How to Purchase a For Sale By Owner Car, Truck, or SUV

Many people consider a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) vehicle because they can often save hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars off a similarly equipped used car from a car dealership. In this article, we follow the seven easy steps to follow to purchase a FSBO vehicle as demonstrated by Melinda Everett, Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner of Chapel Hill OB/GYN.

Step 1: Find Your Vehicle

Find the perfect FSBO car, truck, or SUV to meet your needs. In this case, Melinda found one using Car Pal’s Car Buying Concierge Service, but if you prefer, you can do it on your own.

Step 2: Vehicle History Check and Mechanic’s Inspection

It is important for you to know the history of the vehicle you wish to purchase, so we recommend that you purchase a CarFax or AutoCheck report. Also, a local mechanic’s inspection is always advised.

Step 3: Arrange to Meet the Seller

After you perform a thorough due diligence on the vehicle, make arrangements to meet the seller at a neutral location. A bank is an ideal place to meet because it will be easy to go ahead and make the purchase if the vehicle checks out in person. At that time, take a test drive and do a thorough visual inspection. Be sure to check that the spare tire and other equipment is there while you’re at it.

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Melinda Everett, Chapel Hill OB/GYN

Step 4: Sign For Vehicle

Once you are satisfied that the vehicle meets all of your expectations, you are ready to sign for it. It is time to go inside the bank to sign and notarize a bill of sale and the title.

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Melinda provides her fingerprint at the bank as proof of identity.

Step 5: Pay for the Vehicle and Receive Your Title and Keys

At this point you will pay for the vehicle. You can pay by cash or check. In either case, the seller will want the bank to verify the funds. Once you have paid, you will receive the title and keys to the vehicle. Two sets of keys are not guaranteed, but they are ideal and are indicative of a meticulous prior owner…which is always a good thing.

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Step 6: Register Your Vehicle

Now you have everything you need to register the vehicle in your name. This is an easy process. Write a check for your state and local taxes, and entertain others in line while you do so with a joyous spirit.

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Step 7: Enjoy Your New to You Vehicle

You’re ready to go! With the proper preparation and reliable sellers, you can be just like Melinda and drive off in your “brand new to you” vehicle in less than two hours.

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