What Are the Benefits of Buying a Car from a Private Seller?

January 11, 2018

Price Negotiation

A private seller may be more willing to negotiate price. While the car dealer or used car sales lot is motivated by private and will not drop the priced beyond a certain level, the private seller may have other motivations. The seller may need cash in a hurry or may just want to get rid of the vehicle. There may also be a need to get out from under an oppressive car loan.

Less Pressure

Buying from a private seller can feature a more relaxed buying process. The buyer may have more freedom to inspect the car and take it for an extended test driver. If the buyer and seller are friends or acquaintances, the buyer may even be able to keep the car for a few days to get a better feel for the vehicle.

Better Records

If the seller is the vehicle’s original owner, the buyer can get a better idea of the vehicle’s history. The seller may be able to provide routine maintenance records. The buyer may also be able to determine when tires were last purchased or if the vehicle has had any major engine or body repairs. If the buyer is still in doubt, he can purchase a vehicle history report from vendors such as Carfax.com.

Easier Terms

Buyers that are short on a cash may be able to work out terms with a friendly or motivated seller. The seller may agree to take an upfront partial payment and receive the rest in installments or as a lump sum at a future date. This can eliminate the need for the buyer to obtain a bank loan.

Tax Savings

Buying from a private seller can result in a tax savings. The buyer will only have to pay retail sales tax, which is based on the automobile’s value.


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