warning to all out there - be careful when buying..
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Default warning to all out there - be careful when buying..

    Been a veteran of this forum for a few years and not often one to have a rant, but a recent experience has left me seething and I need to vent.

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    Short story - pensioner friend in Adelaide needed to replace her aging Barina with something cheap and cheerful. This poor bugger, worked hard in a low paying job, hours cut back to nothing last 18 months due to GFC. She managed to scrape together $2500, borrowing from son, Centrelink and tax cheque.

    Sydney being the bigger used car market, in steps I to find something and drive it over. Trawled the yards and the web for 7 weeks looking for something with lowish kms and air. Auto and steer being a bonus.

    Found something on the surface, looked good, guy seemed genuine. So should have twigged that something was amiss, but being on holidays for 4 weeks, i was a little too relaxed and again, he seemed genuine. Meet me at Kirribilii at x time (ad said Paddington). Should have smelt the rat when I first saw the car with different number plates to what was advertised and it wasn't a WF, but a WB. Outlined who it was for, her situation and why it needed to be the best it could be. He assured me it was a great car.

    Festiva ran okay, no smoke coming out the exhaust, 1-2 change a little lumpy, but grabbing gears instanly in eithe reverse or drive. Air con cold. Claimed to be 2nd owner, car appeared well looked after and it's condition reflected what he was saying. Oil was dirty, coolant clean and should have looked more closely at the radiator which was brand spanking new.

    Made an offer, bought it, pick it up the next day.

    The guy must have been dancing all the way home. Back to the same address in Kirribilli, handed over the cash, he handed me the keys and rego papers. Car was registered in a business name and at a Belrose address which threw me, but I was committed.

    Prior to running across to Adelaide, decided it needed a service and timing belt was an unknown quantity so that too should be changed (at my expense to help her out), so did that.

    Drove the car home after the service, didn't notice anything amiss. Didn't drive the car again until a few days later. You can imagine my horror to discover the plumes of blue smoke billowing out the exhaust. Piston rings were stuffed, but an oil additive had been added to mask this. Car only had 72,000kms on it and they appeared to be genuine.

    A-hole had stiffed me. Turns out he didn't live in Kirribilli, business was a shelf company and the mobile phone number doesn't have voicemail and never rings.

    A bit of sleuthing revealed that the shelf company is linked to Move Yourself Trailer Hire (both registered at the same Belrose address), but have had little joy with them.

    in hindsight, i should have walked away the moment i saw the different plates, but never one to take a negative view on anything, and again, had driven 45 minutes to meet the guy.

    This was all on the north shore of Sydney and even more frightening from an english born Aussie about 50 years old. As a Sydneysider, you tend to be a litte wary of a particular ethnic group in the greater west of Sydney (no offence to all those genuine decent bodies out there). but many a story can be told of rebirthed cars or write offs being presented as one owner cars.

    Needless to say, I didn't pass the Festiva on to my friend. Tried to sell it to some other sucker, but pulled out as I couldn't live with my own conscience if i did that.

    So take heed one and all

    Ask to see the current rego papers
    Get a home phone number
    Look at their drivers license
    Verify the service history and sight the receipts
    Make sure the engine is cold
    Even if you have been around cars for 25 odd years and a veteran of some 40+ car purchases, always get someone qualified to check it.

    Above all else, don't trust anyone!!

    If none of it correlates, walk away.

    Sad part is a little part of me died after this experience. Will be very wary of helping anyone out ever again and my faith in people, particularly complete strangers, has gone!

    Given this experience and the shelf companies association, i would be wary of dealing with Move Yourself Trailer Hire.

    Regards
    Andrew

    PS Found her something in a dealers yard and will take the financial hit

  2. #2
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    ouch.

    Sorry to hear about this unfortunate deal.

    Jo

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the warning Andrew, and good luck in getting some return on your "investment". I admire your honesty, particularly in not reselling it as is.

    re. checking engine when cold, I got caught out years ago with a 504 diesel. Seemd fine when hot, but bags of smoke when cold. Needed new injectors and rings replaced (finished up getting complete engine overhaul when head gasket blew).

    Cheers

    Alec

  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger! Decca's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear of your experience

    Small claims tribunal a way to go??
    Dont know what their upper limit is, but as far as I know its free, and you represent yourself

    I'd mention it to ACA or TT.

    Decca
    Present --2016 2008Outdoor / 2014 RAV4 Diesel (My utilitarian beast, now with A/T tyres...)

    Past -- 19?? 403 / 1974 504GL / 1972 R12TL / 1995 405SRi / 1997 406ST / 1998 306XT / 2004 406HD1 / 2008 308XSE HDi / 2008 307XSE

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts Haakon's Avatar
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    Yep. Been caught out once myself on a car that had badly repaired (but well hidden) crash damage. Eventually got rid of it at a massive loss to someone who wanted the engine (Rover V8) for a kit car...

    We all make mistakes. And the world has a distressingly large number of pricks in it. Neither of these facts is likely to change...
    I tried to drown my sorrows in alcohol, but the bastards learnt how to swim

  6. #6
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    Bought an absolutely disastrous 403b for a friend once. The seller conned me because he was an enthusiast and I couldn't see past that. The car industry has always attracted crooks and scammers. Before that they were selling broken winded horses in markets. The most insidious and unforgiveable scammer is the one wearing the cloak of the enthusiast. He gets under your guard. Don't feel bad about being conned, it's happened to us all and it will just make you more careful next time.

  7. #7
    Member Foghorn Lebhorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew D View Post
    This was all on the north shore of Sydney and even more frightening from an english born Aussie about 50 years old. As a Sydneysider, you tend to be a litte wary of a particular ethnic group in the greater west of Sydney (no offence to all those genuine decent bodies out there). but many a story can be told of rebirthed cars or write offs being presented as one owner cars.
    If you find out where he lives, I can get a few of the boys from this other ethnic group you mention to go to his place and discuss his penance.

  8. #8
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Thanks for all the support guys. It is unfortunate that others have suffered as a result of an unscrupulous seller.

    I received a threat of legal action from Move Yourself of for slander over the weekend. So to clarify the Move Yourself business, it is NOT http://www.moveyourself.com.au/

    The Move Yourself Trailer Hire business is listed here and is registered to the same Belrose address:

    http://www.companylist.com.au/detail...r-hire-pty-ltd.

    Esorlee Pty Ltd is registered to this same Belrose address and was the last registered owner from whom i purchased said vehicle.

    Cheers
    Andrew

    PS I requested removal of Move Yourself from the previous post on Saturday.

  9. #9
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    There's a few business names registered to that address! And someone with the same phone number who calls themselves a doctor...

  10. #10
    Fellow Frogger!
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    A doctor,

    Jeez, this is getting scary!

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