I would've taken the car with me and made him sign a bill of sale AND an affidivate spelling out the exact terms and just wait for the title to arrive.
Originally Posted by blueman2
OK, great story here. I saw a listing on Craigslist for a 'new' M3 for sale by owner with 600 miles on it. I called to find out the story, and turns out the guy had bought the car over the weekend when his wife was gone and when she returned Monday, she said HELL NO!!!!! He waited a week and she said HELL NO twice as loudly, so he decided he had to sell and quickly to save the marriage. He had financed through BMW, so selling the car was tricky. He had no title yet, no plates yet, and only his original bill of sale to prove he really owned it! That scared away another other buyers, and left me as his only hope. I did my due diligence with BMW finance and decided to go for it. I paid BMW directly to pay off the loan amount of $63K. Did a bill of sales committing him to sign the car over to me once the clear title came back to him (BMW will only send title to original owner, not anyone else). He kept the car during this time until the clear title came back. I was a bit nervous for a a week, but when the clear title finally arrived, he signed it over and it was mine. It had under 800 miles when I got it. He owned it for a total of 4 weeks.
Compared to buying a brand new 2010 model at 500 over invoice (the deal my dealership offered me), I save about $5K. A good deal, but there were 2 draw backs:
1) it is now a 2 owner car
2) It took some time and nerve to do this deal. $63K is a lot to gamble with when the guy could have somehow been scamming me. I did a LOT of due diligence to make sure I was OK. Going with a dealer would have been a lot easier.
But I think it was worth the $5K savings.
However, the guy was a REALLY nice guy and I hated seeing him lose over $12K for a car he owned only 4 weeks. (He took $6K less than he paid, and lost another $6K on taxes in CA). That was a tough lesson for him.