Car buying guide. Scooters & bikes. Buyers contract.

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BUYING A NEW CAR IS AN EXCITING TIME HOWEVER THERE ARE A LOT OF PEOPLE HAPPY TO CON YOU OUT OF YOUR HARD EARNED CASH.

AS I USED TO BE IN THE MOTOR TRADE I CAN ONLY REALLY ADVISE YOU ON BUYING CARS HOWEVER THE PRINCIPAL WOULD APPLY TO MOST ITEMS.

FOLLOWING THESE FEW SIMPLE STEPS COULD SAVE YOU A LOT OF TIME AND MONEY !


1. NEVER BUY A VEHICLE WITHOUT A LOGBOOK. WALK AWAY.

2. ALWAYS ASK LOTS OF QUESTIONS ABOUT THE ITEM YOU ARE THINKING OF BUYING. MAKE SURE YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT YOU ARE BUYING BEFORE YOU START BIDDING.

 3. IF A VEHICLE HAS LESS THAN 3 MONTHS MOT ASK THE SELLER IF THEY WOULD BE WILLING TO HAVE THE CAR MOT'D.

4. IN THE EVENT OF A CAR BEING SOLD AS AN MOT FAILURE, ASK THE SELLER TO SPECIFY THE LIST OF FAILURES, THEN GIVE YOUR LOCAL GARAGE A RING AND ASK THEM TO GIVE YOU A QUOTE FOR THE WORK THAT NEEDS TO BE CARRIED OUT.

5. KEEP COPIES OF ALL EMAILS SENT AND RECEIVED BETWEEN YOU AND THE SELLER. THEY WILL COME IN HANDY IF A DISPUTE ARISES OVER THE DESCRIPTION OF THE ITEM OR ANY PROMISES THE SELLER MAKES YOU.

6. IS THE SELLER A TRADER OR PRIVATE SELLER? THERE ARE SO MANY PEOPLE WHO BUY JUNK FROM CAR AUCTIONS AND THEN SIMPLY TRY TO PASS THEM OFF AS THEIR OWN VEHICLES FOR A QUICK PROFIT.

7. IF THE SELLER IS A TRADER PASSING THEMSELVES OFF AS A PRIVATE SELLER AND THEY ARE WILLING TO LIE ABOUT THEIR STATUS WHAT ELSE ARE THEY WILLING TO LIE ABOUT?

8. IF THE VEHICLE IS BEING SOLD BY A PRIVATE SELLER, ASK THEM HOW LONG THEY OWNED THE VEHICLE FOR? IS THE LOGBOOK REGISTERED IN THEIR NAME AND AT THEIR ADDRESS? IF IT IS A GENUINE PRIVATE SALE? ALL THE ANSWERS TO THE ABOVE QUESTIONS SHOULD BE YES.


A FEW EXAMPLES OF THE EXCUSES GIVEN BY BOGUS PRIVATE SELLERS FOR NOT HAVING THE VEHICLE REGISTERED IN THEIR NAME .

1. I BOUGHT THE CAR FOR MY PARTNER OR & THEY DON'T LIKE IT!!
2. INSURANCE IS TOO HIGH.
3. PARTNER DID NOT LIKE THE CAR AS IT'S TOO BIG OR TOO FAST OR THEY FAILED THEIR DRIVING TEST
4. I BOUGHT THE CAR AS A STOP GAP

REMEMBER IT IS A LEGAL REQUIREMENT TO REGISTER A VEHICLE IN YOUR NAME REGARDLESS OF HOW LONG YOU INTEND ON KEEPING THE CAR

A TRADER SHOULD AND WILL DISCLOSE THE FACT THAT THEY ARE A TRADER, REMEMBER IF YOU BUY THROUGH THE TRADE THEY HAVE OBLIGATIONS TO RECTIFY ANY PROBLEMS WITH THE CAR

ALWAYS CHECK OUT THE SELLERS FEEDBACK, THIS WILL GIVE YOU A GOOD IDEA OF HONESTY AND ALSO WHAT THEY HAVE BEEN BUYING AND SELLING.
BEFORE YOU GO TO COLLECT THE CAR, PRINT OUT THE ITEM PAGE AND TAKE IT WITH YOU. IF THE SELLER HAS MIS-DESCRIBED THE ITEM IN ANY WAY, YOU WILL HAVE THE PROOF IN YOUR HANDS TO ARGUE YOUR CASE.

