 2000 Honda Accord last year on Craigslist and didn't have much success. Got a good bit of inquiries like OP, but not a lot of people that actually showed up. I was kind of in a hurry to sell it (going on extended vacation; didn't want to deal with registration, inspection, tax, etc for the new year coming up in a few months) so I even dropped the price by $200 every few days in what was basically a reverse bid process.

I ended up selling that car to my nephew for a little below blue book ($2300 for a well-maintained low mileage but ugly Honda Accord that was 16 years old - I saw similar cars listed online and at dealers for way more than that but just couldn't find a buyer on CL).

In contrast, I sold my FIL's old white construction van on CL for WAY over Kelly Blue Book and did so in just a few days. It even threw a check engine light code after a few showings, and I was going to fix it but the buyer didn't care - he bought it as-is! I had a ton of interest in the van. YMMV but I'd probably sell again this way and hopefully next time I'd time it better so I'm in no hurry to sell.
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Old 05-27-2017, 04:56 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Blue Collar Guy View Post
i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
How does a new owner get license plates without registering the vehicle? Or does the new owner move plates from another car?
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Old 05-27-2017, 05:10 PM   #11
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How does a new owner get license plates without registering the vehicle? Or does the new owner move plates from another car?
They slap on any plates,usually the paper ones that you see laying on the side of the street, they take a magic maker and extend the 30/60/90 day expiration depending on what state the paper plate is from. Insurance? hahah, see above ,the original owner had the headache
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Old 05-27-2017, 05:15 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by FUEGO View Post
I tried selling my wife's 2000 Honda Accord last year on Craigslist and didn't have much success. Got a good bit of inquiries like OP, but not a lot of people that actually showed up. I was kind of in a hurry to sell it (going on extended vacation; didn't want to deal with registration, inspection, tax, etc for the new year coming up in a few months) so I even dropped the price by $200 every few days in what was basically a reverse bid process.

I ended up selling that car to my nephew for a little below blue book ($2300 for a well-maintained low mileage but ugly Honda Accord that was 16 years old - I saw similar cars listed online and at dealers for way more than that but just couldn't find a buyer on CL).

In contrast, I sold my FIL's old white construction van on CL for WAY over Kelly Blue Book and did so in just a few days. It even threw a check engine light code after a few showings, and I was going to fix it but the buyer didn't care - he bought it as-is! I had a ton of interest in the van. YMMV but I'd probably sell again this way and hopefully next time I'd time it better so I'm in no hurry to sell.
Not surprised - those white construction vans are in HUGE demand. Many of the buyers are hands-on type of guys who don't mind fiddling with car repairs, but are generally cash-poor.
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Old 05-27-2017, 05:17 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Blue Collar Guy View Post
i know a guy who sold his car on Craigs list, the new owners never registered it. Guess who got all the headaches ? yup the original owner what headaches? hahah the car was involved in a hit and run, the V.I.N. still belonged to the old owner.
I'm sure he could have taken steps to properly cancel/transfer his ownership. At the bare minimum, I'd have the buyer sign a "sold as in as is condition" contract with the time and date. I would remove the plates before handing over the keys and immediately cancel the insurance. It probably wouldn't hurt to include the buyer's driver's license information on the bill of sale.
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Old 05-27-2017, 05:19 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by socca View Post
Last week, I sold my 2004 Toyota Camry using a post on craigslist.com as my only marketing approach. The car sold after only 4 days online. This is the 3rd old Camry I've sold using craigslist (the others were a 1992 and a 1995). Craigslist has the reputation of being overrun with flakes and scammers, and, well, it's true. I received a total of 21 inquiries about the car, of which I discarded 17 as not worth pursuing. Of the 4 genuine inquiries, the first couple who looked at the car made a reasonable offer and got the car. If you have a well-developed BS detector, craigslist can work for you as a car seller. I have no experience using craigslist as a car buyer.

Just my 2˘ - YMMV.
Agreed - I just sold my 81 CB750K Honda motorcycle on CL in less than two days. First guy who showed up to look at it drove in from 3 hours away, so I figured he probably was serious. Sure enough, paid full price.
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Old 05-27-2017, 06:49 PM   #15
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In 2011 I bought a 2007 BMW750 w 9,000 miles for $33k from Craigslist. Just passed 50k miles and was a great car buying experience.

