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RyanB

Buying out of state from private party

So, I’m curious. For those of you that buy cars/Boats out of state from a private party, how do you do it and at the same time protect yourself?

I’m looking for a replacement winter driver. Found something I might be interested in, but before I get really committed, I’d like to work out the logistics. 

The purchase is big enough I would probably ask the owner to take it to a dealer for a PPI. If that works out, what is the next step?

When I pay, how do I make sure I get the title? Is it relatively easy to get something shipped? Do I just use uship?

What else do I need to think about?

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I've always done the PPI and then if it's one I decide to buy I'll fly/drive to the vehicle/boat before handing over the money for a hands on inspection. Not sure if that's feasible for you but I always look at it as the final step in the buying adventure. I will admit that the farthest I've had to travel is Reno, NV. I drove that one because we were towing a boat back. I bought a car in Spokane, flew there and drove the car home. I bought my first boat in Coeur d'Alene, ID. I drove out to that one too before finalizing the deal.

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don't do it.  You will get ripped off.

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OK so srsly....

Does the owner hold title?  If not it can be a very big PITA.

I just bought a new-to-me 2014 F150 a couple of months ago (locally too!) from a guy who had it registered in South Dakota and had a lien there.  The whole story is too long to type, but more than once I was cursing my great deal for the pain and suffering involved to get a clean title.  

If I were gonna buy a used car with a lien again, I think I'd finance it through my local credit union so that I could make them deal with the pain and suffering of working through the title issues for me.

On the other hand, in the spring I got a used car from an owner up in portland OR.  We spoke, agreed on a price pending PPI (at my expense) and my own personal inspection.  I sent the guy $1K to hold the car for me so he knew I was serious.  Got the PPI, it was clean.  Planned to fly up and drive back and then a bunch of weather happened and that got delayed by 2 weeks.  Finally made it up, car was great, handed over my bank check for the balance, got the title signed over, jumped in the car and drove home.  That one was totally painless.

Honestly it's the lienholder thing that is the huge pita with private party purchases.

And if it's too far away to put eyes on... I'd really want to know that someone had looked at it and could give an honest third party impartial account.  Hopefully the PPI would cover that.  But really with a car, I'd rather fly and get it to drive home anyway.  Who doesn't like a road trip in a new vehicle?

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So I guess I should be a little more specific.  Question is maybe about a car I am looking at right now.  And maybe about another purchase in the future.

I am looking at a used Q5 that is priced around $3000 less than what I can find listed elsewhere.  Owner says it is a "must sell" situation.  He hasn't elaborate much more than that.  I need to find out if he has the title, or if there is a 3rd party.

My guess is (although I don't know for sure) that at this price and with his current plight, he won't wait for me to fly up and complete the deal myself, even if I wanted to go that way.  Which leaves me wondering if some level of risk (which there is in probably any purchase) is worth saving the $.

I already told him that if I were to buy that I would pay for a PPI at a location of my choice.  He was OK with that.

I'm not interested in financing this (although I guess I could, and just pay it off right away).  Would rather just do a cash deal.

Finally, I travel for work.  Every week.  About 90 flights so far this year (which is a down year).  And this is now hunting season.  It is very hard to get a weekend pass from my better half.  Especially this time of year.  I don't want to waste it on something like this.  So I would rather purchase and ship.  Even if that means I might get a bit of a surprise.  For this one anyway, I would likely break even at worse if I got it here and had to sell.

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36 minutes ago, RyanB said:

I'm not interested in financing this (although I guess I could, and just pay it off right away).  Would rather just do a cash deal.

I totally hear you on that.  What I'm saying is that in 20/20 hindsight on my most recent deal, paying the credit union a month or two of interest would've been a bargain compared to the amount of time I spent chasing title issues down (and not working/making $$).  Once title was clear I could've paid off the CU loan and gotten title in my name.

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Wire transfer at bank with title in hand and tow it home.

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2 hours ago, RyanB said:

So I guess I should be a little more specific.  Question is maybe about a car I am looking at right now.  And maybe about another purchase in the future.

I am looking at a used Q5 that is priced around $3000 less than what I can find listed elsewhere.  Owner says it is a "must sell" situation.  He hasn't elaborate much more than that.  I need to find out if he has the title, or if there is a 3rd party.

My guess is (although I don't know for sure) that at this price and with his current plight, he won't wait for me to fly up and complete the deal myself, even if I wanted to go that way.  Which leaves me wondering if some level of risk (which there is in probably any purchase) is worth saving the $.