IF BUYING FROM A PRIVATE SELLER, ALWAYS MEET THE SELLER AT THEIR HOME ADDRESS WHICH SHOULD MATCH THE ADDRESS THE CAR IS REGISTERED AT. IF THERE IS A PROBLEM AT LEAST YOU WILL HAVE AN ADDRESS TO GO BACK TO.

WHEN YOU GO TO COLLECT THE VEHICLE AND YOU ARE UNSURE ABOUT THE VEHICLE OR THE SELLER WALK AWAY. NEVER PART WITH YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY. ONCE YOU HAVE HANDED YOUR MONEY OVER, YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO GET IT BACK.

WHAT'S THE WORST THAT CAN HAPPEN IF YOU WALK AWAY? - NOTHING.

AS A WINNING BIDDER YOU HAVE AN OBLIGATION TO COMPLETE THE TRANSACTION, HOWEVER THE SELLER  HAS A GREATER OBLIGATION TO BE HONEST ABOUT THE ITEM THEY ARE SELLING.

REMEMBER THE BASIC RULES APPLY EVEN IF YOU ARE BUYING FROM A TRADER OR PRIVATE SELLER
IF SOMETHING SOUNDS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE THEN IT USUALLY IS!

Buying a used car is always a tricky proposition. It's always a bit of a gamble. That makes it especially important to know your rights when you buy a used vehicle.


Buying From a Dealer
Buying a used car from a dealer is still probably the safest way to go, but that doesn't mean all dealers are 100% honest. What you need is someone established, with a good reputation. Ask your friends, or look for one with a trade association sign.

The Retail Motor Industry Federation or the Scottish Motor Trade Association can give you a list of their members. Does the dealer have his cars inspected? If so, by whom? Is it an independent engineer? Or is it by a motoring organisation? Don't be afraid ask for the report. It won't be that detailed, but it'll still be useful. You can also arrange for your own mechanic to inspect the car. However, if your mechanic misses a problem, the dealer won't be liable. The Sale of Goods Act covers used cars. That means they must be 'of satisfactory quality' (allowing for the fact they're used), as 'described to you, and fit for any normal purpose,' including any that you especially specify to the dealer. Warranties or guarantees don't affect these rights.

If something goes wrong after you've bought the car, go back to the dealer straight away. Explain the problem and how you want him to remedy it. If you aren't happy with what they say, contact Trading Standards. If the dealer is a part of a trade association, they should be able to help you. If you belong to the AA or RAC, they may help.


Buying Privately
Buying privately might be a cheaper option, but it's much riskier, because you have far fewer rights. The only qualification is that the car needs to be 'as described'. If a private seller lies about the car's condition, then you can sue him.
Sometimes dealers pretend to be private sellers. It's an attempt to get rid of dubious cars and avoid their obligations. If you see several ads with the same phone number, watch out. If the seller is really a dealer, then your Sale of Goods Act rights apply.


Buying At Auction
Auctions can give great bargains - but you really need a proper knowledge of cars. Before you bid, read the auctioneer's conditions of business carefully. If the seller has a disclaimer on the car, then your rights might not apply.


Buying On line
Buying a used car from a dealer over the Internet can be a gamble, but you have the same rights as if you'd bought it in person. You may even have more rights, including a seven day cooling-off period.


Problems
It's always advisable to have an independent inspection and vehicle data check before you buy a used car. The vehicle data check will tell you whether a car's an insurance write-off.
If you discover you've bought a stolen car, you have a problem. The police can return it to the original owner, and you won't receive a penny back - and if you're buying it on credit, you'll still be responsible for the loan. You can sue the seller, of course, but if it's a private sale you'll have to find him first.

Know Your Rights

Wherever you buy
Whether you're buying brand new or you're after a used car, the best advice is, don't sign or pay anything until you're absolutely happy. Make sure you're satisfied that your chosen car is mechanically sound and there are no outstanding issues or third parties involved. For example, a car bought with a loan or on hire purchase belongs to the finance company until the loan is paid off.


Dealers
Dealers are generally the safest route to a new car. You'll get the maximum legal protection with the least risk. The dealer must have the right to sell the car, so check all the documentation is in order.

