Craigslist is an online venue for classified ads, and it has several sections for jobs, housing, services, and cars. During its nascence, Craigslist was nothing more than an online garage sale, and people used it as a venue to sell new and used items. This time, it has become a hub for people looking for used cars. Interested buyers can check out used cars on Craigslist, which they can buy at much lower and affordable prices. Most of the people on this online community are looking for used, secondhand vehicles. Craigslist offers a less troublesome way of buying or selling used automobiles. It's a venue for both car sellers and buyers. But, if you are out there looking for your next vehicle, be sure not to fall into the trap of dishonest sellers.

What's the catch?

Sellers of used vehicles on Craigslist usually do not observe the same policies that certified suppliers do. This is quite a tricky market, considering that sellers do not follow FTC rules, as stated. What happens is that when you buy directly from the owner, you will be dealing with whatever defects the vehicle has. Depending on your agreement with the owner-turned-seller, you may have them responsible for repairs. But do not guarantee that you are purchasing from legitimate sellers, and that is why customers call this form of shopping a buy-at-your-own-risk option.

Is the deal too good to be true?

There are unscrupulous individuals out there – people who post very good deals to entice unsuspecting buyers. If you see cars sold at surprisingly low prices, think of them as tricks. Check if the details are well displayed. See if the contact person responds when you inquire. Of course, most of them would. When they do, carefully read their message or email.

A typical trick would run like this: They will explain why the used car is sold at a very low price. Maybe they need the money urgently, or maybe they just bought a new car. But what rings the alarm is when they tell you to send the money over the internet to have the vehicle reserved. Be careful, because these look legitimate at the first glance.

How many times has the car been serviced?

Before you purchase a used vehicle, look at its history reports. It should have undergone maintenance services on a regular basis, and it's all right to see more than a few records of repairs. A second-hand automobile that has not been serviced regularly, may be suffering from undetected defects and problems. So, you should check for service visits in the history report. Are there gaps? If the automobile has been around for several years, it should have a healthy record of service visits. Do not buy one, unless you see a comprehensive history report. If it has been serviced only a few times, look elsewhere. It's risky to pay even a relatively smaller amount of money, as the vehicle may break down after only a few miles of driving.

What should you do?

These warnings do not mean you should not purchase used vehicles on Craigslist. Instead, they warn you to not be Deceived by notorious dealers. Sometimes, it's better to just purchase a new car, than to purchase an old one, which repair cost would always come close to or exceed the price of the new one.