OTOH, looked at an old Range Rover found on Craigslist with my daughter a couple of months ago. Got the VIN before meeting seller, and found the car had recently sold. The current seller explained he "had bought it a month before, but liked it so much he was going to get a newer model". DANGER WILL ROBINSON! But my daughter REALLY wanted the car. I set up appmt at mechanic, seller never showed up.
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Old 05-27-2017, 07:00 PM   #16
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I have sold cars to buyers in Canada and 2 states away.
I had half-a-dozen out-of-state inquiries, including one from Honolulu (what's up with that ). Those went straight into the discard folder . I wasn't in any rush to sell the car, and since the car definitely didn't qualify as a specialty vehicle, it certainly didn't require a special buyer. Reliable, low-mileage, older vehicles are in high demand. Many of the prospective buyers disappeared when I mentioned the anti-fraud precautions I was going to take. Good riddance!
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Old 05-27-2017, 07:09 PM   #17
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I'm sure he could have taken steps to properly cancel/transfer his ownership. At the bare minimum, I'd have the buyer sign a "sold as in as is condition" contract with the time and date. I would remove the plates before handing over the keys and immediately cancel the insurance. It probably wouldn't hurt to include the buyer's driver's license information on the bill of sale.
These are middle class folks , sign a contract written by who? im talking about workin people here, not lawyers.
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Old 05-27-2017, 07:23 PM   #18
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These are middle class folks , sign a contract written by who? im talking about workin people here, not lawyers.
Sorry, I said contract but really meant bill of sale. A lawyer isn't needed for a simple transfer of goods, but I do want a written record signed by both parties. When I sold my last vehicle I made up 2 pages similar to this:

I, Music Lover, sell my 1995 Dodge Dakota, VIN# 123456789, odometer 100,000 km, in "as is" condition to Blue Collar Guy on this day of May 27, 2016 for the sum of $3,000.

Then we both signed both copies, one for each of us. I removed the plates before handing over the keys, and immediately cancelled the insurance by phoning the insurance company. I don't recall if I did, but it wouldn't hurt to write down the driver's license information on the bill of sale.
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Old 05-27-2017, 08:40 PM   #19
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If you sell your car on CraigsList, you put yourself in crummy company.

What I mean by that, and this is my experience from trying to BUY a car from Craig's List, too many sellers want to sell their car if they can get top-dollar for it. Otherwise, they'll just keep listing it (doesn't cost them anything).

So by listing in CL, you are in a group of people where many of them are not highly motivated sellers. My experience was going to see a car that's way over blue book for it's condition and the seller didn't even want to talk price or fill in the details as to why he thought buyers would pay more than it's worth. This happened on several CL cars...every one I contacted, in fact.

When I switched to listings that cost the sellers (even as little as a few bucks a day), they were much more attentive to returning calls, setting/keeping appointments, and discussing a reasonable price.

As they say, YMMV.
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Old 05-27-2017, 10:53 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by CRLLS View Post
I sold a specialty car a few weeks ago. I have sold a few items on Craigslist and always say" text only, I'll return it ASAP" it seems to work fairly well at keeping the riff-raff away. I had only one guy contact me several times who wanted to help me sell my car for a few hundred dollars fee. I never answer numbers I don't know. It want to voicemail and I never had to deal with him personally.

As for the buyer not titling after the sale, Illinois titles now have a tear-away section that both the seller and buyer fill out declaring transfer. The seller sends it off to the State DMV to be free from any liability. I also keep a bill of sale with a copy of the buyer's Driver's License. I think this is about as good a protection one can have. I have sold cars to buyers in Canada and 2 states away. Closing at the local DMV isn't always possible.

Definitely call the Insurance co. They give you a refund on unused time left on the policy if you don't transfer it to a new vehicle.
I sold an old car, so it didn't have the tear away part.
I took off my plates.
I saw the seller put the car on the market, lying about the car to ask a higher price.

I phoned the DMV, and sent them a statement saying how I sold it.
I felt IL really has a lousy system, for private folks selling their car, basically a person can buy a car and never licence/register it and drive it around..
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