For less than the price of a tank of fuel and for extra peace of mind, you could run an AA Car Data Check on a used car. Just the registration number and the vehicle identification number (VIN) can tell you if the car has been stolen, has been written off by an insurer or even has outstanding finance. Note that they cannot let you know if the car is a third-party or self–insured write off.

Check that the car fits the seller's description and its history or condition is not misleading. It goes without saying that the car must be suitable for all the demands claimed for that model. This includes any particular purpose that you tell the dealer about before you buy, or which the dealer has advertised or gleaned from your conversation.

Of course the car you're considering must be of 'satisfactory quality', unless you're made aware of any specific defects before you buy the vehicle. If you've had the car examined, the dealer won't be liable for defects that the examiner missed.

Be realistic - 'Satisfactory quality' will be based on the age, mileage, price and any other relevant factors. If there's a dispute after you've bought it, the question of whether a 'reasonable/objective' person would consider the car to be of satisfactory quality, plays a part in a court of law. Naturally, a used car wouldn't be expected to meet the same standards as a new car.

If the car you buy doesn't measure up to these standards, the dealer is responsible for sorting out your complaint. This may mean you'll be entitled to your money back, or to have the fault repaired.

However, what you'll be entitled to will vary, so you should seek legal advice.

Additionally, you may get a warranty from the manufacturer or from the dealer. This will cover you for certain defects, taking time and mileage limitations and servicing requirements into consideration. There can also be claim limits. It is best to ask to see a specimen policy to ensure it meets your needs.


Internet
If you choose to buy over the Internet, your rights will depend on the contract and the law governing that contract. Read any terms and conditions carefully, and be sure to check which country's law governs your contract.

Small print You'll be covered by The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations. This legislation states that you must be given clear information about the product you're about to buy on line.

This should include accurate details about the product, delivery arrangements, supplier details and the full price, with any taxes and charges to cover extras such as delivery.


Change of heart
The law also says you'll have a cooling-off period of seven working days if you want to cancel your order. This is dated from the time you receive your goods. You should also be given written information on how to cancel your contract and a postal address, plus you'll be entitled to a full refund within 30 days.

Make sure that you know which type of contract you're entering into – whether it's with an agent, a supplier or a private sale.


Foreign terms
If you're buying from overseas, you may find that your rights are different from those in the UK. It pays to ensure you're dealing with a reputable company.

Whoever you choose, make sure the site is 'secure', so your personal details cannot be intercepted. Look for a padlock at the bottom of your browser window.


Private
If you buy privately, you won't be protected legally if the car doesn't come up to scratch. It's up to you to ask the right questions and have the car thoroughly inspected before you buy.


Safeguards
Essentially it's a case of 'Buyer Beware'. As the onus is on you to make sure the car is sound, it's a good idea to get an independent engineer to give the car a thorough mechanical inspection.


Hidden past
Then, there are past owners to consider. You could opt for an AA Car Data Check, which will let you know if there's outstanding finance on the car, or even if it has a shady history.
Your legal rights are limited and unscrupulous dealers often masquerade as private sellers, so beware.

The only legal terms that cover a private sale contract are:
    The seller must have the right to sell the car
    The vehicle should not be misrepresented
    It should match its description:

          For example, if the ad states that there is a valid MOT, there should be a valid MOT.
Remember, if there are problems, you can only claim against someone you can find, and who has the means to meet your claim.

Therefore:
    Go to the seller's address and if possible get a home phone number – don't meet someone on a street corner
    Check the documents carefully – make sure the seller is the person named on the registration document and other papers.
The AA Car Buyer's Contract can offer you some protection if you're buying privately.
Auctions


If you buy at auction you again have very little legal protection. Should you find defects on the car after you've bought it, you'll only have redress against the auctioneer if the auction house misled you. However, this depends on the facts and the conditions of sale.


Liability.

Generally the auctioneer won't be liable if the seller doesn't have the right to sell the car in the first place – if it is stolen for example. Any comeback you may have will be against the seller himself, so long as he hasn't disappeared.

Some auctions offer 'guarantees' or 'insurance' for an extra sum, but any rights are limited, so check the wording on any paperwork carefully.

Be warned If you're buying a car that has been sold by an auction house on behalf of a private owner, then the inferred terms about the car's road worthiness and quality won't cover the car. So if it turns out to be a dud, the owner bears no responsibility.

