Is this some kind of weird scam?
November 9, 2017 4:15 PM   Subscribe

Sold a car on Craigslist. Guy is taking forever to pick it up. What gives?

On Sunday I posted my car for sale on Craigslist in Nevada. A guy responded who lives in a city 2 hours away, in California, saying he was very interested and could he come to look at it that night? He shows up at 10 pm, we meet at a gas station down the road. He test drives it, gives me the cash, I sign over the title. I take off the plates as is customary in Nevada. He says he'll have his tow truck driver come to pick it up in the morning.

Tuesday comes, car is still in the gas station parking lot. I text him. He says the tow truck will be there that evening. Wednesday comes, car is still there. I text him to let him know and he says, "OMG, really? I'm calling the tow company now."

Now it's Thursday. The car is still in the gas station parking lot, plateless. I am afraid it's going to be towed by the city or end up in impound or something. I call him again and he says the tow truck will be here Monday.

What the hell kind of weirdness is going on here? Is this some kind of scam I am unaware of? I had a hard enough time selling my car who was my precious baby, let alone having to drive by her sitting in the parking lot every day for upwards of a week afterwards (!!) but now I am worried that I am involved in something shady.

What should I be doing in this situation?
posted by Malleable to Shopping (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Be sure to register the change of title, with date paid.

There's a reasonble chance that a tow truck company is stringing him along and making him crazy. There's some small chance that he wants the title more than the car, but I don't really see the profit in it unless he's a car trafficking wizard. Either way, you have your money, and if it gets towed, it's on him.

Try not to think of it as your baby anymore.
posted by acm at 4:21 PM on November 9, 2017 [7 favorites]

Stop contacting him like this is your problem.

Turn in the plates and register the sale. Block his info and stop talking to him. Block him from contacting you. If the car goes missing, you don't want him to come after you - REPORT THE CAR SALE SO THIS IS NO LONGER YOUR PROBLEM
posted by jbenben at 5:12 PM on November 9, 2017 [9 favorites]

He did pay you, right? If so, make sure to notify your insurer that the vehicle is not yours, just in case something happens to it and he tries to get you to make a claim.

Then stop driving by that gas station for a while. This is indeed his problem, not yours.
posted by rpfields at 5:37 PM on November 9, 2017 [1 favorite]

Got it, thanks everybody. I did report the sale to my insurance and canceled my registration with the DMV, so I guess I'm all good on my end. Just wanted to make sure there wasn't something I wasn't thinking of that could turn out to bite me in the end.
posted by Malleable at 5:44 PM on November 9, 2017 [6 favorites]

What state are you in? If you haven't already, I'd verify that canceling the registration with the DMV is sufficient.

In Washington, for example, it's a requirement to submit a Report of Sale to the state. Is your registration cancellation sufficient to ensure that any problems with the car are no longer tied to you?
posted by reeddavid at 11:33 PM on November 9, 2017 [2 favorites]

I'd at least give him the contact info for the gas station (I know he can look it up, but this is a minimal thing you can do to help the gas station people, who have been hosting "your" car), so he can let them know what is up with the random car parked there. I'd also leave a note on the dashboard with his phone number or other contact info, so that if someone gets upset, they know who to contact.
posted by amtho at 3:49 AM on November 10, 2017

No to be too paranoid, but have you verified the cash he gave you isn't counterfeit?
posted by gottabefunky at 10:31 AM on November 10, 2017

Am I the only one surprised that the gas station hasn't had the car towed away yet? Random car, sans tags, shows up over the weekend and is still there almost a week later. I'm surprised it was still there after just a couple of days. This being said, I agree that this is the buyer's problem to resolve, not yours, so long as the transaction is 100% complete and legit.
posted by SoftSummerBreeze at 3:24 PM on November 12, 2017

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