Originally Posted by jimbethesda
If you absolutely must give a deposit, use a service like escrow.com. Basically, you give the deposit money to them and you and the seller agree ahead of time what the parameters are for the money to be released to the seller.
I used them once when I helped the owner of the company I work for sell his $100k Porsche 911 Turbo. In that case, the buyer put the entire amount into escrow.com. Once escrow.com told us they had the $$, we shipped the car. Once the buyer received the car, he verified that the car was as advertised, and then escrow.com released the funds to us.
sounds like the correct service needed, question is, how much did it cost and who paid for it? For a $100k car and lots of busy parties, yes, it's useful, but for a used 08 valued at around $40k...I think buyer and seller can just come to an understanding on buyer's intent.