If the auction house is representing a business, then the business does have a responsibility to ensure that the car is roadworthy and in a condition fit for sale. However, all your rights will ultimately depend on the conditions of the sale.


Buyer's Contract
--------------------
For private sales
If you're buying a used car, print two copies out and complete them in front of the seller. Each party should sign and keep a copy of this document as proof of sale.

Car Details
Make -
Model -
Registration Number -
Mileage -

Does the vehicle identification number match the V5 document? Yes/No

Registration Document completed by buyer/seller Yes/No

Registration Document (V5) exchanged Yes/No

Additional Notes/Comments -


The undersigned purchaser acknowledges receipt of the above vehicle in exchange for the cash sum (eg banker's draft, personal cheque) of £............ being the price agreed by the purchaser with the vendor for the above named vehicle, receipt of which the vendor hereby acknowledges.

Purchaser -

Vendor -

Date -

If you buy a vehicle from a dealer, you’re covered by the Sale of Goods Act 1979. This means it must be:

• Of satisfactory quality, bearing in mind its age, what it cost and how it was described to you. It should be free from serious defects, other than those you were made aware of

• As described. If the dealer says it's a 2-litre, and it's actually a 1.6-litre, you can reject the car and seek a refund or replacement

• Fit for any reasonable purpose. The car should do all that you reasonably expect of it, including any specifics you state to the dealer. If you need a car for towing and the dealer says a 1-litre super mini will be fine, you can reject the car if it struggles


However, if you pay for the car to be inspected, the dealer is not responsible for any faults the inspection should have found and you should always get a statement on the car's condition from the dealer.

If your car is faulty, you have six months from the date of purchase in which you can reject it. You can demand repair or a replacement, unless it would cause 'disproportionate' or 'significant inconvenience' to the seller.

Examples of this would be if a repair would be as effective as a replacement, or if a price reduction would be more appropriate for minor defects.

Dealers must now prove the vehicle was of satisfactory quality when it was sold. This means you no longer need to seek an independent inspection.

However, if you believe your car is faulty, you must stop using the car immediately, and contact the dealer directly. You need to follow this up in writing, providing evidence of the problems.

If you've bought the vehicle from a franchised dealer, you can speak to the manufacturer direct. They don't want to get a bad name because a dealer hasn't provided the expected level of service.


What about a private sale?

You have far less legal comeback when buying privately. The only obligation for sellers is to describe the car truthfully - but even if they don't, getting compensation from them can be difficult, time-consuming and costly.

However, you can still expect a car to be:

• Capable of passing an MOT, unless the seller specifies it isn't

• Owned by the person who is selling it - because if you later find out it's been stolen, you have no legal right to keep it


This was the scooter that I had recently asked the seller about.
It was advertised as a BUY IT NOW for £350.00
With all its extras, it has a sale value of around £1000.00.

So I wrote him a letter.

Hi there TM.
Can you give me some details about the bike please. I'm really really interested and think that it would make a perfect present. I assume that it is registered for the road and you have the V5 document. Is there any MOT with it, or will I have to get that sorted myself.
I assume that cash on collection/delivery applies in situations like this as PayPal is not advised/allowed on vehicle transactions as far as I'm aware.
Hopefully you can see by my feedback that I'm a genuine buyer & Power Seller. Many thanks.


This was his reply to me .....

Hello,
I am selling this scooter for £350 including delivery. I think this is a low price. The only reason is that i need cash for a family emergency. I have to tell you that I'm currently out of town with some major problems so pick up/view isn't an option. If you want to buy this bike email me back with your full name and address to start the official procedure trough eBay. They will send you a notification with ALL the info regarding delivery, purchase protection and refund policy so please provide your details before more questions. You will find 90% of answers in that notification from eBay!
Yes, i have the V5 document and MOT till Feb 2008. Please send me your name and address and you will get all the details from ebay regarding payment and refund policy.
Thanks


So I wrote to him................


Hi. That's sounds OK.
Do you want my home address, or my work address.
My work address is (as that is where I work during the day and would be the best place to have it delivered)
D.C. ********
c/o Satt Hall Police Station
CIB Annexe
Gipton Road
Halifax HX3 4QL
Yorkshire
Or would my home address be better for you?
Thanks.


Guess what? He never replied !


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