Watch Out For These Scams When Buying a Used Car in The UAE

People usually opt for buying used cars, rather than new ones, as they make a great alternative that is cheaper and still functional.

But wait a minute, how can you guarantee that it’s actually going to be functional and not a scam?

To sell any car in Dubai, the seller will do their best to convince you that you are getting the best deal the market can offer you and that the car will meet all your needs.

Because this is a common method and only a few sellers can be completely honest and transparent with you about the condition of the car, you can easily get ripped off if you don’t stay careful.

There are many scam dealers out there, some of which consider it their profession to leave you out of pocket. They will do everything in their power to trick you and take your money.

Here are some common scam techniques that you, as a car buyer, must be aware of when purchasing a used car:

●    Pay in Advance

Have you been asked by the seller to deposit the full car price before you pick it up?

Ok, that’s your first sign. There is no guarantee that you will ever see that person or the car they are trying to sell you again after you wire the money for them.

Yes, my friend, you can get ripped off that easy!

What scammers tend to do usually is show the same car to multiple buyers, collect money from every one of them, then disappear.

If you were to make an advance payment, make sure that you have met the seller in person, examined your potential car, got a copy of their Emirati ID, and a receipt.

Only if you do this, you can file a case against the scammer and get your money back.

●    Too Good to Be True

ِThe “Too-good-to-be-true” scam entails offering the buyer a really low and tempting price for a car of their choosing.

They will be very creative in telling you all sorts of lies for why the selling price is way below average market value.

In most cases, the seller either has a health care emergency or is being deployed by the military.

They will lure you with a legit-looking ad on a legit website and convince you to make the purchase. Then, towards the end, they will tell you, “oh, can you complete the transaction through this other website. Don’t worry, it is for security reasons.”

This is very tricky because they can offer a real-looking invoice purporting to be from a major website or will pose as a real rep from a known company through a live online chat.

They will ask you to wire the money to pay for your new-used car and send a receipt of confirmation.

You will even agree with them on a pickup time and spot, but the vehicle will never arrive. *Sad face*

●    No Test Drive

Please, don’t be considering making your car purchase without having taken the car on a test drive?

Although a 10-minute test drive might sound really short and insufficient, be sure that it will tell you a lot about the vehicle you’re about to purchase and can reveal to you some major hidden issues.

While you’re on your way to test drive, take a mechanic, or a know-it-all friend with you to inspect the car for you or give you a second opinion on the value of the car you want to purchase.

They will check that everything is in the right condition for you, the engine, air conditioning, odometer, etc. and if the car isn’t in the best condition possible, they will remind you that a test drive isn’t a commitment to buy.

Even if you were convinced this car is perfect for you before the test drive, take a moment after the test drive to reason things and consult the mechanic/friend you brought with you.

This will help you be confident in the decision you end up taking because it is well-thought-out and backed by valuable input from a trusted source.

Some people are professional scammers; they consider it their line of work to fool you and take your money.

Con artists are not going to feel sorry for you and no authority can protect you or recover your losses for you if you were not smart enough in the first place to prevent rip-offs or collect valid evidence.

Next time you’re browsing for a new used car, stay focused and pay attention to any red flags you might come across. Remember, no unguaranteed advance payments, no sketchy transactions, always inspect the potential car, and take a friend with you on the test drive. Good Luck!

Author: Sultan Asad from We Buy Cars in DXB