scardeal
scardeal SuperDork
9/11/18 7:50 a.m.

So, I'm about to make a private party purchase of a car (I finally found one I think I want!).  The rub is that the purchase price will be more cash than I'm comfortable carrying around. 

How have you dealt with large private party purchases?  Tips?

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
9/11/18 7:53 a.m.

A lot of times you can meet the seller at a bank with a cashier's check. 

DeadSkunk
DeadSkunk PowerDork
9/11/18 8:06 a.m.

Ann Arbor has a special parking lot, right by the police station and it's monitored. Try your local cop shop.

 

Duke
Duke MegaDork
9/11/18 8:20 a.m.

I took a cashier's check with me on a fly-n-drive to Atlanta.  But that was 20 years ago.  I don't know if cashier's checks are still a thing in this post-identity-theft age.

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
9/11/18 8:21 a.m.

meet at the nearest branch of your bank.

AnthonyGS
AnthonyGS Reader
9/11/18 8:22 a.m.
Duke said:

I took a cashier's check with me ona fly-n-drive to Atlanta.  But that was 20 years ago.  I don't know if cashier's checks are still a thing in this post-identity-theft age.

Lots of them are fake now.  Always call the bank and verify the check before handing over a title and keys.  They will verify every letter, punctuation mark, and number now.  

Robbie
Robbie PowerDork
9/11/18 8:30 a.m.

I've done it, but I'd be wary of selling and only getting a cashier's check. If you watch the bank print it out and give it to you, you're probably safe.

Scammers however can even make checks (basically stolen checks) pass the first sniff test. It's not till about 3 weeks after you deposit it that it'll get sniffed out.

Then the bank will take the money back out of your account, and possibly prosecute YOU for check fraud.

And by then the car is long gone.

I'm a fan of cash. If you are working with really expensive cars, (10k plus), well then I don't have much experience.

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy UltimaDork
9/11/18 8:33 a.m.
AngryCorvair said:

meet at the nearest branch of your bank.

You withdraw cash and the teller gives it to the seller.   I would bring some cash to give a deposit if necessary.   

My last car sale a guy wanted to meet me on Sunday and I said no to Sunday’s as I wanted to be able to go to the bank.  

He texted me his County Sheriff ID card and badge and brought over $5500 cash.   I met with him at my home and all went well for a quick sale.  

Tyler H
Tyler H UltraDork
9/11/18 8:38 a.m.

The safest method is a bank wire transfer.  It costs ~$15, but is guaranteed settles immediately upon conclusion.  Usually within an hour.   A cashier's check or bank check can still have stop-payment issued against it, and depending on your bank's policies it can take up to a week for your full funds to be made available if you take one.

Cash is subjective as far as comfort levels.  Greater than $10k payment to a business technically requires IRS form 8300.

That said, I like the flexibility of cash in my pocket when looking at a car, but I prefer to get a bank wire when selling.

Wiscocrashtest
Wiscocrashtest New Reader
9/11/18 8:39 a.m.

If you can meet at your own bank, that's the best. I have traveled to buy cars with cash, too, but not sure how many more times I'd like to do that. You can also do a wire transfer between banks. I've done that for out-of-state purchases, too. 

Harvey
Harvey Dork
9/11/18 9:24 a.m.

I would do what Tyler H is recommending. Have his bank contact your bank to transfer the funds. If his bank is in Nigeria, maybe think twice.

poopshovel again
poopshovel again MegaDork
9/11/18 9:46 a.m.

Does the seller have the title? 

rande
rande New Reader
9/11/18 9:56 a.m.

Get a cashiers check for a portion of the price and the rest in cash.  That way you don't have to carry as much cash and you have some haggle room if the vehicle doesn't turn out as stated. 

Cousin_Eddie
Cousin_Eddie HalfDork
9/11/18 10:29 a.m.

I meet them in a public parking lot and have a gun on me.  My wife sits in the truck with the doors locked witnessing everything through the windshield. We count the money together on the hood of the vehicle. Very few criminals want to get shot in a Walmart parking lot over a scam.

scardeal
scardeal SuperDork
9/11/18 10:46 a.m.

I think the plan at this point is this:

  1. Take a look at the car, test drive, etc. Don't be alone.
  2. If I want the car...
  3. Verify he's got the title, registration, etc.
  4. Haggle over price.  Decide if he wants cash or a cashier's check that I get in his presence.
  5. We sign a document saying we'll meet at my credit union and transact at the agreed upon price.  Void if either party is a no-show.
  6. Meet at my credit union.  Don't be alone.
  7. Pull out the documentation and fill but don't sign yet
  8. Pull out the cash/cashier's check.
  9. Sign and exchange keys/title/money.
93gsxturbo
93gsxturbo SuperDork
9/11/18 12:12 p.m.