I already told him that if I were to buy that I would pay for a PPI at a location of my choice.  He was OK with that.

I'm not interested in financing this (although I guess I could, and just pay it off right away).  Would rather just do a cash deal.

Finally, I travel for work.  Every week.  About 90 flights so far this year (which is a down year).  And this is now hunting season.  It is very hard to get a weekend pass from my better half.  Especially this time of year.  I don't want to waste it on something like this.  So I would rather purchase and ship.  Even if that means I might get a bit of a surprise.  For this one anyway, I would likely break even at worse if I got it here and had to sell.

 

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Why don’t you buy my wife’s SQ5, fly out here to get it, and I’ll take you hunting on our ranch!😂

Edited by surfdude
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my 2 cents ... you get a good deal or think you do.  If it's too good to be true ... well we know where that goes ... if it's good enough to be true but less than perfect ... well you take a risk and pay for it by spending a few hours to get it over with ...

now to personal experience.  Bought first boat unseen (beyond pics and no PPI) out of state.  Flew out to Montana ... had shipping already organized - went to bank to sign paperwork and pass on money.  Worked eventually - got title after some calls - was mostly really the delay to pay his loan off.  Would never do it in the same fashion again but it worked and boat was back home within 3 days ... so I was on the water few days after buying it ... :biggrin:  That was in 2011.

in 2010 bought a car from San Diego via ebay.  Wasn't concerned pics were good enough and was about 3K below market.  Seller was very accommodating as the dang bank was making a fuss about wiring the money but eventually car got shipped and arrived here in perfect condition.

Traded same car in with a dealer in Missouri for a newer version.  Drove down - took a lot longer to get out but again - pics were enough.

So if the pics speaks for the car (and it's a Q5 so not a 'cheap' car) and what it's supposed to be ... fly out with your wife and have a good time picking it up.  Uship for cars is unlikely cheaper than the actual car shipping carriers but you might be lucky.  Otherwise enjoy the time driving home and sacrifice a weekend of hunting ... if you can't convince your wife now ... any time spent of chasing a title and hope for pity from her end is likely a BIG FAIL ... except it's worth to you 3K to listen to how ... you are ... 

sorry but she will tell you that for the rest of your life ... way past the time you own the car  :whistle:

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2 hours ago, surfdude said:

Why don’t you buy my wife’s SQ5, fly out here to get it, and I’ll take you hunting on our ranch!😂

Would love your SQ5.  And hunting on your ranch.  And a trip to Montana is actually on my list to try to get done before the end of the year.  But your car is more than I want to spend.  Anyway, how about hunting on the ranch...... :)

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Let me know! You prolly need an out of state tag. Car price is obo.  It would look great with a trophy on the roof😂 I actually hauled 2 deer on the roof of my rx7 back to Bozeman, when I was in college.

Edited by surfdude
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I'm looking at 2012ish Q5's.  A pretty big step down from your car.  I wouldn't even consider insulting you with an offer.  Again, would LOVE the car.  Just looking to spend less $ on this vehicle.

Out of state tag is easy.  If it isn't a draw area.  Maybe next year, unless you have a late season tag.

I would have loved to see the deer on the roof of the Rx7.  That would be a new one for me.

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What State/City is the car in? Maybe someone on this web site could go check it out for you. 

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This one was middle of nowhere Idaho.  He seems to have ghosted on me now, so I am over it.

Still looking though.....

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2 hours ago, RyanB said:

 

This one was middle of nowhere Idaho

 

Probably been there but didn’t stay.^^^ Sketchy people live in nowhere Idaho, but i’ve heard some pretty nice people live in anywhere idaho. If it changes with  the car and it’s close I could take a look at it for you if you would like.

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I am 90% sure that the car that I was looking at to start this thread is a scam.  Oh well.  Found a REALLY clean 2008 Lexus RX400h with only 46,000 miles and all dealer service records that I put a deposit on.  I'll pick it up on Friday.

Thanks for the tips.

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On 11/14/2017 at 8:58 AM, RyanB said:

I am 90% sure that the car that I was looking at to start this thread is a scam.  Oh well.  Found a REALLY clean 2008 Lexus RX400h with only 46,000 miles and all dealer service records that I put a deposit on.  I'll pick it up on Friday.

Thanks for the tips.

Good find!  

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