Done this a few times recently as I have started buying nicer cars.

 

First one, had sold my Corvette to a friend so I took a personal check.  No worries, known the guy for years.  Deposited in my bank.  When I went to buy my F250 I pulled the Corvette money out as a cashiers check in front of the guy, gave him the balance in cash, and signed the paperwork in the bank lobby.

 

Next one, sold my old F250, dude brought $8500 in cash, counted it on my picnic table, signed the title, sent him on his way.  Kept the cash for other stuff.

 

Sold my E55 AMG, dude brought $12,500 from Michigan in cash, same story counted the cash on my picnic table, signed the title, and wished him well.  

 

Bought my Viper, sent him a $500 deposit via Paypal after looking at it in person (won the auction on Ebay), met the guy at a branch of my credit union by his house, deposited a large amount of cash from my previous two vehicle sales into my credit union account, signed paperwork on a loan for the balance of the purchase price, guy got a cashiers check, credit union got the title, I got the Viper.  Followed him to his house where the car was, loaded up my truck with all the spares, left the truck at his place, drove the Viper home, my wife took me back for my truck after I got home.

 

Bought my Land Cruiser, met the dude at a branch of my bank by his house, test drove the land cruiser, agreed to a price, gave him $10k in cash and a cashiers check for $9500 from my bank, signed the title, drove home.

 

Sold my other F250, dude got a personal loan so I met him at his bank near my work with my bike in the back of the truck, got a cashiers check drawn on the spot, signed the paperwork, hopped on my bike and rode to my credit union where I deposited the cashiers check to close out the balance of the loan on my Viper.

 

No problems so far, cash doesnt worry me, just gotta be careful.  

RevRico
RevRico UberDork
9/11/18 12:15 p.m.

I leave my cloth bag with the dollar sign on it at home. 

xflowgolf
xflowgolf Dork
9/11/18 12:36 p.m.

I'm doing this as a buyer out of state this weekend as well.  Likely going the bank wire route.  Meeting at his bank to transact.  

8valve
8valve Reader
9/11/18 1:15 p.m.

For out of state vehicles I've used escrow.com and it works.

 

 

P3PPY
P3PPY New Reader
9/11/18 1:19 p.m.
Cousin_Eddie said:

I meet them in a public parking lot and have a gun on me.  My wife sits in the truck with the doors locked witnessing everything through the windshield. We count the money together on the hood of the vehicle. Very few criminals want to get shot in a Walmart parking lot over a scam.

This is only really useful if your wife has the gun in the truck with her.

DWNSHFT
DWNSHFT Dork
9/11/18 2:50 p.m.
P3PPY said:
Cousin_Eddie said:

I meet them in a public parking lot and have a gun on me.  My wife sits in the truck with the doors locked witnessing everything through the windshield. We count the money together on the hood of the vehicle. Very few criminals want to get shot in a Walmart parking lot over a scam.

This is only really useful if your wife has the gun in the truck with her.

...and is recording video.

jharry3
jharry3 Reader
9/11/18 3:22 p.m.

Go to the bank.  Give the seller the money.   Or do an electronic transfer if possible.

I bought a car a few weeks ago and it turned out the seller did his banking at the same bank as me so it was a quick electronic transfer from my account to his.

No way I am carrying around a lot of cash and going to a stranger's house to see a potential purchase.  

spitfirebill
spitfirebill MegaDork
9/11/18 3:32 p.m.

When I bought my TR-3, I went o look at the car with a friend.  We dickered over the price and I asked him if he would take a cashiers check drawn on my bank.  He said he would, and I gave him the check when the rollback fetched the.  He gave me the title at the same time.  I guess he trusted me. 

I do not want to drive around here with a bunch of money in my pocket, because if you get stopped, it gets confiscated as drug money. 

Cotton
Cotton PowerDork
9/11/18 4:15 p.m.

I prefer bank wire for big stuff.  Under 10k I've done cash often,  but it depends on the circumstances.  Some people insist on cashiers check,  so I will do that if it's their preference.

Tyler H
Tyler H UltraDork
9/11/18 4:50 p.m.
P3PPY said:
Cousin_Eddie said:

I meet them in a public parking lot and have a gun on me.  My wife sits in the truck with the doors locked witnessing everything through the windshield. We count the money together on the hood of the vehicle. Very few criminals want to get shot in a Walmart parking lot over a scam.

This is only really useful if your wife has the gun in the truck with her.

I'm fine with the cash and the gun part, but not the hood of the truck at Wal-Mart part.  That's how you both get shot/robbed.

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